General Election 2024 postal vote and how to make sure it is counted

-Credit: (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)


The General Election is now just over a week away and for those who cannot vote in person, a postal voting option is available. However, in the 2019 General Election, many postal votes were not counted.

Just over 50,000 postal ballots covering the Bristol constituencies were issued ahead of election night. Of these, 41,012 were returned and counted on election night.

While around 9,000 people didn't return their vote, 502 did, but they didn't count. There are rules to follow when completing your postal vote, so we have put together some advice on how to make sure you have your say.

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If you have missed the deadline for a postal vote

The deadline to apply for a postal vote has now passed. However, if you are unable to vote in person you can still apply online for a proxy vote until 5pm on 26 June.

A proxy vote is when you ask someone to vote on your behalf. Your proxy voter should be someone you trust and you will need to tell them which candidate you want to vote for.

Completing your ballot paper

Ballot papers and postal voting packs arrive separately. You should have already received your ballot paper.

When your postal voting pack arrives, keep it somewhere safe. When it is time to vote, make sure you read the instructions carefully, as filling in the form incorrectly will mean your vote isn't counted.

On your postal voting statement, you must include your name, date of birth and signature. In Bristol constituencies for the 2019 election, the biggest mistakes made by postal voters were a missing date of birth and a mismatched signature.

When you registered for a postal vote, you will have supplied a photograph of your signature. It is important to make sure that this corresponds with the signature you give on your postal voting statement.

Cast your vote on your ballot paper and seal it in the ballot envelope. Put that and your postal voting statement in the other envelope and seal it.

Returning your postal vote

-Credit:StokeSentinel
-Credit:StokeSentinel

Its recommended that you send your postal vote as soon as possible to make sure it is counted. When you're ready to return your postal vote, take it to the postbox yourself.

If you cannot post it yourself, give it to someone you know and trust to post on your behalf, or you can contact the local authority to ask if they can collect it for you.

If you are too late to post it, you can take it to your local polling station by 10pm on election day, or to the Electoral Registration Office before it closes. The Bristol Electoral Registration Office is located on the fifth floor at B Bond Warehouse on Smeaton Road.

If you haven't received or you've lost your postal voting pack

If you have lost or damaged your ballot paper, voting statement or envelopes you can ask your local Electoral Registration Office to post a replacement. You can also collect a replacement from your local Electoral Registration Office up to 5pm on election day.

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