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Accessibility at polling stations

Everyone should be able to register and cast their vote without facing barriers. They should be able to vote on their own and in secret. The Elections Act 2022 introduces changes to further assist disabled voters at polling stations.

What's new

Disabled voters will be able to choose anyone who is over 18 to accompany them in the polling station to help them vote. You can also ask the person in charge of the polling station, known as the Presiding Officer, to help you fill in your ballot paper. They are legally bound by the Requirement for Secrecy and your vote will remain secret.

We will also take all reasonable steps to support voters with disabilities to improve the range and quality of support.

Find your polling station

To find which ward or parish council area you live in, please check our interactive map (opens Peterborough Arcgis system). Please go to the 'council boundaries' drop down where you can select options to view your ward, boundary, parish council area, nearest polling station etc.

Your poll card also shows your ward and polling station.

Accessing the polling station

  • We visit all polling stations in advance and assess them in terms of accessibility
  • Temporary ramps are put in place to support access for voters who use a wheelchair or have difficulty using steps
  • Where possible, polling stations are identified which have car parking provision so that disabled voters may park as close as possible to the polling station

Information for voters

To help voters understand the voting process and how to mark their ballot paper, we provide the following at each polling station:

  • A notice at the polling station providing instructions on how to vote at the election
  • A notice in each polling booth providing information on how to mark the ballot paper at the election
  • Large print sample copies of the ballot paper displayed inside the polling station to assist voters who are partially sighted and also voters who would like some time to look at the ballot paper before entering the polling booth
  • An enlarged handheld copy of the ballot paper - we can give this to voters who are partially sighted to take into the polling booth for reference when marking their ballot paper

Support within the polling station

Every polling station will have the following equipment and support in place:

  • Chair / seating for voters who cannot stand for long periods
  • Magnifiers to increase the size of the text on a document
  • Tactile voting device to support those visually impaired to mark their vote on the ballot paper in the correct place
  • Polling booth at wheelchair level to ensure voters who use a wheelchair are able to access a lower writing surface and cast their vote in secret in a booth that is accessible
  • Badges, which clearly identify polling station staff who can assist
  • Pencil grips to help voters with dexterity impairments to more easily hold and use a pencil independently

In addition to the above, the Returning Officer also allows voters with disabilities to use any text-to-speech apps, torch or magnifier that they have on their phone, to assist them in reading their ballot paper.

In a limited number of places, due to the lack of suitable buildings, we have to use temporary mobiles as polling stations. Due to limitations, we encourage voters to ask staff for assistance if necessary, such as seating.

Postal and proxy voting

If you can't attend the polling station on election day for any reason, you can register in advance to vote by post or proxy instead. Visit our postal votes page and proxy votes page for more information.

Contact us

Phone: 01733 452 249 (open Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm)