Tomorrow (Thursday 22 May) sees the European Parliament elections and it’s up to you to make your vote count.
Polls open at 7am on Thursday and voters can vote for who they want to represent them at the European Parliament until polls close at 10pm on the same day.
The European Parliament represents people living in the 28 member countries of the European Union (EU) and has powers across a range of areas such as animal rights, consumer rights, the environment, international trade, regional economic development, and workers’ rights.
For the European Parliament election, the UK is split into 12 European electoral regions, with each region represented by between three and ten MEPs.
The whole of Scotland is classed as one electoral region and represented by six MEPs.
A total of 90,398 South Ayrshire voters are eligible to take part in the European Parliament election.
They each have one vote that will be counted alongside others cast across the country to elect the six MEPs for the Scotland electoral region.
Votes are cast for either a political party or an individual candidate standing as an independent – although there are no independent candidates standing for election within Scotland this time. To vote, voters will mark one cross (X) against the party they wish to vote for. Details of where to vote are included in the poll cards that have been sent to voters across South Ayrshire. Following a recent review, polling places may be different from those used for previous elections, so it’s vital voters check the details on their poll card.
Eileen Howat, Local Returning Officer, said: “There’s only days until polls open, so it’s important you know when to vote, where to vote and who to contact if you need more information.
“For many voters, the where to vote will be different this year as we’ve changed a number of polling places – mostly where we made use of primary schools – so please make sure you know where you should go to vote and don’t just head for where you’ve gone previously.
“Voting in the European Parliament election is your chance to have your say on who represents you at an international level, so please take the time to have your say and make your vote count.”
Mrs Howat also reminded the 16,922 postal voters to return their votes as soon as possible. She added: “As well as casting their vote, postal voters also need to complete the postal voting statement – which includes their date of birth and signature – and return it alongside the ballot paper. So, if you have a postal vote, please ensure you follow all the instructions provided in your voting pack or your vote may not count.”
For further information on the European Parliament election – including details of all polling places – visit www.south-ayrshire.gov.uk/elections/european. You can also find out more at www.aboutmyvote.co.uk.
In the European elections, you can vote for one of the political parties listed below. Six Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) will be elected for the electoral region of Scotland.
The parties below are listed in alphabetical order and in the order they will appear on the ballot paper.
The names of the candidates for each party are numbered to show the order they will be elected from that party, depending on the percentage of the vote that each party receives.
Britain First; 1 James Dowson 2 John Arthur Randall 3 Jayda Kaleigh Fransen 4 Geoffrey Clynch 5 Margaret Dorothy Clynch 6 Jane Susan Shepherd
British National Party; 1 Kenneth McDonald 2 David James Orr 3 Victoria McKenzie 4 Angus Jim Matthys 5 Paul Brandy Stafford 6 Stacey Jayne Fleming
Conservative Party; 1 Ian Duncan 2 Belinda Don 3 Nosheena Mobarik 4 Jamie Gardiner 5 Iain McGill 6 Stuart McIntyre
Labour Party; 1 David Martin 2 Catherine Stihler 3 Derek Munn 4 Katrina Murray 5 Asim Khan 6 Kirsty O’Brien
Liberal Democrats; 1 George Lyon 2 Christine Jardine 3 Richard John Brodie 4 Jade Elizabeth Holden 5 Siobhan Helenor Mathers 6 Euan Robert Davidson
NO2EU; 1 John Odell Foster 2 Andrew Elliott
Scottish Green Party; 1 Maggie Chapman 2 Chas Booth 3 Grace Alice Murray 4 Alastair Whitelaw 5 Anne Katherine Thomas 6 Steen William Parish
Scottish National Party (SNP) 1 Ian Hudghton 2 Alyn Smith 3 Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh 4 Stephen Gethins 5 Toni Giugliano
6 Chris Stephens
UK Independence Party (UKIP) 1 David Adam Coburn 2 Kevin Andrew Newton 3 Otto Inglis 4 Denise Mary Baykal 5 Hugh Hatrick 6 Malcolm George-Eric MacKay