Today is the day for voters across Birmingham, Sandwell and Solihull as polls for the 2022 Local Elections have opened.
Residents will get the chance to head to the polls to have their say on who will represent them on their council.
Ahead of your trip to the polling station, here’s what you need to know about where you can go to vote, what time polling stations open and close, and some of the rules on what you can and can’t do when at a polling station.
When are the local elections?
The date for the next local election for residents in Birmingham City, Sandwell, and Solihull Council areas is today, Thursday, 5 May 2022.
Polling stations in the area will open at 7am, closing at 10pm.
All three of these councils have seats that will be contested in the upcoming election.
What time do polling stations open and close?
The opening and closing times for polling stations at the 2022 Local Elections are the same throughout the country.
Voters can head to polling stations to place their vote between 7am and 10pm.
Where is my polling station?
Ahead of polling day, you should receive a polling card which states the address of the polling station you will visit to vote on 5 May.
Please note that you can only vote at this polling station.
If you do not know which is your designated polling station, each council has a feature on their website where you can search for your station.
You don’t need to take your polling card with you to the polling station.
What can I do in a polling station?
The Electoral Commision, the organisation that oversees electoral procedure in the UK, has rules on what people can and can’t do in a polling station.
A selection of their rules are listed below.
- You can take your child to the polling station with you, this is in fact encouraged to teach them about democracy, but they cannot fill out your ballot sheet for you.
- You can wear political slogans on clothing when voting, but you must leave the polling station immediately after
- Taking photos in polling stations is not recommended as it could give away who someone else is voting for, and this is illegal.
For more information on polling stations, visit the Electoral Commission website.
How do I vote in person?
The deadline to register to vote in this election was 14 April, therefore if you are not currently registered you will be unable to vote on 5 May.
For those who are registered and have decided they will vote in the upcoming election in person, you will receive a polling card sent to your home.
This card will explain to you on which day you can go to vote as well as the address of your polling station.
Once you have arrived at your polling station (these are normally public buildings, such as schools, leisure centres, community halls) you will be given a ballot paper.
On the paper there will be a list of candidates for which you can cast your vote.
Once you have filled in the paper, you will be asked to fold it over and place it in a ballot box.
You are not allowed to discuss your vote in the polling station.