It’s polling day on Thursday May 6 and voters in Kirklees will be electing their local councillors and will also vote for the new Mayor of West Yorkshire – but don’t expect the results for at least 48 hours.
The Covid-19 pandemic means that this year’s elections are a bit different. There are a few things to remember so that everyone gets the chance to make their vote count.
If you’re planning to vote in person on Thursday (7am-10pm), there will be a few changes to a ‘normal election day. First, you need to check where your polling station is. It might have moved! This will be on your polling card or you can look it up at: https://wheredoivote.co.uk.
Kirklees Council also taking extra steps to keep everyone safe by providing hand sanitiser at every polling station and making sure everyone can socially distance as they register their vote. You might have to queue and you need to take your own pen or pencil.
Across Kirklees 118 candidates will fight for 25 seats with 23 wards being contested across the borough.
The current composition of the council looks like this:
- Labour – 32
- Conservative – 16
- Liberal Democrat – 10
- Green – 3
- Holme Valley North Independent Group – 3
- Independents – 3
- Vacant – 2
Labour currently runs the council and below is the breakdown of seats up for election this time:
- Labour – 11
- Conservative – 6
- Liberal Democrat – 3
- Green – 1
- Independent Group – 1
- Independents -1
- Vacant – 2
- Total: 25
There are vacancies in Golcar and Birstall & Birkenshaw.
The council will be operating 194 polling stations across the district with 26 locations changed. Covid-secure methods means limiting the number of voters in some polling stations, operating one-way systems, offering sanitiser, undertaking regular cleaning and installing desk-top perspex screens.
The other major change this year is that due to social distancing and limits on the number of people at the counts the Kirklees votes won’t be counted until Saturday May 8 so it could be early evening before a final outcome is known.
The announcement on who will be the first Mayor of West Yorkshire won’t be made until later on Sunday.