How to cast your vote (including Postal and Proxy Voting)

There are three methods available to you to cast your vote; in person at the polling station, receiving your ballot paper(s) by Post (Postal Voting, or appointing someone else to vote on your behalf (Proxy Voting)

Polling station

The traditional method of voting at an election is for an elector to their visit local polling station on election day to cast their vote.

All polling stations open for voting at 7am and close at 10pm.

When entering a polling station, each elector will need to confirm their name and address and show their accepted form of photographic ID to the polling station staff, who will check that their details are included on the electoral register and that they are eligible to vote in the relevant election.

You can apply for a Voter Authority Certificate if you do not have an accepted form of photographic ID.

Providing that the information provided is correct, the elector will be issued with a ballot paper on which to cast their vote.

In each polling station, a polling booth will be available for electors to cast their vote in private.

Once the elector has voted according to their preference, the ballot paper should be folded and placed in the ballot box indicated by the polling station staff.

After the ballot paper has been posted in the ballot box, the voting process is complete.

If you are unsure about the location of your local polling station, a poll card will be sent approximately three to four weeks prior to the election confirming the date of the election and where you need to go to cast your vote.

Postal Voting

If you are unable to go to the polling station, you can setup a postal vote.

The easiest way to apply for a postal vote is online.

Postal ballot papers are sent to voters via 1st Class post in fixed despatch windows. The dates of the despatches will be communicated on the main webpage for the election. The earliest despatch is usually sent seven to ten working days before the election. If the dates are not convenient for you, i.e. you are going away, you may find that appointing someone else to vote on your behalf (Proxy Voting) to be a more appropriate option.

The deadline to apply for a postal vote, in time for a specific election, is 5pm 11 working days before the election.

Proxy Voting

You can apply for non-permanent proxy arrangements, i.e. for one election only, using the online service.

Please contact us if you require a permanent proxy voting arrangement.

The person appointed as your proxy should be able to go to your polling station to cast your vote. If this is not possible, they can apply to cast your vote by post. Please contact us if this is required.

Your proxy can only act as proxy for no more than four people, of which only two can be domestic voters.

When attending the polling station, your proxy must take an accepted form of photographic ID with them. If they do not have an accepted form of photographic ID, they can apply for a Voter Authority Certificate, which they can use instead.