Absent Votes - Postal & Proxy
Postal Votes are available to residents on the electoral roll, either as a one-off, for a set period of time, or permanently.
You will need to complete an application form (available to download below or to collect from the Council offices) stating where you would like the ballot paper to be sent. Regulations require applicants to supply a date of birth and current signature to help prevent fraudulent claims. If you are unable to supply a consistent signature or have any other questions please contact the helpline on 01962 848 125. Please note in order to cancel an absent vote, you must put this in writing in an email or a letter to the electoral services team.
Applications, amendments or cancellations of postal votes must reach the Electoral Registration Officer at City Offices, Colebrook Street, 11 working days before the election. You can download an application form on the right
Proxy votes (where someone else votes on your behalf) are also available as an option if you are unable to vote yourself.
In order to apply for a proxy for an election, applications need to be at our office by no later than 5pm, 6 working days before the election is to be held.
You can only apply for a long-term proxy vote if you have a specific reason such as a disability or being overseas; these applications also require attestation to validate the application. If you have a long term illness or disability which makes it difficult for you to vote in person or by post, your application must be supported by one of the following; either a registered medical practitioner, a registered nurse, a registered dentist, a registered dispensing optician or optometrist, a registered chiropractor, a person registered under the Health Professions Order 2001 or a Christian Science practitioner. If you are in a residential home or sheltered housing, the matron, home care director or warden may support your application. If your job or educational course, or that of your spouse, takes you away from home for long periods (e.g. travelling salesman, long distance lorry driver), your application must be supported by either your employer or your spouse's employer. In the case of a study course then by the institution holding the course. If you are self-employed your supporter must be 18 or over, know you and must not be related to you. Your application DOES NOT have to be supported by someone else if you are registered Blind or in receipt of the Higher Rate Mobility Allowance, however you must give the relevant number.
You can apply for a proxy for just one election, but you must give a specific reason, for example you will be on holiday or away due to work and these applications do not need any attestation. If you are suddenly incapacitated or taken ill, you can apply to vote by proxy for medical reasons up until 5pm on polling day. Please contact the Electoral Services Unit if you require an emergency proxy.
The person you select as proxy must be legally entitled and willing to vote for you and will be sent a 'proxy poll card' which allows them to vote on your behalf at the polling station on election day. Alternatively, they may vote by post if desired.
As with postal votes, Regulations require applicants for a proxy vote to supply a date of birth and current signature to help prevent fraudulent claims. If you are unable to supply this or have any other questions please contact the helpline on 01962 848 125. Completed application forms must be received six working days before election day.