As the local elections approach on Thursday 6 May 2021, West Oxfordshire District Council is preparing to make sure all polling stations available for those who wish to vote in person are safe and Covid secure.

Voting in person will be different this year with polling stations following the Covid secure rules seen across shops and other indoor locations during the pandemic. This will include voters wearing masks, using hand sanitiser, social distancing and making sure items touched in the polling booths are cleaned.  Staff will also be taking the necessary precautions to keep safe and have received additional training to help advise and support voters.

Voters are encouraged to bring their own masks and pen or pencil on the day to reduce wastage on the day, however, for those that need them they will be available.

Some polling stations have had to change due to some usual polling locations being unsuitable during the pandemic and so voters are being urged to check their poll cards to make sure they know where their polling station is.

Residents are also being encouraged to make sure they are registered to vote, and if they want to, have applied for postal or proxy voting ahead of the rapidly approaching deadlines.

Residents can register to vote through the Government website which takes only five minutes to complete.

Residents can apply for postal voting now and have to get their application in before the deadline of 5 pm on 20 April and to be able to vote by proxy, applications must be in by 5 pm on Tuesday 27 April.

Application forms for postal and proxy voting can be downloaded from the Electoral Commission or voters can visit WODC’s website at westoxon.gov.uk/registertovote or contact 01993 861410.

For anyone interested in voting by post this year they need to make sure we have received their application for their postal vote before 5 pm on the 20 April. We are quickly approaching the deadline and I would encourage people to sign up sooner rather than later.