Suffolk: Voting well under way in county council elections as postal ballots come in

Votes are being verified

Votes are being verified

ELECTION day for the county council may still be five days away, but political managers in the county believe between a third and a half of all the votes could already have been cast.

About one in six voters across the county have requested postal votes. All were sent out by the start of this week, and politicians know that most people who request postal votes use them – and vote almost as soon as the ballot paper arrives.

With the turnout for the election expected to be somewhere between 30% and 50%, the number of postal votes suggests that between a third and half of all the votes in the election have already been completed.

Ipswich Labour agent John Cook said: “We know that in the borough there are just under 17,000 postal votes – out of an electorate of 98,000 – and while the figures aren’t quite the same in the rest of the county, the proportion isn’t that different.

“And postal voters get their ballot papers in very quickly – I often tell my party members that you won’t win an election on the day that postal ballots arrive, but you can certainly lose it.”

Conservative agent Peter Burgoyne agreed that postal votes were crucial: “We were out in Clare last night and there were a lot of people there who had already voted.

“There are always a lot of postal votes in Ipswich, but there are substantial numbers in the other districts of the county too.

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“I would agree that in some places up to half the votes could have already been sent in,” he added.

For those who are voting in person, polling stations will be open next Thursday from 7am-10pm.

You do not have to take your polling card to vote – but if you do have it, it should be easier for officials to find your name on the electoral roll.

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