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People in Caithness have one week left to register to vote in upcoming council elections

By Niall Harkiss

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With only one week to go, time is running out to make for voters to make sure they can take part in the local elections.
With only one week to go, time is running out to make for voters to make sure they can take part in the local elections.

People in Caithness and across the Highlands are being urged to register to vote ahead of the April 18 deadline.

With only one week to go until next month’s local council elections, anyone wanting to vote must make sure they are registered in time.

Anyone living in Scotland who will be 16 or over on May 5, can register to vote in the upcoming elections. For those not already registered, the deadline to register to vote is midnight on Monday April 18. Residents can apply online at gov.uk/register-to-vote.

The registration process takes just five minutes.

On Thursday May 5, voters will go to the polls to have their say on who represents them on their council. This year residents in Highland and Western Isles will be voting to elect councillors, who will represent their local area, and make decisions in areas such as education, social care and housing.

Bill Gillies, electoral registration officer for Highland and Western Isles said: "With only one week to go, time is running out to make sure you can take part in the local elections.

"These elections are an important opportunity to make your voice heard and have a say on who represents you on issues that directly affect day-to-day life here in Highland and Western Isles. In order to be able to vote, residents must be on the electoral register. So if you’re not registered by midnight on April 18, you won’t be able to take part."

Andy O’Neill, head of the Electoral Commission in Scotland, said: "You can only take part in the May elections if you are registered to vote, and time is running out. It’s quick and easy – it takes just five minutes online at www.gov.uk/registertovote.

"If you have recently turned 16 or moved home, it is particularly important that you make sure you are correctly registered to vote.

"If you were registered to vote in the last election and your details have not changed, you don’t need to take any action. If in doubt, you can check with your electoral registration office by calling 0800 393 783."

Voters have a range of options – they can vote in person, by post or by appointing someone they trust to vote in their place, known as a proxy vote.

The deadline to apply for a postal vote is 5pm on April 19, and for a proxy vote the deadline is 5pm on April 26.

For information on elections in your area, how to register to vote, or how to apply to vote by post or by proxy, visit www.electoralcommission.org.uk/voter. This page will continue to be updated ahead of the polls.

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