How to Vote
Voting in a polling station
All voters are allocated to a specific polling station. We will provide details of the polling station on your poll card, which is sent around 5 weeks before polling day.
All polling stations are assessed for accessibility and will have facilities to enable everyone to vote.
If you have any concerns about your allocated polling station, or you wish to discuss specific accessibility requirements, please contact electoral services directly.
Note that from May 2023 it is a requirement for all voters in polling stations to show ID before they can be issued with a ballot paper.
Completing a ballot paper
When you are issued with a ballot paper, either in a polling station, or via a postal vote, you will find instructions at the top of the ballot paper to explain exactly how to vote. In most cases, you will be asked to place an X in the box next to the candidate of your choice. If you have more than one vote, as in some local councillor elections, the ballot paper will tell you.
Don't make any other marks on the ballot paper as it could lead to your vote being rejected. If you're not sure how to mark the ballot paper, ask a member of staff in the polling station, or contact electoral services by phone.
How to vote by post
- To apply for a postal vote, print and complete the application form below and return it to us by post or email.
- If you want to email us the form, you need to print it, sign it by hand and scan it - we can't accept digital signatures.
- You can apply for a one-off postal vote for a specific election, or for all elections.
- If you apply for a postal vote, we will send your ballot paper to your home or another specified address.
- You need to apply for a postal vote by 5pm on the 11th working day before the election.
How to vote by proxy
- To apply for a proxy vote, print and complete the application form below and return it to us by post or email.
- If you want to email us the form, you need to print it, sign it by hand and scan it because we can't accept digital signatures.
- You can apply to vote by proxy for a specific election using the form below.
- You need to apply for a proxy vote by 5pm on the 6th working day before the election.
Emergency proxy voting
Find out more information about emergency proxy voting.