Get ready for the European Parliament elections

On Thursday 23 May you will be voting to for the MEPs to represent the South East in European Parliament.

Before then, make sure you know where your polling station is, what to do, and which parties and candidates are standing for election.

European Parliamentary elections

These elections are held every five years in all the European Union states. Under a system of proportional representation, the UK is represented by 73 MEPs divided into 12 regions. There are 10 MEPs representing the South East region which covers: Isle of Wight, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire, Kent, Surrey, Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire.

To vote in these elections you must be:

  • registered by Tuesday 7 May
  • aged 18 or over 
  • a British, qualifying Commonwealth, or European Union citizen (EU citizens had to complete an extra form stating they are choosing to vote in the UK) 
  • either resident in Brighton & Hove or a UK citizen formerly registered in Brighton & Hove but living abroad.

Polls are open from 7am until 10pm

You must go to your allocated polling station between 7am and 10pm on Thursday. You can find this on your poll card.

When you arrive, staff will take your name and address and cross you off on their checklist. You will then be given a ballot paper to vote.

How to cast your vote

Everyone in the South East region (which includes Brighton & Hove) will have a choice to vote for one of 12 options. These include nine parties and three independent candidates.

You need to clearly mark your choice with a cross in the box next to your selected party or candidate. When you have made your selection, fold your ballot paper in half and put it into the ballot box.

How are MEPs elected?

MEPs are elected using proportional representation. This means seats will be awarded to the party (or independent candidate) in proportion to the number of votes they win.

On your ballot paper you will see a list of ordered candidates next to each party. When a seat is won by a party, the top choice candidate for that party will be elected. 

Return your postal vote in time

If you have received a postal voting pack you must make sure you return your postal vote so that it gets back to us by 23 May. You can return it in the post, drop it in to Hove Town Hall, or hand the completed envelope in at a polling station on Thursday 23 May.

Results for the South East

The poll and declaration of results for the South East of England is administered by the Regional Returning Officer at Southampton City Council. The results for the South East will be declared by Southampton City Council after all the polls for member states in the EU have closed on Sunday 26 May 2019.

Key dates and more information

  • Thursday 25 April: Candidates listed
  • Tuesday 7 May: Last day to register to vote and for us to receive forms from EU citizens
  • Wednesday 8 May: Last day for us to receive your postal vote application
  • Wednesday 15 May: Last day for us to receive your proxy vote application
  • Thursday 23 May: UK polls are open from 7am until 10pm
  • Sunday 26 May: South East region count

For more detailed information about European Parliamentary elections, please go to the elections pages on our website.

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