UK Elections 2024: When Does Voting Start In England, Northern Ireland, Wales And Scotland?

The UK general election on 4 July 2024 features key deadlines, voter ID requirements, and absentee voting options. Polling stations open from 7 am to 10 pm, with exit poll results expected shortly after. Voters must register by 18 June and can apply for postal or proxy votes by 19 and 26 June, respectively.
Rishi Sunak

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak campaigns ahead of the crucial UK general election on 4 July 2024.

Photo : AP
The 2024 UK general election is scheduled for July 4. The key deadlines are fast approaching, so here's a comprehensive guide to when voting starts across England, Northern Ireland, Wales, and Scotland. Here's what voters need to know:
Key Dates and Timeline
The election timetable spans 25 working days. It commences with the dissolution of Parliament on 30 May. Here are the crucial dates leading up to polling day:
  • 30 May (Thursday): Dissolution of Parliament and return of writs.
  • 31 May (Friday): Returning officers receive writs.
  • 4 June (Tuesday): Last day for publishing notice of election (by 4 pm).
  • 7 June (Friday): Deadline for submitting or withdrawing a nomination (4 pm) and publication of the statement of persons nominated (5 pm).
  • 18 June (Tuesday): Deadline to register to vote (by midnight).
  • 19 June (Wednesday): Deadline for new postal vote applicants or amending existing absent voting arrangements.
  • 26 June (Wednesday): Deadline for new applications to vote by proxy (5 pm) and for voter authority certificates (VACs, by 5 pm).
  • 28 June (Friday): First day voters can apply for a replacement for a lost postal vote.
  • 4 July (Thursday): Polling day – voting stations open from 7 am to 10 pm. Deadlines for emergency proxy applications, re-issue of spoilt or lost postal votes, and production of temporary VACs are all at 5 pm.
Dissolution and Writs
Dissolution brings an end to the current Parliament. This leads to the issuing of writs, which authorize the election. These writs are delivered to he returning officers in each of the 650 constituencies. The officers are responsible for managing the election process locally.
Registering to Vote and Absentee Voting
In order to participate in the upcoming election, voters must register by midnight on 18 June. Applications for postal votes close at 5 pm on 19 June. The deadline for proxy vote applications is 5 pm on 26 June. In case of unforeseen circumstances, fore those who require emergency proxies, applications can be made until 5 pm on polling day.
Voter ID Requirements:
Voters must present a valid form of photo ID at polling stations. Acceptable IDs include passports, driving licenses, Older or Disabled Person's bus passes, and Oyster 60+ cards. Those who lack a valid ID can apply for a free voter authority certificate by 26 June.
Polling Day
On 4 July, polling stations across the UK will be open from 7 am to 10 pm. In case they have lost or spoiled their postal votes, voters are eligible to request replacements up to 5 pm on polling day. Temporary VACs can be issued until 10 pm. However, voters must arrive at polling stations before closing to cast their vote.
Counting and Results
Once the polls close at 10 p.m., exit poll results will be announced. This offers an early indication of the election outcome. The first constituency results will start coming in around 11 pm. A majority, however, is expected by early morning on 5 July.
The upcoming 2024 general election is a major event- one that will offer voters a chance to mold the future of the UK. The deadlines and procedures are clear, and in place. It is essential for voters in England, Northern Ireland, Wales, and Scotland to be prepared and informed ahead of 4 July.
    Jenel Treza Albuquerque author

    Hi there! I’m Jenel. During my Bachelor’s, I majored in Journalism and Psychology. It was my love for literature that prompted me to pursue a career i...View More

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