If you have not done so already, you will need to register to vote by going to www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
If your name is on the electoral register and you are aged 18 or over, you should get a poll card about one month before an election.
The poll card will tell you where your polling station is and the day of the election.
Upon visiting your polling station (between 7am and 10pm), the clerk at the polling station will check your name is on the register and then give you a ballot paper.
The ballot paper will say how many candidates you can vote for. Take the ballot paper to one of the polling booths and put a cross (X) in the box next to the name of the candidate(s) you wish to support.
Do not write anything else on the ballot paper or your vote may not be counted.
Once you have voted, fold your ballot paper and put it in the locked ballot box. You don't have to tell anyone who you voted for.
If there is more than one election taking place that day (e.g. a parish and a district election), you may have more than one ballot paper to complete. .
If you require any guidance, please do not hesitate to ask the election staff in the polling station or telephone 01684 862200.
In order to vote, you must be 18+ years of age and registered to vote.
You must also be:
- A British citizen; or
- A citizen of another Commonwealth country; or
- A citizen of a British Overseas Territory; or
- A citizen of the Republic of Ireland; or
- For certain elections (excluding UK Parliamentary Elections), a national of another European Union country.
You can also vote if you are a British Citizen living abroad, or if you fall into one of the following Special Category electors:
- HM Forces service voters (and their spouses or civil partners)
- Crown servants and British Council employees (and their spouses or civil partners)
- People living in the UK but who have no permanent address or fixed address
- Patients in mental hospitals whose stay at the hospital is sufficient for them to be regarded as resident there
- Remand prisoners whose stay at a penal institution is sufficient for them to be regarded as resident there
You can vote as long as your name is included on the electoral register.
If you go online to www.gov.uk/register-to-vote to register to vote when you are 16/17, the system put your details in ‘holding’ until your 18th birthday. You will then be automatically registered on that day.
Yes – you can vote in General and European Parliamentary Elections if you are registered as an overseas elector.
To be eligible you must:
- Be a British citizen
- Have moved abroad less than 15 years ago
- Have been on the electoral register in the Malvern Hills area before you moved abroad (or if you were under 18 when you moved abroad, your parent(s)/guardian(s) must have been on the register) - if you were last registered elsewhere than Malvern Hills, apply to the local council for that area
You can register to vote online by going to www.gov.uk/register-to-vote
Unless you will be in the UK on polling day, you will need to apply for one of the following absent voting methods:
- Postal Voting: Anyone, including overseas electors, can apply for a postal vote for all elections, or for a particular election, without needing to give a reason. Please note that we strongly advise that you appoint a proxy rather than electing to vote by post - the statutory electoral timetables do not allow us to begin dispatching postal ballot papers until at most 11 working days before polling day, so depending on the postal service to your country of residence there may not be time for you to complete and return your ballot papers.
You can download a postal vote application form here and return it to the address on the form or email it to firstname.lastname@example.org. The last time for the receipt of applications for new postal votes for a particular election is 11 working days before polling day. This is also the deadline for making any changes to existing postal or proxy votes.
- Proxy Voting: Alternatively, you can apply to appoint a proxy who would vote at your polling station on your behalf. People appointed as proxies must: a) Themselves be eligible to vote at that/those election(s) b) Only be proxy for a maximum of two people (unless they are related to them).
If you appoint a proxy, they will be able to vote at the polling station for your previous Malvern address, or they can apply to cast your vote by post if they are unable to get to this polling station on election day.
You can download a proxy vote application form here and return it to the address on the form or email it to email@example.com. The last time for the receipt of applications for new proxy votes for a particular election is 5pm 6 working days before polling day.
Contact Electoral Services by telephone 01684 862200 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org if you prefer a form to be sent to you.
Emergency Proxy Voting: If you are unable to attend your polling station due to a medical emergency or occupational reason, and the deadline for proxy applications at that particular election has already passed, you may be apply to appoint an emergency proxy by contacting Electoral Services by telephone 01684 862200 or by email email@example.com for a form to be sent to you. You will need a supporting signature from a medical practitioner, or your employer, depending on which type of emergency proxy you are applying for. The list of people who can support your application is in the notes included with each form. The completed application form must reach us by 5pm on polling day.
If you are unable to attend the polling station in person for reasons relating to your occupation, service or employment you can apply to appoint an emergency proxy by contacting Electoral Services by telephone 01684 862200 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org for a form to be sent to you.
Please note that this application can only be used in cases of medical emergencies or employment emergencies which have occurred since the standard proxy voting deadline (six working days before the election) - for pre-existing medical conditions the postal and proxy voting procedures and deadlines above still apply.
You do not need your poll card in order to vote. The poll card is sent for information only. However, it may make it easier for the polling station staff to locate your name on the register if you bring your poll card with you.
It is a legal requirement that poll numbers are written on a numbered list.
The procedure exists to detect and prove any possible abuses or fraud.
At the end of the poll, the lists are sealed in a secure packet. The packet containing the numbered list is not opened at the count. At the end of the count the counted ballot papers are also sealed in a secure packet.
After the election the sealed packets are held securely within the Council Offices for 12 months as per legal statute.
The sealed packets can only be opened by an Order from the High Court or County Court provided that the Court is satisfied that an Order is needed to help prosecute for an election offence.
The procedure is there to protect the integrity of the democratic process and not to undermine it. Your vote is, therefore, secret.
These people are called tellers and are used by each of the main political parties to help with their election campaigns.
They have no standing in electoral law and are not connected with the official election process.
You don't have to give them your poll number if you don't want to.
Yes - each polling station will have one booth that is wider and has a lower writing shelf designed for voters using a wheelchair.
If a polling station has alternative access for wheelchair users this will be signposted.
For voters with sight difficulties there is a large cAopy of the ballot paper available to read.
A device with braille numbers which can be attached to the ballot paper is also available at every polling station.
If you would like to know whether disabled car parking and toilet facilities are available at your polling station, and what, if any, accessibility issues you might encounter, you can contact Electoral Services by telephone on 01684 862200 or by email via email@example.com.
Our polling stations are kept under review at all times. We welcome any comments from electors if they feel there are issues with a particular polling station.
The Presiding Officer or a voter's companion can assist a voter with disabilities.
Anyone who helps a voter in this way will be required to complete a declaration at the polling station.
Alternatively, you can apply for a postal vote or appoint a proxy to vote on your behalf.
If you make a mistake on your ballot paper, show it to the clerk at the polling station and ask for another one - do not put the spoilt paper in the ballot box or you will not be able to request a new ballot paper.
The clerk will issue you with a new paper and put your spoilt paper in a sealed envelope.
Immediately after voting has finished, the ballot box is sealed by polling station staff to ensure that nothing can be added to or taken from the box.
The ballot box is then taken to the count location where the contents are counted with the ballot papers from other polling stations.
The candidate who receives most votes is declared the winner and is elected to the position contested. Where more than one position is being contested, there will be more than one winner - e.g. in a two-member district ward the candidates with the most and second-most votes will be elected.