Thursday 6 May 2021

Vote in the May 2021 London elections

Your vote matters, make sure you're in

On Thursday 6 May 2021, you get the chance to say who runs London for the next three years

Register to vote

The election to elect a Mayor for London and 25 London Assembly Members is scheduled to be held on Thursday 6 May 2021.

Eligible voters in Bexley will be able to vote for:

  • The Mayor of London
  • Constituency London Assembly Member
  • London-wide Assembly Member

One Mayor, 14 constituency assembly members and 11 London-wide assembly members will be elected.

Eligibility to vote

You can only vote at the GLA Elections if you are: 

  • registered to vote
  • live in London
  • at least 18 years old on the day of the elections
  • a British citizen, EU or a Commonwealth citizen* who has or does not require leave to remain in the UK

* The list of qualifying countries, British Crown Dependencies and British Overseas Territories can be found on the Electoral Commission website

Unlike UK Parliamentary general elections, British citizens living overseas can’t vote in Mayor of London or London Assembly elections.

You can register to vote at the GLA Elections if:

  • you are 17 or over (but you cannot vote until your 18th birthday); and
  • you are a British, Irish, European Union or Commonwealth Citizen

Information for voters

  • deadline for voter registration – 11:59pm on Monday 19 April
  • if you have registered to vote at your property and have not moved since, you do not need to re-register to vote
  • if you have moved home recently and have not registered to vote at your new address, you must do so by 11:59pm on Monday 19 April
  • you can check if you are registered to vote by contacting the Electoral Services Team on 020 8303 7777, or by email at elections.office@bexley.gov.uk
  • register by Monday 19 April or you won’t be able to vote on Thursday 6 May
  • it takes less three minutes to register online It helps to have your National Insurance number to hand, you can find it on your payslip, P60, or letters about tax, pensions and benefits
  • don’t leave registration until the last minute, just in case you have any problems

Postal voters

  • deadline to apply for a postal vote – 5pm on Tuesday 20 April
  • postal vote applicants must already be registered to vote. Forms can be downloaded from the GOV.UK website
  • only postal votes which arrive back by 10pm on polling day will be counted
  • forgot to send your postal vote back in time? Completed and sealed postal vote packs can be dropped into any polling station in the same voting area on polling day, but ideally to your local polling station
  • lost your postal vote or it didn’t arrive?
    • replacement packs can be issued from Thursday 29 April until 5pm on polling day
    • from 5pm on the day before polling, replacement postal ballot packs will only be issued in person at Civic Offices, 2 Watling Street, Bexleyheath DA6 7AT 
    • you will need to bring proof of identification: one photographic ID such as a passport or driving licence, or two pieces of ID which confirm your name and address such as a bank statement, utility bill or official letter

Proxy voters

  • deadline to apply for a proxy vote – 5pm on Tuesday 27 April
  • a proxy voter is someone you trust who you appoint to vote on your behalf
  • your proxy must be eligible to vote in the election and able to vote in person at your polling station, or need to apply to cast their proxy vote by post. They will receive a letter or poll card at their address giving them the necessary details
  • your proxy will receive a letter or poll card at their address giving them the necessary details
  • postal voters are not eligible to apply for a proxy vote
  • emergency proxy votes may be available from after the proxy deadline until 5pm on polling day but only under specific extenuating circumstances, find details on the Electoral Commission website 

On polling day

  • polling stations are open from 7am to 10pm
  • you can only cast your vote at the polling station you are registered at. The details will be printed on your poll card
  • you don’t need your poll card with you to be able to vote, but it does speed the process up
  • make sure to check your poll card, as due to the current Covid 19 restrictions, some of the polling station rooms and entrances may have changed

What does the Mayor of London do?

The Mayor runs London; from policing and housing to environment and transport.

The Assembly holds the Mayor to account on your behalf. It is made up of 14 Constituency Members who represent different areas of London.

There are also 11 London-wide members who represent the city as a whole.

Important dates

Key dates for the GLA Elections 2021
Date Event
22 March

Publication of notice/s of election at Civic Offices, 2 Watling Street, Bexleyheath, DA6 7AT.

Candidate nominations may be accepted at Bromley Civic Offices, until 4pm on Tuesday 30 March.

The London Elects website outlines eligibility to stand for election in each type of poll.

24 March Poll cards issued to all electors registered to vote by 24 March 2021.
30 March Candidate nominations close - 4pm deadline.
30 March Official Statement of Persons (and parties) Nominated lists will be published on the London Elects website between close of nominations and 4pm on Thursday 1 April.
19 April Last date for voter registration – 11:59pm deadline.
20 April Last date to apply for a postal vote or proxy postal, or make changes to existing postal and proxy votes - 5pm deadline.
22 April Postal vote issue, including service voters.
27 April Last date to apply for a proxy vote (not emergency proxy) – 5pm deadline.
29 April First day to reissue any lost or spoilt postal ballot papers.
6 May - Polling Day

Polling day – polls open 7am to 10pm. Electors will be given three ballot papers to cast their votes in these elections.

Emergency proxy vote applications for medical or work-related emergencies will only be accepted in person at Civic Offices, 2 Watling Street, Bexleyheath DA6 7AT until 5pm. More details on the circumstances in which an emergency proxy may be requested can be found on the Electoral Commission website.

Until 5pm, last day that electors can apply for a replacement for spoilt or lost postal vote. Replacement postal ballot packs will only be issued in person to LB Bexley borough electors at Civic Offices, 2 Watling Street, Bexleyheath DA6 7AT.

7 May

The count and results declaration for Constituency Assembly Members from LB Bexley borough will take place at ExCel London.

Results for the Mayor and London-wide Assembly Members will be declared at City Hall.

Voting

Voting system

The Mayor of London poll uses the Supplementary Voting System.

Voters can make a first and second choice.

If no candidate gets more than 50% of the first-choice votes, only the top two candidates go through to a second round of counting.

If the first-choice candidate on a ballot paper is eliminated, and the second choice is for one of the top two, then the second choice is also counted.

London Assembly members are elected using the Additional Member system.

Electors vote once for a constituency member and once for a London-wide representative.

You will be given three ballot papers:

  • Pink to vote for the Mayor – you vote for your first choice and a second choice candidate
  • Yellow to vote for your Constituency London Assembly Member – you choose one candidate
  • Orange to vote for a London-wide Assembly Member – you choose one candidate

Student voters

Higher education students may be eligible to register to vote at both their home and university/college address. If a student’s home and university addresses are in two different local authority areas, they can vote in local elections in both areas. They will need to consider whether to register to vote in both areas and whether to make postal or proxy vote applications as necessary. 

More details can be found on the Electoral Commission website

Who cannot vote?

The following groups are legally excluded from voting in local elections in England:

  • a convicted person (though remand prisoners, as yet unconvicted prisoners and civil prisoners can vote if they are on the electoral register)
  • have been found guilty within the previous five years of corrupt or illegal practices in connection with an election

Postal voting

Once registered, should you wish to vote by post, a completed postal vote application form must reach our office by 5pm on Tuesday 20 April 2021.

Proxy voting

Proxy voting is where you ask someone else to cast a vote on your behalf, for example, if you cannot make it to the polling station yourself.

Once registered, should you wish to vote by proxy, a completed proxy vote application form must reach our office by 5pm on Tuesday 27 April 2021.

However, if you already have a postal vote, the deadline is 5pm on Tuesday 20 April 2021.

Polling stations

We are conducting all necessary assessments and putting into place measures to ensure that all polling stations are safe on Thursday 6 May 2021.

Polling stations will be open from 7am to 10pm.

There will be 123 polling stations, open across Bexley’s local authority area. Our polling stations include schools, church halls, temporary portacabins and pubs.

Voters should check their poll card for the location details of their polling station.

Where possible, posters will be displayed at a previous venue directing people to the correct location.

Covid-19 measures at Bexley’s polling stations will include:

  • separate entrances and exits, where possible
  • altered layouts to allow for social distancing when waiting to vote and when completing a ballot paper, but still ensuring electors can cast their vote in secret
  • polling station staff wearing PPE
  • voters asked to wear face-covering and use hand sanitiser when they enter the polling station
  • voters are encouraged to bring their own pen or pencil
  • polling booths will be regularly sanitised

These measures may mean electors have to wait for longer than usual to be able to cast their vote.

Busy times in polling stations often include 7am to 9.30am, lunchtime, 3.30pm to 4.30pm and 6pm to 8pm.

Trying to avoid these peak times may mean voters have to wait for a shorter period of time.

Anyone queuing to vote at a polling station by 10pm will still be able to vote.

Pen or pencil

If you do go to a polling station, please comply with all government guidance including wearing a face mask and maintaining social distancing at all times.

Please also feel free to bring your own pen or pencil with you to mark your ballot papers. If you do not have a pencil, when you arrive, we will provide a pencil for you that you can either take home with you, or if you prefer, leave it in a receptacle at the polling station.

Due to the need to maintain social distancing, it may take longer than usual when at your polling station. You may also be required to queue.

If you do not wish to go to a polling station, you can vote by post, or by proxy.

Candidates and Agents

Bromley & Bexley Constituency Candidates and Agents

Further information can be obtained from the Constituency Returning Officer at:

Bromley Civic Centre
Stockwell Close
Bromley
BR1 3UH

Key information for candidates

The Electoral Commission website outlines eligibility to stand for election in each type of poll. It also publishes comprehensive guidance and resources for candidates and Agents for all polls. This includes rules on spending, donations, and campaigning.
 

Nominations for London Mayoral and Assembly elections

Full details of qualifications and disqualifications to stand for election as a Mayor of London candidate, a Constituency Assembly Member candidate or a London-wide Assembly Member candidate are outlined on the Electoral Commission website.

Covid-19 safety measures will be in place when nominations are delivered. These will be confirmed in advance and may mean the process takes longer than usual. You should factor this into your timings, particularly in areas with multiple combinations of polls.

The Greater London Returning Officer and Constituency Returning Officers may offer informal checks of completed nomination papers to identify anything that could cause a nomination to be rejected.

If you change your mind and no longer want to stand for election after your valid nomination has been accepted, you can withdraw. You must do this by 4pm on Tuesday 30 March.

Any information on nomination papers must be true to the best of your knowledge. Providing a false statement could invalidate your election and is punishable by an unlimited fine and/or imprisonment.

Notices

Notices will appear here in a timely manner and will link to London Elects website.

Postal vote opening sessions

You and your Election Agents are entitled to attend the opening of returned postal votes.

You may also appoint Postal Vote Agents, to attend openings on your behalf.

Opening sessions will take place before polling day, as well as on polling day itself, at:

Civic Offices
2 Watling Street
Bexleyheath
DA6 7AT

The dates planned for the opening of postal votes are as follows:

Day Date Time
Friday 23 April 2021 2pm
Monday 26 April 2021 10am
Tuesday 27 April 2021 10am
Wednesday 28 April 2021 10am
Thursday 29 April 2021 10am
Friday 30 April 2021 10am
Saturday 1 May 2021 10am
Monday 3 May 2021 10am
Tuesday 4 May 2021 10am
Wednesday 5 May 2021 10am
Thursday 6 May 2021 10am
Thursday 6 May 2021 2pm

A final opening session will be held after the polls have closed for postal votes handed into polling stations.

Please contact the Electoral Services Team on 020 8303 7777, before attending any sessions, as these may be postponed at short notice if it is deemed necessary to do so.

The Returning Officer will confirm in advance of any Covid-19 safety measures you will be expected to follow to keep you and others safe.

Full details of the process and what you and your Agents or sub Agents can and cannot do during a postal vote opening are detailed in this Electoral Commission guide.

Polling day

You and your election Agent are entitled to observe proceedings inside polling stations or appoint Agents to attend polling stations on your behalf. The Constituency Returning Officer will advise you how many polling Agents will be allowed in each polling station depending on the size and Covid-19 restrictions.

The Constituency Returning Officer will confirm in advance any Covid-19 safety measures you will be expected to follow to keep you and others safe.
The Consituency Returning Officer will give election Agents a list of polling stations before the poll. A polling station finder will also be available on the London Elects website.

Your appointed Agents can arrive at any time to observe proceedings. This includes watching the Presiding Officer show the empty ballot box before it is sealed ahead of 7am and being present at the close of poll. At this point, your Agents may also attach their seal to the ballot box/es and any close of poll packets made up by the Presiding Officer.

Anyone attending a polling station has a duty to maintain the secrecy of the ballot.

Breaching the secrecy requirements can lead to an unlimited fine or six months in prison.

The count

Candidates and election Agents have the right to be present at the count. 

  • Constituency Assembly member candidates and their election Agent or a sub-Agent may attend the constituency count at the ExCel Centre, London
  • London-wide Assembly member and Mayoral candidates and their election Agent or a sub-Agent may attend all the count venues and the central count collation at City Hall

You can invite one other person to attend the count with you as your guest, and may also appoint counting Agents to attend on your behalf. The Greater London Returning Officer will tell you how many counting Agents you can appoint and how to do it.

Counting Agents observe the counting process and make sure it is accurate.

Anyone attending the count has a duty to maintain the secrecy of the count and you will be provided with further details on the restrictions.

The Greater London Returning Officer, or Constituency Returning Officer will confirm in advance any Covid-19 safety measures you will be expected to follow to keep you and others safe.

Votes will be counted electronically. This involves scanning ballot papers and using specially designed software to count the votes.

Results

The votes for all constituencies in London will be counted during the day, on Friday 7 May 2021.

The Votes for the Bromley & Bexley Constituency will be counted at the ExCel Centre, London.

Once the results have been declared they will be available on the London Elects website.