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  • Writer's pictureFranck For Gower

The Ultimate Voter’s Guide to the 2024 UK General Election - Your Questions Answered

What is the General Election?

A general election is held to elect Members of Parliament (MPs) to the House of Commons, the lower house of Parliament in the United Kingdom. The UK is divided into 650 constituencies, each electing one MP to represent local interests and issues at Westminster. Most candidates are affiliated with a political party, although some run as independents.

How does voting work?

In the general election, each eligible voter has one vote to cast for a candidate in their local constituency. The voting takes place at designated polling stations, or by post for those who have registered to vote this way. The "first past the post" system is used, meaning the candidate with the most votes in each constituency wins a seat in Parliament.

Can I vote?

To be eligible to vote in the general election, you must:

  • Be registered to vote.

  • Be 18 years of age or older on polling day (the specific day when voters go to vote in an election).

  • Either be a British, Irish, or qualifying Commonwealth citizen with leave to enter or stay in the UK or who does not require such leave.

  • Or have permission to enter or stay in the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man

  • Be a resident at a UK address, or a British citizen living abroad who has been registered to vote in the UK in the last 15 years.

  • Not be legally excluded from voting (e.g., certain convicted prisoners, anyone found guilty of corrupt or illegal practices).

Why should I vote?

Voting in a general election is your chance to influence the future direction of the country. Each vote contributes to selecting the representatives who will make decisions on laws, policies, and issues that affect everyday life, from healthcare and education to transportation and housing. Voting is not only a key right in a democracy but also a way to ensure your voice is heard in debates that shape public policy. By participating in elections, you help uphold democratic values and contribute to a governance system that reflects the will of the people.

How do I register to vote?

You can register to vote online via the government's official website or by requesting a paper form from your local Electoral Registration Office. 

You will need your National Insurance number to complete registration, but you can still register if you don't have one.

How do I know my constituency?

Following the recent boundary changes, you can find out which constituency you belong to by entering your postcode on the Electoral Commission's website.

Who are the candidates in my constituency?

The list of candidates for each constituency will be released by the Election Commission after the close of nominations on Friday 07 June 2024. 

For residents of the Gower Constituency, Franck Banza is standing as the Candidate for the Welsh Liberal Democrats.

How will I vote?

There are three main ways to vote:

Do I need anything else to vote?

Starting with this election, you must present a valid photo ID at the polling station. Acceptable IDs include passports, driving licences, and various concessionary travel passes. 

Outdated IDs are acceptable if you are still recognisable. If you lack any suitable form of ID, you can apply for a free Voter Authority Certificate.

Where will I vote?

Your polling card, which you will receive before the election if you are registered to vote, will tell you the location of your polling station. If you haven’t received your card as election day approaches, contact your local council for information.

What do I do on the day of the election?

Polling stations will be open from 7 am to 10 pm on Thursday, 04 July 2024. 

Ensure you bring your ID and be ready to vote for the candidate who best represents your interests and concerns.

Key Dates to Remember:

  • 18 June: Deadline to register to vote.

  • 19 June: Deadline to apply for a postal vote.

  • 26 June: Deadlines for applying for a proxy vote and a Voter ID certificate.

  • 04 July: Polling day.

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