Postal error leaves village without polling cards

A post office failure is being blamed for an entire village not receiving its polling cards for next week’s election.

The resident’s of Branscombe have been missed out by deliveries of their voting cards, and East Devon district Council is now scrambling to send replacements in time for the district elections and the national AV referendum.

An EDDC spokesman said: “On 28 March Royal Mail collected poll cards for all those on the register and eligible to vote. It now appears that many of these were not delivered. The Returning Officer has now arranged for replacement poll cards to be sent to all voters in Branscombe whose names are recorded on the electoral register.”

The council wanted to stress however residents do not need a poll card to be able to vote at a Polling Station, as long as your name is on the Electoral Register then you are able to have your say on May 5. But Ross Wilmington, who has been delivering leaflets for the local elections in the past week, thinks most people are unaware of this fact and turnout in Branscombe will be extremely low.

In an email to Mark Williams, the Returning Officer for EDDC, he said: “I fear that a huge percentage of Branscombe are unaware of the AV referendum or the local elections, because they have not received a polling card. This is a very serious vote on AV and everyone needs the chance to vote.”

The council was confident the new voting cards would arrive in good time for the election, having been posted before the Easter weekend

The replacement cards will carry the statement: “We are writing to you informing you of the elections which you are entitled to vote at and are listed below. This has been made necessary due to the failure of Royal Mail to deliver the original Poll Card.”