Thanet goes to the local election polls

Time to go to the polls

Today (May 4) voters go to the polls to choose their candidates for district, town and parish councils.

Polling stations open at 7am and close at 10pm. This year, for the first time, voters will need to take photographic ID with them.

In April 2022, the Elections Act 2022 was passed by the UK Parliament. The Act requires voters in Great Britain to show photo ID before being issued a ballot paper in polling stations at UK Parliamentary elections, local council elections and referendums in England and police and crime commissioner elections in England and Wales. This also applies to a proxy voter, someone voting in person on someone’s behalf.

See full list of photo ID accepted at GOV.UK

The election count will take place tomorrow (May 5) with results predicted to be announced in the afternoon.

Thanet council has been minority led since 2017. The last party to have overall control was UKIP but following its 2015 victory the group suffered defections and resignations, including an en-masse withdrawal of 12 UKIP members who formed the Thanet Independent Councillors group in protest at the administration’s stance on the future of the Manston airport site.

At the end of February 2018 then council leader and Thanet UKIP Party boss Chris Wells resigned from his role  in the wake of the row. Conservatives took the helm of a minority led council with Kingsgate councillor Bob Bayford taking the leader’s position.

Local elections in May 2019 saw Labour made huge gains at the district election, going from five seats to 20, and Greens on the authority for the first time winning three seats. Independent Ruth Brackstone-Bailey gained a seat with her vote rising from 230 (2%) in the 2015 election to 776 (15%) in the 2019 poll..

Conservatives also increased by three seats to 25 while UKIP were wiped out of the authority. Thanet Independents Party won seven seats.

The turnout was 30.15%. The results meant Conservatives still led a minority administration with party leader Bob Bayford retaining his seat but Labour forming a large opposition.

A motion to remove him as council leader was last put forward in October 2019 with a vote of no confidence being passed. The motion was put by Thanet Independent Group leader Stuart Piper and resulted in councillors voting Labour’s Rick Everitt in as the new leader, meaning the end of the Conservative-led administration.

An attempt to oust the Labour Party from its minority administration then came in April 2021 prior to county council and by-elections but Cllr Everitt resigned from the role meaning a takeover was not possible. Cllr Helen Whitehead, deputy leader in the Labour Cabinet, temporarily stepped up into the leader’s role during the interim until a vote in June 2021.

Nominations were made for Conservative Ash Ashbee, Labour’s Rick Everitt and Green’s Mike Garner.

Cllr Ashbee won the vote, returning the council to a Conservative, minority-led position. She has remained in the role since then.

Nationally, Labour will be watching the Thanet vote in a hope of getting an indication of support for the General Election scheduled to be held no later than 28 January 2025 but currently mooted for an Autumn 2024 date. Currently, both of Thanet’s MPs are Conservative.

A total of 56 councillors need to be elected at district level to represent the wards across the isle.

Prior to the election Thanet District Council consisted of:

  • 25 Conservative
  • 15 Labour
  • 7 Thanet Independents
  • 5 Green and Independents
  • 2 Independents
  • 2 vacant seats

Find your polling station here 

Find district election candidates for each area here


    • Agreed Barry even though we are different ward and party everybody should go and vote as you say don’t complain if you don’t vote. There should be a law that everyone over the age of voting should vote,

      • No, because that won’t ensure people research who they are voting for first. Its the Australian way, don’t vote- get fined… which means people will put ANYONE!

        • You don’t have to actually vote for anyone. You could, for example, write “None of the above” on your ballot paper.

          • Hi Phyllis exactly what I did a few years ago by at least going you are saying you have at least thought about it,

        • Hi Rosie that is not necessarily the case I emailed the candidates early so I could make a decision on the same questions I asked each of the 3 sent 2 replied which was useful for me as I will always vote as from the age of 14 before I could vote I believe it is essential that we all should vote, what your saying is what the tories & Labour say as they don’t want to lose an election.

  1. Vote for independent candidates, if their platforms are palatable . Avoid the ConLabLibDem cancer. Local elections are about local issues, and my issue is the upcoming razing of woodland and wildlife habitat adjacent to Jackie Baker’s, to add to the glut of new builds in Thanet, in an area as wide as my left leg. I really don’t want to hear the traditional local parties bleating about environmental issues and shoving the green agenda down our collective throats then agree like lapdogs to the bulldozing of trees and scarce wildlife habitat to assuage a moronic National government housing quota policy . Politicians at all levels are taking the public for mugs, and they know it.

    • I’d be interested to learn which candidates have sensible centre-right principles (who I’d vote for) please.

    • Barry what an interesting election this will be. For instance I find it fascinating that Labour have a candidate called Jane Mary Hetherington standing in Thanet Villages and also a Jane Mary Hetherington standing for re-election as a town councillor in the Newington Ward for Ramsgate Town Councillor. I wonder if she is the same person? surely not as her home address is different on each election of notice of candidates nominated for the said wards. Anybody know?

  2. If you have lost your ID, or if what you have is not accepted. You can vote by applying for an emergency proxy until 5PM on polling day. Don’t let the Tories steal your right to vote.

  3. Now why would a seaside lover vote for a party that chooses to allow raw sewage to turn UK into an open sewer?

      • Thatcher flogged off UK water among most UK services. Tories voted to allow. Water cos to continue breaking the law by dumping sewage all over our island. Labour have a big job beating that. Then there’s the criminality in Tory party. Lost £65bn. Snorting in the HoC. It doesn’t stop.

  4. Why are the local tories obsessed with Manston?
    There’s absolutely nothing TDC nor RTC can do to change the outcome of the DCO application. It’s all down to the SoS.
    If you only vote for a tory candidate because “Manston” is mentioned on their election blurb, then you’re wasting your vote.

    • I’m not sure how to do that. It’s not actually standing as a candidate.
      It doesn’t matter who you vote for: it won’t make any difference to the outcome of the DCO application.
      What would have made a difference is if, when the place was open, people actually flew from it. But they didn’t, so ut closed.
      How often, Mr 558, did you fly from Manston?

  5. Both Tories and Labour ,say dont abstain or give your vote to another party,why because they lose votes, but that’s another thing, the problem, with both the main parties is ,when they ,lose ,an election ,both seem to think ,the answer is ,go to the extremes,for policies,letting in people like Boris and Jeremy,and then general public give up,and either abstain or give the vote to a minor party as protest, it the main two ,did a good job ,smaller parties would not get the votes

Comments are closed.