Voting at polling stations, what to do if you can’t get to your polling station.
Around 6 weeks before any election or referendum, we’ll send you a poll card. You can only vote at the polling station named on your poll card.
The poll card will also have information about the election or referendum taking place. This includes any deadlines you need to know.
How to vote at the polling station
Polling stations are open from 7am until 10pm. They do not close during the day.
You do not need your poll card to vote at the polling station unless you’re registered as an anonymous elector.
From May 2023, voters will be asked to show photo ID before casting their vote. Find out more about these changes on Voter ID.
When you get to the polling station
Go to the reception desk. The polling station staff will ask you for:
- your full name and address
- your photo ID
The staff will then give you your ballot papers.
Take the ballot papers to the polling booth to vote. Fold your ballot paper and place it in the ballot box.
If you make a mistake, do not put your ballot paper in the ballot box. Ask the polling station staff for help.
You must not take photos inside the polling station.
You can take photos outside the polling station and share them on social media to encourage your family and friends to vote.
If you can't go to your polling station
If you can’t go to your polling station, you can apply to:
- vote by post so that your ballot papers are sent to you in the post around 2 weeks before the date of the election, or
- vote by proxy, which means that someone else can vote on your behalf in the polling station
This is called an absent vote. You can set up an absent vote in advance. The deadlines for returning application forms to us will be on your poll card.