How to vote on polling day

To be able to vote, you must first be registered.

Voting at a polling station is very straightforward and there is always a member of staff available to help if you're not sure what to do.

If you are on the electoral register, you will receive a poll card before the election telling you where and when to vote, though you do not need your poll card in order to be able to vote.

1.  On election day, go to your local polling station.

If you are disabled and need assistance you can ask to have a companion with you when you vote. 

2.  Tell the staff inside the polling station your name and address. This is so they can check that you are on the electoral register. You can show them your poll card, but you do not need it to vote. 

3.  The staff at the polling station will give you a ballot paper.

It will list the candidates that you can vote for, and the party they represent.  It will have an official mark. You may be given more than one ballot paper if there is more than one election on the same day.

If you have a visual impairment, you can ask for a special voting device that allows you to vote on your own in secret.

4.  Take your ballot paper into a polling booth.

This is so that no one can see how you vote.  Mark a cross (X) in the box to the right of the name of the candidate or party you want to vote for. 

Do not write anything else on the paper or your vote may not be counted.

5.  Fold the ballot paper in half and put it in the ballot box.

Do not let anyone see your vote.  If you are not clear on what to do, ask the staff at the polling station to help you.

You can download a 'step by step guide to voting' or have a look at the Electoral Commission's animated polling station walkthrough to see how easy it is to vote.