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Postal voting

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​What is postal voting and who can apply?

Postal voting gives you the option of voting by post rather than visiting a polling station to cast your vote.

  • If you're registered to vote, you can apply to vote by post. Find out how to register to vote.
  • You can apply for a postal vote anytime throughout the year or no later than 11 working days before polling day.
  • You must sign the form and include your date of birth. We use this information to combat fraud.
  • Please return your completed application by post to the address on the form, by email to  or hand it in at the Number One Riverside reception desk

Apply for a postal vote - download the application form (​133kb ​pdf​​​)​​​​​​​​

Find out how we use your personal information in our privacy notice.

We strongly advise you to complete and send us your application early. Don't wait until the election date is known. If you move house you must tell us immediately, or you may lose your postal vote.

Popular questions answered about postal voting

Can anyone have a postal vote? Yes. You can apply for a postal vote anytime throughout the year or no later than 11 working days before polling day

Where can my postal vote be sent? To your home address or abroad.  

Can I hand in my postal vote? Yes, you can hand it in at the Number One Riverside reception desk.

When will my postal vote be sent out? Around 10 days before polling day. Remember though that if the address is outside the UK, it will take time to reach you and for you to return it for your vote to be counted.

Can I still choose to vote at my polling station if I have a postal vote? No.

I've received a previous occupiers postal vote, what should I do? Do not use it, send it back to us marked, "occupant no longer lives here" or bring it to Number One Riverside reception desk.

How do I complete my postal ballot pack? Details will be issued with your ballot pack.

What if I don't receive my ballot pack? You can get a replacement pack by calling in person to the Electoral Services Section, Number One Riverside, Rochdale before 5pm on election day. You will need to bring photographic proof of your identity, for example passport, photo driving licence, bus permit, student card.

What if I've spoilt my ballot pack? You'll need to bring your spoilt ballot pack in person to Number One  Riverside, Rochdale together with photographic proof of your identity, for example passport, photo driving licence, bus permit, student card, by 5pm on election day for a replacement. Contact us if you're disabled and unable to do this.

I've lost my ballot paper, can I have a new one? Yes. You'll need to come to the council's main building at Number One Riverside with photo and address ID, for example passport, photo driving licence, bus permit, student card. The earliest you can get a replacement is 4 days before the date of the election and the latest is by 5pm on election day.

I've forgotten to put my ballot paper or postal vote in the envelope and sealed it, what should I do? You can still use the envelope, put your initials where it was opened and reseal it.

Can I use a different envelope? Yes.

I've posted the envelope without the ballot paper, what should I do? Post the paper in, or hand it into Number One Riverside and we'll try to match it up.

I've voted for the wrong person, can I correct it? Yes, cross out the incorrect vote and mark the paper with the correct vote, do not use Tippex or any other correction fluid. Or you can apply for a replacement ballot pack.

I've put my postal vote in my husband's envelope, will it still count? Yes, we'll match up the envelopes when we receive them.

I'm disabled and cannot post my vote, what should I do? Contact us and we'll arrange for someone to collect your vote.

How is my postal vote counted? Your ballot paper will be mixed with all others before counting begins which ensures your vote remains secret.

How do I cancel my postal vote? You simply need to contact us prior to the last date for postal vote cancellations otherwise you'll need to keep your postal vote for the forthcoming election and cancel it after.

Protect your vote

It's illegal for anyone to influence you to vote against your will. Watch the video below to see the many different forms voter fraud can take.


Watch the video on YouTube (1 min)


0300 303 0345

Phone: Monday-Friday 8.30am-5.30pm.
Closed for training Monday 11am-11.30am.

Elections Team
Governance and Committee Services
Floor 2
Number One Riverside
Smith Street
Rochdale OL16 1XU​​

Key general election dates

Deadline for list of candidates
Nominations close at 4pm, published at 5pm, 14 November 2019

Last date to register to vote
12 midnight, 26 November 2019

Receipt of postal vote applications
5pm, 26 November 2019

Receipt of proxy vote applications
5pm, 4 December 2019

Election day