Voting on 18 October 2018
Who is eligible? All eligible voters on the Electoral Register whose residence is within the Plan area. Voters who are on the electoral roll do not have to register afresh in order to be able to vote. A map of the Plan area can be viewed here.
To vote in a neighbourhood planning referendum or a local election you must:
- be registered to vote
- be 18 or over on the day of the referendum (‘polling day’)
- be a British, Irish, Commonwealth citizen or EU citizen
- be registered at an address in the area you want to vote in i.e. the Knightsbridge Neighbourhood Area
- not be legally excluded from voting
If you live (or rent) in two different local authority areas (for example because you are a student or have a second home), you may be able to vote in both areas if you spend roughly an equal amount of time in both those areas. To do so, you must register to vote in both areas. The local Electoral Registration Offices will check each application and tell you if you can register in both areas. See: https://www.gov.uk/elections-in-the-uk/local-government. In other words, a person could vote in two neighbourhood planning referendums in two local authority areas on the same day but only once in a UK general election.
If in doubt, please visit Westminster's website or contact Westminster's electoral services team by email [email protected] or call 020 7641 2730 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm). Please note that the phone line can experience high call volumes at times.
Can 2018/19 students vote?
Many people living in Imperial College London's residential halls are already on the local electoral roll, eligible to vote and should receive polling cards by 17 September. New students and others arriving in 'Welcome week' to live in residential halls, who meet the criteria above, can apply to register to vote up to midnight on Tuesday 2 October. People who apply to register should receive:
- an immediate automated acknowledgement from the government website;
- a letter of confirmation from Westminster City Council within a week, if they are successful; and
- a poll card posted by Westminster City Council on Friday 5 October, if they are successful.
If you're concerned that you haven't heard, please email questions to [email protected].
When can I vote? Between 7am and 10pm on Thursday 18 October 2018.
Where can I vote? The polling station will be at Kent House Knightsbridge in Rutland Gardens, London SW7 1BX. It is the first building on your left as you pass through the security barrier at the top of Rutland Gardens opposite the Hyde Park Barracks.
What if I will be on holiday in October? You could request a postal vote or a proxy vote if you are registered to vote. People might wish to request a proxy vote for one-off proxy vote if they expect to be travelling in the first half of October so would miss the postal vote arriving and the opportunity to vote in person on 18 October*. More details here:
- Register to vote (by midnight on Tuesday 2 October) if you didn't receive a polling card in September.
- Postal vote application form (by 5pm on Wednesday 3 October) if you haven't previously organised one.
- Postal proxy vote (by 5pm on Wednesday 3 October) if you want one.
- Proxy vote application form (by 5pm on Wednesday 10 October)* if you want one.
- More information on Westminster City Council's website.
Copy of postal vote application form showing Westminster's email address etc.
The Forum recommends returning scanned and completed application forms to Westminster City Council by email at [email protected]. The postal address, if you have time before the deadline, is: Electoral Services, Westminster City Council, 2nd floor, City Hall, 5 Strand, London WC2N 5HR. You can fax your form to 020 7641 2917.
*How do I apply for a one-off proxy vote? To request a one-off proxy vote please submit the proxy application form by 5pm on Wednesday 10 October including: write 18 October 2018 in section 3(b); tick or cross 'All elections you are entitled to vote at' in section 4; and then complete section 7A on page two e.g. 'I am away on holiday'. In choosing a proxy 'appointee', the proxy 'appointer' should bear in mind that:
- the proxy 'appointee' must also be registered to vote in this referendum; and
- the proxy 'appointee' can be proxy for up to two people (i.e. proxy appointers) plus their close relatives (in addition to being able to vote themselves).
Please note that a one-off proxy 'appointer' with a postal vote needs also to cancel the postal vote by 5pm on Wednesday 3 October by telling Westminster City Council (by email) and stating that they wish their original postal vote to continue (if they do) once this referendum ballot is over. A proxy 'appointer' could make such a request when submitting the scanned proxy application form to [email protected].
What is the deadline for registering to vote? The closing date for registering to vote will be midnight on Tuesday 2 October. Details on Westminster's website.
What about postal votes? Any voters who already have an existing postal vote will receive voting papers via post as usual. If you don't post your postal vote, you can still take it to the polling station at Kent House Knightsbridge, Rutland Gardens, London SW7 1BX by 10pm on Thursday 18 October. More details on Westminster's website.
Want to change to postal vote or proxy? The closing date to request a postal proxy vote will be 5pm on Wednesday 3 October. However, a proxy vote (for someone to vote, in person, on someone's behalf) can still be requested until 5pm on Wednesday 10 October. A proxy, once appointed, can request a postal vote up to 5pm on Wednesday 3 October. More details on Westminster's website.
Polling cards All eligible voters will be posted polling cards. If voting in person, the polling card does not have to be taken to the polling station, but it saves time if you take it and show it to the clerk. Note: The initial posting of polling cards took place on Thursday 13 September 2018.
The ballot paper will ask a simple 'Yes/No' question: 'Do you want Westminster City Council to use the Neighbourhood Plan for the Knightsbridge Area to help it decide planning applications in the neighbourhood area?'.
Unsure if you are eligible? There is no online facility to check this. Telephone 020 7641 2730 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm), the number for Westminster's electoral services team, and ask for help. They have a ‘look up’ system of the Electoral Register. Or visit: https://www.westminster.gov.uk/planning-referendums.
Disclaimer: Guidance or instructions from Westminster City Council about voting takes precedence over guidance published on this website.
Updated on 8 October 2018