Election chief's reminder message for voters ahead of 2 May polls

  • Monday 29 April 2024

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CGI of a white ballot paper being placed in a ballot box. Text in the top right hand corner reads 'your vote matters, don't lose it'.

Manchester voters in two elections taking place this Thursday, 2 May, are being reminded of polling arrangements. 

Along with electors in the other nine boroughs of Greater Manchester, voters will be selecting the Mayor of Greater Manchester in mayoral elections. 

They will also be casting their votes across the city to elect 33 councillors – one in each of the city’s 32 wards plus an additional vacancy in Didsbury East after a serving councillor stood down before their term had expired. Polls will be open from 7am to 10pm.   

Under national rules, electors will have to have approved photo ID such as a UK, EU or Commonwealth passports, photocard driving licence, a Voter Authority Certificate or other specified forms of ID in order to be able to vote. Accepted ID can still be used for voting even if it has expired as long the photo is still a good likeness of the elector. A full list of accepted ID can be found a www.electoralcommission.org.uk/VoterID   

Anyone who has lost their approved ID, or who applied for a Voter Authority Certificate before the 5pm on 24 April deadline which hasn’t arrived, should contact the Council’s Electoral Services Unit at esu@manchester.gov.uk or on (0161) 2341212.   

At polling stations privacy screens will be available for anyone who wants to show their ID in private, for whatever reason, and staff are trained to handle such requests discreetly and with courtesy.   

People who have requested and received postal votes are being encouraged to complete and return them as soon as possible. If they can’t post the completed postal ballot themselves they should only ask someone they know and trust to post them. It is a criminal offence for candidates, party workers or campaigners to handle the postal vote of anyone who is not a close relative or someone for whom they provide care.  

Postal votes can still be posted back on polling day – Royal Mail carry out a final sweep of post boxes and deliver postal votes to elections staff - as long as they are posted before the final collection time for that postbox. If they are posted after the final collection time, they will not arrive in time to be counted. 

Electors can also hand in completed postal ballots to any polling station in the Manchester City Council area on 2 May - or at the Customer Service Centre in the town hall extension building, Mount Street entrance, between 9am and 5pm up to and including polling day. 

Returning Officer for Manchester Joanne Roney CBE said: “While this is not the first election to take place under new national photo ID rules, we know people are still getting used to them. I’d urge anyone going to a polling station to make sure they take the correct photo ID with them.  

“I know a lot of people choose to vote by post rather than at polling stations and I’d also encourage anyone who has a postal vote to make sure they handle it carefully, and don’t leave it too late to post. 

“We don’t want anyone who is eligible to vote in these significant elections to miss out.” 

The count for Manchester’s local elections will take place on the morning of Friday 3 May 2024 and for the Greater Manchester Mayoral Elections on Saturday 4 May 2024.  

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