Please note: The system of electoral registration changed to Individual Electoral Registration (IER) from 10 June 2014. See below for more details.
Who can Vote at an Election?
Only persons whose name appears on the Register of Electors are entitled to vote.
To vote at Parliamentary or Local Elections (District, Parish and County Elections), a person must also:
- Be eighteen years or older on polling day.
- Be a British, Commonwealth, Irish or European Union citizen.
- Not be subject to any legal incapacity to vote, such as being in prison.
European Union citizens (other than British or Irish Citizens) are only entitled to vote at Local Elections and European Parliamentary Elections. There is no entitlement to vote at UK Parliamentary Elections. Overseas electors (eligible British citizens living abroad) may register and vote at Parliamentary and European Parliamentary Elections only for a period of up to 15 years after they have left the country. There is no entitlement to vote at Local Elections.
You need to register at the address you are living at unless you are living overseas, in the Armed Forces or a Crown Servant. If you are a British citizen resident overseas, or in the Armed Services, or are a Crown Servant serving overseas, find out about registering to vote and voting by visiting the Electoral Commission website.
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How do I Vote?
You will receive a poll card prior to the Election advising you of your Electoral Number, the date of the Election, the name of the polling station and how to cast your vote.
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How often are Elections held?
There are different rules for each type of Election:
UK Parliamentary Elections
The maximum period allowed between UK Parliamentary Elections is five years. There is no statutory minimum period. The last UK Parliamentary Election in the Thirsk and Malton Constituency was held in May 2015.
European Parliamentary Elections
European Parliamentary Elections are held every five years with the last elections taking place on 22 May 2014. View the results for the Ryedale local counting area.
Local Government Elections
Elections for the District, Parishes and County are held every four years, normally on the first Thursday in May. The last ordinary Elections of District and Parish Councillors in Ryedale was held in May 2015.
Ryedale District Council Elections
Ryedale is divided into 20 Wards for the purposes of District Elections, with each Ward returning between one and three Councillors. There are 30 Councillors in total representing the District of Ryedale and all out Elections are held every four years. The last District Council Election was held on 7 May 2015.
The District of Ryedale is divided into 121 Parishes of which 91 Parishes are large enough to have their own Parish Councillors. The remaining Parishes hold regular Parish Meetings. Every Parish must have an annual Parish Meeting, which all Local Government electors for the Parish are entitled to attend. Elections for Parish/Town Council Elections are held at the same time as District Elections and Parish/Town Councillors are elected for a term of four years.
County Council Elections
The District of Ryedale is divided into six County Divisions, each returning one elected Councillor to North Yorkshire County Council. The six Divisions are Hovingham and Sheriff Hutton; Kirkbymoorside; Malton; Norton; Thornton Dale and the Wolds; Pickering. North Yorkshire County Council Elections are every four years and are normally held on the first Thursday in May. The last County Council Election was on 2 May 2013.
The Council is responsible for compiling the Register of Electors for the District of Ryedale. If you are not on the Electoral Register you will not be eligible to vote in any Election. For further information contact Democratic Services on 01653 600666 or e-mail elections.
Police and Crime Commissioner Elections
The Police and Crime Commissioner elections took place across Yorkshire in May 2016 .
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Absent Voting Applications
From 1st January 2007, every new absent voting application must include the applicant's signature and date of birth to be valid.
The Regulations prescribe that:
- All applications require the date of birth to be supplied in a dd/mm/yyyy format
- All applications must have the signature supplied.
- Where a postal vote is to be sent to an address other than the registered address, a reason for this redirection must be given.
- Where applicable, please give the reason why a signature is unable to be provided and the name and address of any person who has assisted the application.
These provisions are in addition to the existing requirements for absent vote applications, namely that:
- They must be in writing and be dated by the applicant
- They must include the full name of the applicant
- They must include the registration address or for a postal proxy application, the elector's name and address and the proxy's name and address
- They must include the address where the postal ballot paper should be sent, and if this is not the registration address, a reason for this re-direction
- On proxy applications, they must include the reason for the application and attestation if it is for more than a single election.
Where an applicant is unable to provide a signature, they may request that the Electoral Registration Officer waive the requirement for a signature. Any such request must include the reason(s) for it, along with the name and address of any person who has assisted them with the completion of the application.
Existing Absent Voters:
By law, all Electoral Registration Officers had to send a Notice after 1st January 2007, to all existing postal, proxy and postal proxy voters, requiring them to supply a specimen of their signature and their date of birth. Reminders were sent to anyone who had not replied, and if no further response was received from the elector, by law the postal/proxy voting status of that elector was cancelled with effect from 42 days after the initial Notice.
Timescales for Making Absent Vote Applications Prior to Polling:
The latest date for making a new application for a postal vote is 5 pm, eleven days before Polling Day.
The latest date for making a new application for a proxy vote is 5 pm, six days before Polling Day.
The latest date for amending an existing postal or postal proxy application is 5 pm eleven days before Polling Day.
In the case of a medical emergency on the grounds of unforeseen physical incapacity, a proxy application can be received up until 5pm on the day of poll.
Electoral Commission's Website
For further information on voting please visit the Electoral Commission's website via the links below:
About my Vote.