General voting information

You can only vote in elections if your name is on the Register of Electors.


The following people are allowed to vote:

  • if you are eighteen years or over.
  • all British, Commonwealth, Irish and other European Union citizens.
  • overseas electors
  • members of HM Forces and their spouses
  • crown servants employed outside the United Kingdom
  • European citizens are allowed to vote in European and Local Elections only.
  • overseas electors are allowed to vote in Parliamentary and European Elections only.

Poll Cards

Poll cards are delivered shortly before an election. Each member of the household who is eligible to vote should receive a poll card which informs them of the date of the election, where their polling station is and the hours of poll. You do not need to take the poll card with you to be able to vote.

Hours of the Poll

The hours of poll for all elections is now 7.00 am - 10.00 pm

At the polling station

On arrival at your designated polling station, the Presiding Officer will ask you to confirm your name and address and will issue you with a ballot paper.

You should take the ballot paper to the voting booth and mark with a "X" the candidate you wish to vote for. Fold the ballot paper and deposit it in the ballot box.

Types of elections

Local Government

The Local Government Elections for the Metropolitan Borough Council are held every year for three years on the first Thursday in May. One of each of the three seats in the ward is up for election each year. The fourth year is a 'fallow' year when there are no elections. 

Approximately one month prior to the day of any election, the Elections Office publishes an election timetable. This outlines key dates for the election. The most significant dates are those for the nomination of candidates and the deadline for postal and proxy vote applications.

For a local election, the deadline for nominations is noon 19 working days prior to the days of the election.

Parish councils

Elections for the three Parish Councils (Blackrod, Horwich, and Westhoughton) are held every four years. They are held on the same day as the Borough Council Elections. All Parish Council seats are up for election.


Parliamentary Elections (or General Elections) can be held any time the Government chooses within that Government’s term of office, but must be held within five years of the Government coming to office.


European Parliamentary Elections are held in June every five years.

If you require any further information please get in touch using the details on the Contacts tab.

Elections Team

Second Floor

Howell Croft North



Telephone 01204 331248
View map

Opening times

Times are displayed in a 24 hour format.

Open Close

Upcoming activities

Upcoming events