There are three ways to vote in an election; at a polling station, by post or by proxy. 

Vote at a polling station

Once you have registered to vote, you will receive a poll card at your address telling you where to vote and the hours your polling station will be open.

This will arrive around four weeks before the elections.

Polling stations are open 7am to 10pm on the election day. Staff will be on hand to help so please ask questions if you are unsure of anything. You can only vote at the polling station on your poll card. It is not possible to check online which polling station you should use. 

For more information regarding voting at a polling station please visit the Electoral Commission website.

Voting by post

Voting by post is an easy and convenient way of voting if you do not want to vote in person at a polling station.

You can apply to vote by post for a particular election or referendum, for a set period of time or for all future polls. Postal votes can be sent to addresses in the UK and abroad.

You must be registered and eligible to vote.

If you have recently moved house and still wish to vote by post, you must apply for a new postal vote. You have the option to request a new postal vote application form when you register to vote at your new address.

How to apply for a postal vote

You must apply in advance, by 5pm, 11 working days before an election. You are strongly advised to complete and send in your application early. Don't wait until the election date is known.

Download one of our postal vote application forms, print off, read the information, follow the instructions, complete and return the form. Alternatively, contact Electoral Services and they will send you an application form.

How to check if you have a postal vote

If you wish to know whether you have a postal vote, please contact Electoral Services and they can confirm whether you have a postal vote set up.

How to cancel your postal vote

If you wish to cancel your postal vote, you will need to send a signed letter to Electoral Services requesting that they cancel your postal vote. Alternatively, contact Electoral Services who can send you a postal vote cancellation form.  The completed letter/form will need to be received by the same deadline of applications for a postal vote, 5pm 11 working days prior to an election.

Returning your postal vote pack

Ballot papers and accompanying postal voting statement are usually sent out in a postal vote pack about two weeks before the day of an election. Once you’ve completed the forms by following the instructions in your postal vote pack, you then need to return these to us by 10pm on the day of the election, using one of the following options:

  • by post in the pre-paid envelope provided
  • by taking it to a polling station in the ward or division or constituency of the election
  • by bringing it to Charnwood Borough Council, Southfield Road, Loughborough, LE11 2TX

Please allow plenty of time for posting to ensure that your papers arrive in good time.

For more information regarding voting at a polling station please visit www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-am-a/voter/voting-person-post-or-proxy/voting-post.

Voting by proxy

If you aren't able to cast your vote in person, you can ask someone you trust to cast your vote for you. This is called a proxy vote and the person casting your vote is often referred to as your proxy. You must give a reason why you can't get to your polling station in person.

The person voting on your behalf can either go to your polling station to cast your vote, or can apply to vote for you by post.

You must be registered and eligible to vote.

Who can be your proxy

Someone can be your proxy if they are:

  • 18 or over
  • registered to vote
  • able to get to your polling station on polling day (unless they obtain a postal vote to vote on your behalf before the postal vote deadline)
  • eligible to vote in the election

Your proxy does not have to be related to you. However, they can only be a proxy for close relatives and a total of two other people at the same election.

How to apply for a proxy vote

Choose the proxy vote application form for the reason you cannot vote in person, from the following lists. Download the relevant proxy application form, print off, read the information, follow the instructions, complete and return the form to Electoral Services using one of the options below.

Alternatively, contact Electoral Services and they will send you an application form.

To return your completed form, you can:

  • Return your form by post or in person to: Electoral Registration Officer, Charnwood Borough Council, Southfield Road, Loughborough, LE11 2TR
  • Alternatively, attach a scanned copy of your completed form using our contact form

Circumstances under which you may apply for a temporary proxy vote:

You might know you are going to be on holiday, or will be away for work for an upcoming election day. You only want a proxy vote for that particular election, and not on a long-term basis:

Circumstances under which you may apply for a permanent proxy vote:

How to check if you have a proxy vote

If you wish to know whether you have a proxy vote, please contact Electoral Services and they can confirm whether you have a proxy vote set up.

How to cancel your proxy vote

If you wish to cancel your proxy vote, you will need to send a signed letter to Electoral Services requesting that they cancel your proxy vote. Alternatively, contact Electoral Services who can send you a proxy vote cancellation form.  The completed letter/form will need to be received by the same deadline of applications for a proxy vote, 5pm 6 working days prior to an election.

For more information regarding voting at a polling station please visit www.electoralcommission.org.uk/i-am-a/voter/voting-person-post-or-proxy/voting-proxy.

Last updated: Fri 7th May, 2021 @ 08:33