To vote by post you need to complete the postal voting request form.

Postal voting request form

If you are a proxy please complete a proxy to vote by post application form

Proxy to vote by post application form

This involves:

  • printing it out
  • filling it in
  • returning it to the Electoral Registration Office, Civic Centre, St Lukes Avenue, Harrogate HG1 2AE no later than 5pm, 11 working days before an election
  • the postal voting Ballot Paper will then be sent to you between 7 and 8 working days before an election, for you to complete and return

Who can apply for a postal vote?
Anyone aged 18 or over can apply for a postal vote. You do not need a reason to vote by post, but you must be registered on the electoral roll.

Is there a deadline in order to get a postal vote?

You can apply for a postal vote at any time during the year and it can be put in place permanently or for a specific time period and you are able to specify which address your ballot papers are sent to.

What will I receive and when?

When voting by post, you will receive a ballot paper and Postal Vote Statement. You will need to provide your signature and date of birth on the Postal Vote Statement. We check this against the signature and date of birth on your application form so that nobody can fraudulently use your vote.

Where can my postal vote be sent?
A postal vote can be sent to your home address or any other address you give. Postal votes can be sent overseas, but you need to consider whether there is time to receive and return your ballot paper by election day.

How do I cast my vote?
Your ballot paper will be sent to you between 7 and 10 days before the election.

When you receive your ballot paper, mark your vote. You must also complete a postal vote statement with your date of birth and your signature. There is no longer a requirement to have your signature witnessed. Return both documents in the prepaid envelope. If you are sending from abroad, you will need to pay the postage.

Make sure you send back your postal vote so it arrives by election day. If it arrives after voting closes, it will not be counted. If it is too late to post back, you can hand it in at your local polling station or to the returning officer at your local council on election day.

If your postal vote does not arrive or you make a mistake, you are entitled to be issued with a replacement. You can do this by visiting the Elections Office, Harrogate Borough Council, Civic Centre, St Lukes Avenue, Harrogate HG1 2AE before 5pm on the day of the election. You will need to bring with you one form of photo ID or two forms of non-photo ID.

How is it counted?
The signature and date of birth on your postal vote statement will be checked against those details you originally provided. Your vote will not be counted if any statements are found without a date of birth or with a differing signature. Your postal ballot paper will be mixed with all the others before counting begins, so your vote will be kept secret.

What do I do if I can no longer make a signature?
If you are unable to make a signature due to ill health or disability you can still vote by post. You need to apply on a special application from called a postal vote waiver.

What do I do if I already have a postal vote but my signature has changed because I have got married or I have changed my name through deed poll?
You will need to complete another postal vote application. This is so that at an election the signature you supply with your ballot paper will always match the signature provided on your application. If the signatures do not match your vote will not be counted.

Electoral enquiries