Q&A: All you need to know about the “super Thursday” elections

Generic ballot paper being put into a ballot box <PIC POSED>Ballot Boxes at City Hall being prepared

Generic ballot paper being put into a ballot box <PIC POSED> Ballot Boxes at City Hall being prepared for delivery to all the polling stations around the Norwich South area. Norwich South Election. Picture: James Bass For: EDP News Eastern Daily Press © 2010 (01603) 772434 - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2010

Voters go to the polls on Thursday to vote in council elections in Norwich and Great Yarmouth and police and crime commissioner elections in the rest of the region. Here are some key facts.

Which elections are taking place?

In Norwich and Great Yarmouth there are local council elections. One third of the wards on each of the councils is up for grabs. There is one councillor being elected in each of the following wards in Norwich: Catton Grove, Crome, Mile Cross, Bowthorpe, Eaton, Lakenham, Mancroft, Nelson, Thorpe Hamlet, Town Close, University, Wensum, Sewell.

One councillor will also be elected to Great Yarmouth Borough Council in these wards: Bradwell North, Bradwell South and Hopton, Central and

Northgate, Claydon, East Flegg, Gorleston, Magdalen, Nelson, Ormesby, St Andrews, Southtown and Cobholm, West Flegg, Yarmouth North.

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In each of the counties in the region there is also the election for a police and crime commissioner.

Elsewhere there are elections for the Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish devolved parliaments, Mayors in London, Bristol and Salford are also being elected.

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There are parliamentary by-elections in Sheffield and Ogmore in Wales.

How could the political landscape change?

Norwich City Council is currently controlled by Labour. Labour has 22 seats, the Greens have 14 and the Liberal Democrats have three. Seven of the seats up for election are held by Labour, five by the Greens and one by the Liberal Democrats.

In Great Yarmouth Borough Council the 13 ward seats going to the polls are at present held by eight Labour, four Conservative and one independent.

Currently the Tories and Labour are neck and neck with 14 seats each, UKIP have eight and there are three independents.

The Tories hold the leadership of the council, through Graham Plant, with support from UKIP.

In Norfolk the police and crime commissioner post has been held by independent Stephen Bett for the last four years. He is standing again and is being contested by five candidates Lorne Green (Con), Jacky Howe (Lib Dem), Chris Jones (Lab), David Moreland (UKIP), Martin Schmierer (Gre).

In Suffolk the post has been held by Conservative Tim Passmore. He is being contested by Terence Carter (Gre), Helen Korfanty (Lib Dem), Cath Pickles (Lab) and Simon Tobin (UKIP).

In Cambridgshire incumbent Conservative Sir Graham Bright is standing down and the following candidates are contesting the seat Dave Baigent (Lab), Rupert Moss-Eccardt (Lib Dem), Jason Ablewhite (Con), Nick Clarke (UKIP).

How do the votes work?

The polls will be open from 7am until 10pm tomorrow.

In the local council elections it is a first past the post system. Between one and three councillors will represent the local ward.

The ballot paper lists the name of each candidate along with their party name, party logo and their address.

Depending on where you live you will be able to vote for between one and three candidates. The instructions at the top of your ballot paper will tell you how many candidates you can vote for.

Simply put a cross (X) next to each candidate that you wish to vote for. You do not have to use all of your votes; the suggested number is a maximum.

The police and crime commissioner will be decided through a supplementary vote system. You can vote for a first and second choice. The ballot paper will list all the candidates standing in your area. Next to the list of candidates there will be two columns. You will be asked to: vote for your first-choice candidate by marking a cross (X) in the first-choice column, and vote for your second-choice candidate by marking a cross (X) in the second-choice column. As long as you mark one cross in the first-choice column, your vote can be counted. If you have marked a first-choice, you can choose whether or not to mark a second-choice. But if you only mark a cross in the second-choice column, your vote won't be counted.

When are the results expected?

The local election counts will take place overnight and the results are expected in the early hours of Friday morning.

The police and crime commissioner ballot papers will be counted during the day on Friday and the result is expected to be announced on Friday evening.

Make sure you visit our websites and our Twitter accounts @edp24 and @eveningnews to find out the results as they come in.

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