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Preparations well underway for General Election

Posted on 11 Nov 2019

Preparations are firmly underway to ensure the UK Parliamentary Election on December 12 goes as smoothly as possible in North Ayrshire.

Although the election has been called at short notice, North Ayrshire’s Returning Officer Craig Hatton says work carried out behind the scenes means preparations are well in hand to ensure an efficient democratic vote.

Mr Hatton said: “We have been well aware that there was a strong possibility for an early election, so we put in place the foundations to ensure we were in a strong position if one was called.

“These arrangements have now accelerated and we are well placed to deal with the challenge of holding of the UK Parliamentary Election on December 12.

“This will be the first Parliamentary Election held in December since 1923 and that presents its own set of challenges. Contingency plans are being put in place to take account of potential winter conditions.

“Given that we will be entering the busy pre-Christmas period, I would urge those who vote by post to ensure they return their ballot as soon as possible. This is the busiest time of year for the Royal Mail so ensuring ballots are returned quickly will make a big difference.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to remind those who are not currently registered to vote, that they still have time to join the Electoral Register.

“No one should miss out on their right to be part of the democratic process - simply go to www.gov.uk/register-to-vote where registration takes about five minutes.”

The deadline for registering to vote is Tuesday, November 26, while the deadline for registering a new postal vote and postal proxy applications is 5pm on the same date. For applications to vote by proxy (not postal proxy or emergency proxies), the deadline is 5pm on Wednesday, December 4.

The Notice of Election for the UK General Election was published on Friday, 8 November, and prospective parliamentary candidates can put their names forward before the nomination deadline on Thursday, 14 November.

A full list of polling places is available on the North Ayrshire Council website however two changes are being made at this election: 

  • Voters who would normally vote at Woodwynd Hall, Kilwinning, will now cast their ballot at Kilwinning Academy.
  • Residents who would normally vote at Beith Parish Church Hall will now vote in the church building itself.

North Ayrshire Returning Officer Craig Hatton is writing to those affected to highlight the change of location.

Polling stations will open 7am to 10pm on Thursday, December 12. It is anticipated that a declaration will be made in the early hours of Friday, December 13.