Reviews of polling districts, polling places and polling stations

The legislative requirements of a polling place review

Local authorities must comply with the following legislative requirements regarding the designation of polling districts and polling places1 :

  • each parish in England and community in Wales is to be a separate polling district, unless special circumstances apply 
  • in Scotland, each electoral ward must be divided into two or more separate polling districts, unless special circumstances apply
  • the council must designate a polling place for each polling district, unless the size or other circumstances of a polling district are such that the situation of the polling stations does not materially affect the convenience of the electors
  • the polling place must be an area in the district, unless special circumstances make it desirable to designate an area wholly or partly outside the district (for example, if no accessible polling place can be identified in the district)
  • the polling place must be small enough to indicate to electors in different parts of the district how they will be able to reach the polling station

Local authorities must also comply with accessibility requirements, which you can find in our guidance on the accessibility requirements of a polling place review.

Last updated: 12 July 2023