How to Vote

Vote by Post

Anyone can vote by post but you will have to complete an Postal vote application form.

You can apply for a postal vote for a indefinite or temporary period and you can also specify which elections you would like a postal vote for. If you change address you will have to apply again for a postal vote.

Before the election you will be sent a polling card advising you of your postal voting arrangement and the dates you should expect the delivery of your ballot paper postal pack to arrive.

When your ballot paper postal pack arrives it will contain your ballot paper, a ballot paper envelope, a postal voting statement and a return envelope.

Please ensure that the statement is completed with your signature and date of birth as failure to do this will make your vote invalid.

The video below shows instructions on how to complete your postal vote pack and vote by post

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Postal vote rejection notices

Recent changes to European regulations mean that voters can now be made aware of a range of mistakes and omissions that caused their vote to be rejected.

The Council has recently sent out Notices to those individuals whose postal vote was rejected at the European Parliamentary Election because the signature or date of birth supplied by the voter did not match the records the Council holds.

The following information is provided to help anyone who may have received a letter.

By law the Returning Officer has to check the signature and date of birth returned on every postal voting statement and determine whether they match those held on record. Where they do not or where they are not provided, the Returning Officer must reject the postal vote. This is to preserve the integrity of the postal voting process. The Returning Officer’s decision is final.

To avoid losing out in future, voters should ensure that they comply with the instructions in the covering letter sent to them which sets out:

  1. If the rejection is as a result of the signature not matching – how to complete a signature refresh form and the date by which this form must be submitted.
  2. Where the rejection is as a result of the date of birth not matching – how to include the date of birth in the correct format on the postal voting statement.
  3. Where the rejection is as a result of the date of birth and/or signature being absent – how to provide the date of date of birth and signature next time.

If you have any queries please contact Election staff on 01200 414411.

Further information can also be found on the Electoral Commission website: