Here are the answers to some key questions you may have about the upcoming election…

Key Dates to Remember
Last date for voter registration – Monday 19th April
Last date for receipt of postal applications – 17:00 on Tuesday 20th April
Last date for receipt of proxy vote applications – 17:00 on Tuesday 27th April
Last date for receipt of emergency proxy applications – 17:00 on Thursday 6th May
Local election voting day – 07:00 to 22:00 on Thursday 6th May
Do I need to register to vote in the local elections 2021?
Only if you have not received a poll card, in which case you need to make sure you have registered before the voter registration deadline of Monday 19th April. Registering can be done online at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote. If you have received a poll card you will be eligible to vote at the local elections and will be able to cast your vote. You do not need to re-register.

If your circumstances change, for example you move home between now and the registration deadline on 19th April, you will need to re-register at your new property.

If you need to check that you are on the Register of Electors then call Isle of Wight Council on 01983 823380 or email [email protected]. You will need to quote your full name and address.

What if I am unable to register online?
You can request a voter registration form be sent to you by contacting electoral services on (01983) 823380. You must make sure you return the form before the registration deadline of midnight on 19th April to County Hall, High Street, Newport, PO30 1UD.
Who can vote in the local elections?
Registered, eligible, citizens in England, Wales and Scotland over 18 who are resident in the UK, and whose name appears on the Register of Electors.
How do I vote?
In person – Your poll card will tell you when voting takes place and where you should go to vote on Thursday 6th May. A full list of polling stations can be found here. You can expect to see many of the measures we’ve all become used to over recent months in banks, shops and other indoor spaces, such as hand sanitiser, floor markings and having to wear face coverings. Single-use pencils will be available at each station for those who do not bring their own.

On poll day, when you go to your polling station, you will be given a piece of paper with the names of the different candidates for your local ward area on it. You then go to a booth and put a X in the box which reflects your choice(s) and put the paper into a ballot box.

By post – If you are already registered as a postal voter then you will receive your vote through the post. If you cannot or do not wish to attend your local polling station, you can still vote by post by filling out the application form available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/apply-for-a-postal-vote. You will need to apply by 17:00 on Tuesday 20th April to vote by post in the local elections.

If you would like to cancel your postal vote and vote in person instead, email the council’s electoral services at [email protected], stating that you wish to cancel your postal vote and giving your full name and address. You can also cancel your postal vote by writing, giving your full name and address, to Electoral Services, Isle of Wight Council, High Street, Newport, Isle of Wight, PO30 1UD.

By proxy – If you are unable to vote in person or by post, you can choose to have someone you trust cast your vote for you. The person you choose can only act as proxy if they are 18 and are registered individually themselves. A person cannot vote as a proxy for more than 2 people at any 1 election or referendum, unless they are a close relative.

In England, Scotland or Wales, you will need to download and complete a form to apply to vote by proxy. There are different forms depending on the reason that you need a proxy vote, at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/proxy-voting-application-forms.  If you want to vote by proxy in the local elections, you will need to apply by 17:00 on Tuesday 27th April.

By emergency proxy – If, after 17:00 on Tuesday 27th April, you find you are unable to attend your polling station in person due to a medical emergency – such as self-isolating due to coronavirus – or due to your occupation, service or employment and you only become aware of that fact AFTER 17:00 Tuesday 27th April; then you may be able to appoint an emergency proxy to vote on your behalf.

Contact the electoral services team by email on [email protected]; in writing to Electoral Services, Isle of Wight Council, High Street, Newport, Isle of Wight, PO30 1UD or call 01983 823380. Emergency proxy votes can be issued up to 17:00 on Thursday 6th May.

What is the poll card for?
The card tells you when voting takes place and where you should go to vote on 6th May 2021. Poll cards started being issued from 23rd March and they should have arrived on doorsteps by 30th March. If you do not receive a poll card after 30th March, it may be that you are not registered to vote –  check this with the electoral services team by calling 01983 823380.
What happens if I lose my poll card?
If you lose your poll card, don’t worry – you don’t need to bring it with you to vote. Simply go to your local polling station. If you don’t know where that is, check out the polling stations page.
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