Slow and steady appears to be the approach in polling station as votes are cast in local elections

PUBLISHED: 17:32 02 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:32 02 May 2019

Sam outside the City Gates Centre polling station. Picture: Victoria Pertusa

Sam outside the City Gates Centre polling station. Picture: Victoria Pertusa


Voters in Norfolk appear not to be rushing to the polling stations on local elections day as they are called upon to select their district representatives.

The polling station at Blofield on Yarmouth Road, May 2019. PICTURE: Jamie HoneywoodThe polling station at Blofield on Yarmouth Road, May 2019. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Polling stations across the county have been open since 7am, with every second tier council seat up for grabs as well as countless parish council seats.

However, while people do still have until 10pm tonight to cast their votes, slow and steady appears to be the consensus from polling stations across the county.

A teller at the Maids Head Hotel on Magdalen Street in Norwich said the station had been relatively quiet thus far.

He said: “It's been steady so far, but fairly quiet overall.”

The same story was told at another of the city's polling stations, Chantry House.

A teller there said: “It is still early days but we haven't been overly busy. A few people have commented that they will be unlikely to come back for European elections in a few weeks time.”

Meanwhile, in west Norfolk one of the borough's 104 polling stations welcomed fewer than 60 people by noon - an official said.

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“It's much quieter than recent years and we've only had a queue once or twice,” the officer said. “You normally get older people out first thing, then the families later on.”

At King's Lynn's Masonic Centre, voters had seven candidates to choose from – three each from the Tories and labour, plus an independent.

One 53-year-old female voter leaving the polls said: “People think it's all about Brexit but it isn't.” Asked why she had voted, she said: “To get the Tories out.”

Plans for hundreds of new homes at Knights Hill were turned down despite being recommended for approval, following an outcry from residents in the Woottons.

At South Wootton's polling station, one pensioner said the main issue for the villages on the outskirts of Lynn would be development .

“There's a general lack of service in King's Lynn,” he said. “If anyone comes in and wants a dentist they can't get one. If anyone wants a doctor's appointment they've got to wait two weeks.

“If they can't cope with all the people we've got already, how are they going to cope with another 1,000 people?”

Sources in south Norfolk meanwhile have indicated that stations have been slightly busier than expected - estimating it to have reached around the 20pc mark by 2pm.
The source said: “Anecdotally, I have heard around 60pc of the postal votes have been returned and I have been driving from polling station to polling station today and they are busier than I expected.”

The polling stations will remain open until 10pm this evening, with all councils except North Norfolk District Council waiting until the morning to begin counting and declaring results.

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