With minutes left to polls close I thought I would share a few thoughts.
First, compare and contrast the two reminder cards (and as far as I could tell it was only Labour and the Conservatives who has these).
Labour reminds the voter about the times the polling stations open and close, and includes a few pledges. The Conservative affair mentions a referendum which neither a councillor nor an MEP can deliver – in other words it is misleading.
I spent three hours, from 7am, at a polling station. It seemed to me that voting was slow. I have little idea what happened later, but I will be interested in the turnout figure.
I saw no Conservative activists at all today. I heard that some were about, but compared to previous years they were very few and far between. It looks like the Tories are in for a bad night – time will tell.
One polling station in Milton, the one at Avenue Baptist Church in Milton Road, was in a slightly different place this year, and the entrance was a short distance from where it had been in recent years. I heard that some voters could not find it, and I am extremely concerned about this. Why wasn’t I warned about this? (I sit on the committee that deals with polling stations and nothing was mentioned via that medium either). If I had been told it could have included this on our literature. Although I do not suggest huge numbers were disenfranchised by this, if the victory margin is small there will be justifiable cause for grievance by the second placed candidate.
I also heard there were issues with a polling station for Westborough ward.
My impressions in Milton are that we worked the hardest, and for the longest. The Tory campaign began after the New Year and was reasonably active, although some way behind ours. The Independent did some work too, although produced only the one leaflet which contained very little in the way of a program for the ward, The Liberal Democrats and UKIP have done nothing in Milton.
As for the European elections, I am loathe to criticise my own party, but where the Hell is my freepost Labour Euro leaflet? If a rabble like the English Democrats can organise one then we should.