SZ1293 : Littledown: ready to count the votes

taken 2 years ago, near to Throop, Bournemouth, Great Britain

Littledown: ready to count the votes
Littledown: ready to count the votes
It is 10:10pm on the day of the general election, and the first ballot boxes to arrive from polling stations will soon be here at SZ1293 : Littledown: the leisure centre ready for the count. In front of us are the tools we will need. An overview of the hall is here: SZ1293 : Littledown: ready for the 2017 election count

It is a two-stage process - firstly the Verification, then the Count.

As each ballot box arrives at the venue, it is checked in along with the various unused stationery, voter lists etc. The ballot accounts give the total number of votes contained within each box. Once everything is satisfactorily checked off, the process can begin.

The VERIFICATION involves the ballot box being emptied onto a count staff team's table (the count staff work in teams of 6), and each ballot is turned up the right way and put into piles to be counted. At this stage, they are NOT sorted by candidate; the purpose is to establish that the number of ballots present matches the number supposed to be in the box.

Each count staff will count the papers into 20, denoted by a paperclip; these are then swapped with the neighbouring person and double-checked. Each time five batches of 20 are reached, they are put into a rubber band to denote 100. Finally, a bulldog clip is attached to any residual batch of 1-19 and a Post-It note attached to signify the number. The six staff attending to each box will then pool their residual ballots to make up further 20s and be left with no more than one odd batch containing fewer.

If the numbers do not tally, the entire boxful is re-counted from scratch.

Once verified, these are taken to a central table. The ballots from each ballot box are combined here, and then collated into batches of 1000 votes ready for the second stage.

The second stage, the COUNT, is where the votes are separated for each candidate. This election has five candidates, so we are aiming to have five piles of votes which total 1000. Any ballots with queries are set aside for adjudication and these are either put back into the pile if accepted as a valid vote, or sent for adjudication. The process is similar to the Verification in that paperclips denote 20 and rubber bands denote 100, but a piece of paper of the candidate's colour is wrapped around each set of 100 for that person.

When the number of votes for each party are confirmed to total 1000 (less any sent for adjudication), the batch is signed off and taken to the collation point where they are displayed for candidates and their agents to view - eventually wrapped up further into 500s and 1000s.

When every batch of 1000 votes has been counted (plus the inevitable final smaller batch), the results can be assimilated and the declaration made.

See SZ1293 : Littledown: the 2017 election result is declared for the first declaration, made at 3:25am.
General Election 2017
Signs and Posters for the general election held in June 2017
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SZ1293, 52 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Thursday, 8 June, 2017   (more nearby)
Saturday, 10 June, 2017
Geographical Context
Suburb, Urban fringe  People, Events 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SZ 1240 9391 [10m precision]
WGS84: 50:44.6799N 1:49.5371W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SZ 1240 9391
View Direction
North-northwest (about 337 degrees)
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Sports Hall  General Election  Election Count 

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