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Ways to vote

Make a difference in local and national decisions by registering to vote in UK elections or referendums. Most people go to a polling station in person to vote but you can cast your vote in other ways.

Vote in person

If you are voting in person, you must bring a form of ID.

If you’ve registered and are eligible to vote, the local elections office will send you a poll letting telling you where and when to vote. You can still vote if you have misplaced your poll letter, you don’t have to take it with you to the polling station.

  1. Polling stations are open from 7am to 10pm
  2. Provide your name and address, address and photographic ID to polling station staff
  3. You will be issued with a ballot paper and this will list the candidates you can vote for
  4. Take your ballot paper into the polling booth and follow the displayed instructions – you can use your own pen
  5. Fold your ballot paper and put it in the ballot box

If you’re disabled the election staff are able to help you. The polling stations will have wheelchair access, equipment for visual impairment and low-level polling booths.

Vote by post

You can request a postal vote for a single election or for the next 3 years. You do not need a reason to request a postal vote, however, if you need your postal ballot papers to be sent to an alternative address, you will need to supply a reason why.

Applying Online

When you submit an online application, you will need the following:

  • To be on the electoral register
  • Your name, address and date of birth
  • National Insurance Number
  • An image of your signature on plain, white paper.

Your signature will be stored so that we can match this to your signature when you return your ballot paper with your vote. If this information does not match, then your vote will not be counted.

If you cannot find or do not have a National Insurance number, or it cannot be matched, you will be contacted for further information to prove your identity. This will involve providing documentary evidence, if you cannot supply documentary evidence then you will have to provide an attestation.

You must have completed an application to vote by post at least 11 working days before an election.

Completing the postal vote

Rule changes for postal votes

From 2 May 2024, there are new rules to the handling of postal votes.

Read more at Postal voting new rules.

If your postal vote is spoiled – do not throw it away.

To get a replacement you need ring the Elections office 01472 324160 and they’ll need your spoiled paper before they can issue a new one.

  1. Your ballot paper will arrive in the post with instructions you must follow
  2. On the postal voting statement, you must sign it and put your date of birth – this statement is scanned and will verify that this is your vote
  3. Seal your marked ballot paper and signed postal voting statement in the envelope provided
  4. Please post your vote back as quickly as possible to make sure it’s counted
  5. If you miss the return date deadline, you can still take your vote to the polling station by 10pm

Changing your postal vote

If you already vote by post and something changes, it’s important that you complete a new postal vote application form .

Vote by proxy

If you’re unable to vote at your polling station we suggest applying for a postal vote. If that isn’t suitable and you need someone to vote on your behalf you can apply for a proxy vote. Unlike a postal vote there is a unique criteria to have a proxy vote and you must provide a reason for your application.

  • a physical condition that means you can’t vote in person or by postal
  • attending a course for educational purposes and won’t make it to your polling station
  • unable to vote due to work or being away

Find where you need to vote

Your polling station will be listed on your poll card, if you do not have your polling card do not assume the station closest to you is where you can vote.

Or you can simply enter your postcode on the Where do I vote? website. Please note this information may not be up to date for by-elections. If you are unsure you can call our elections helpline on 01472 324160.

Related content

Find my polling station

Update your electoral registration details

Electoral registration questions

Rule changes for postal votes

Contact details

Elections, Municipal Offices, Town Hall Square, Grimsby, North East Lincolnshire, DN31 1HU

Elections team contact form

Telephone: 01472 324160