There are three ways you can vote in an election:
- in person at a Polling station;
- by post;
- by Proxy (someone else can vote on your behalf).
In person at a polling station
If you are registered to vote, around 4 weeks before an election you should receive a poll card to your address. This will tell you where to vote and the hours your polling station will be open.
What happens at the polling station?
- On arriving, the Presiding Officer will ask you to state your name and address.
- If you are eligible to vote, they will then issue you with a ballot paper.
- You take the ballot paper to a voting booth.
- You mark a X in the box to the right of the candidates' name that you want to vote for.
- The number of votes you can make will be shown at the top of your ballot paper.
- Note: Do not put any other mark on the ballot paper, or your vote may not be counted.
- When you are happy with your vote, fold the ballot paper and put it into the ballot box.
Staff are there to help, so please ask them about anything you are not sure of.
This is an easy and convenient way of voting, if you are not able to get to the polling station.
How do I apply for postal voting
To vote by post, please download and fill in this form: Application to vote by post [PDF 62KB] .
After completing the form, you will need to print it, sign it, and send it back to us. You need to sign your application form personally because we need a copy of your signature for voting security reasons.
Who can apply for a postal vote?
To apply for a postal vote, you must be:
- aged 18 or over;
- and be on the Electoral Register .
Note: You do not need to give a reason, or have the application form countersigned, to get a postal vote.
Where can I have my postal vote sent to?
They can be sent to any address, in the UK or overseas, like:
- your home address;
- any other address that you give;
- where you will be staying on holiday.
Note: Please consider if there will be enough time to get and return your ballot paper, by election day. This is very important for addresses outside the UK.
When will I receive my postal voting papers?
Postal votes are usually sent out about two weeks before election day.
Once you have got it, mark your vote on the ballot paper. Make sure you send it back, so it arrives with us by the close of poll (10pm on election day).
Note: If it arrives later than this your vote will not be counted.
What should I do when I get my postal voting papers?
- Put them somewhere safe.
- Do not let anyone else handle them.
- Make sure that they are not left where someone else can pick them up.
How do I use my postal vote?
- Complete your ballot paper in secret, on your own.
- Do not let anyone else vote for you.
- Do not let anyone else see your vote.
- Do not give the ballot paper to anyone.
- Put the ballot paper in the envelope and seal it up.
- Complete and sign the postal voting statement which is attached to the ballot paper envelope marked 'A'.
- Put the envelope marked 'A' (with you ballot paper inside), into the larger envelope marked ‘B’ and seal it.
How do I return my postal vote?
- Take it to the post box yourself, or hand it in at Halifax Town Hall. You can also take it to your local polling station, on the day of the election day.
- If you cannot do that, give it to a person that you know and trust to post it for you.
- Do not hand it over to anyone. Protect your vote.
- Do not leave it where someone else can pick it up.
Remember that this is your vote - so keep it to yourself.
Note: You should contact the police if anyone tries to:
- help you against your will;
- or force you to give them your postal vote.
What if I move home?
If you move house, you must tell the Electoral Registration Officer right away, or you may lose your postal vote.
Do you want to know more?
If you have any other queries, please contact:
To appoint a proxy, you must have a valid reason for not going to the polling station in person, like:
- you are disabled;
- or will be out of the area on polling day.
Note: The deadline for applications to vote by proxy is 5pm, 6 working days before a polling day.
The sooner you apply the better! This gives us more time to tell your proxy where to go to cast your vote. An application for a proxy vote is valid for one election only.
Do you need to appoint a proxy to vote on your behalf on a more permanent basis? If yes, you will need to contact us for the relevant application form. You may need to get your application countersigned by your Doctor or other qualified person.
To obtain an application to vote by proxy, contact: Electoral services .
Forms are also available in a larger print version, on request.
For more about voting, visit: About my vote (The Electoral Commission).
Do you require assistance?
Please be aware: Some polling stations do not have easy access for electors with disabilities.
For these polling stations, a note to that effect will be included on your poll card.
Other voting arrangements can be made for electors who are unable to access polling stations.
Blind or partially sighted voters
Tactile voting templates and large print ballot papers are available at all polling stations.
You can take a companion to assist you, or ask the Presiding Officer at the polling station for help.
Voters with learning disabilities
For an easy read guide for people with a learning disability, visit: Mencap - Guides to voting .