Friday 2:24pm Update – Winston Roddick WINS vote. He polled 35668 votes compared to second place Tal Michael with 27,128 votes. That means Mr Roddick had 44% of the votes cast, but 6.8% of the total electorate of North Wales. Wrexham had the lowest turnout in North Wales of 12.24%. There were 2150 spoiled ballot papers.
The vote went to second preferences, with the first round results being: Hibbs 11453 McCabe 11485 Michael 23066 Nicholson 6034 Roddick 25715.
Last nights reports are below…
Tonight a silent majority of Wrexhamites overwhelmingly rejected the concept of elected Police Commissioners.
Wrexham.com predicts that the on the day turnouts will struggle to reach double figures, and although postal votes will add to the total votes cast – spoiled and erroneous papers will affect the total figure of votes cast.
We expect that around 85% of registered voters did not take part in the vote. This of course does not included those who reside in Wrexham who are ineligible or not registered to vote for whatever reason.
Further to this out of the small percentage of votes cast, they are then split between the candidates themselves so it is possible that the winner tomorrow will have mandate of a low single digit of the overall votes possible.
Wrexham.com was uniquely setup ready to conduct our very own ‘exit poll’ today – however there were not enough voters for us to question. We do note that what we deemed a statistically significant sample size might itself be bigger than actual turnout in some place.
Due to anecdotal evidence today – rather than harder data an exit poll would provide – we fully expect Tal Michael to be returned as the ‘winner’ tomorrow in Flintshire via first preference vote, however also expect the low turnout in Wrexham to be mirrored across North Wales.
Tal’s answer to our question on turnouts and mandates did say “What matters to the people of North Wales is surely electing someone who has the confidence to do the right thing but also the humility to consult others before making important decisions, not the size of the electoral mandate as a justification for doing the wrong thing in the face of opposition.”
We have been provided with some data taken from the streets of Wrexham which says out of 208 people asked over two 8 hour days of their opinion on the police and crime commissioners the following answers were given:
– 53 Did not know anything about it.
– 124 Felt that their opinion did not count.
– 31 Did not care
It is clear from speaking to people on the streets of Wrexham today, and the turnout data so far, that the PCC elections have not been received well nor engaged the people of the area.
Our live updates from today’s vote are below…
Voters in Wrexham are in theory heading to polling stations to elect the first police and crime commissioners for North Wales. Polls opened at 7am and are open until 10pm tonight.
If you want to find your polling station check this PDF file on Wrexham Council’s website.
Wrexham.com is the only local media to attempt a Q&A with candidates – viewable here.
Plus we attended the hustings / debate in Wrexham and have the only full in depth report of the evening blow by blow viewable by clicking here.
- Our next update will be at 10pm as polls close. We will be ‘calling’ the election at that point.
- 8:49pm We have taken a look at national trends and it seems Wrexham’s low turnout in single figures as reported / predicted by us is nothing special. We have seen 7% reported in Oxford, 6% in Leeds and one in London as low as 3.2% – but the lowest was at 5pm in Southampton with a 1% turnout at that point.As per our figures these are ‘on the day’ turnouts, and postal votes are still to be added on. Usually those who request postal votes use them so actual votes are going to be higher.
The Electoral Reform Society predicted a turnout of around 18.5% nationally – which looks optimistic at this stage. Its worth noting that figure itself would be the lowest ever recorded in a peacetime national election, let alone anything lower.
To add to our predictions we think tomorrow’s local press will have crime related headlines, and the day after, voter apathy via low turnouts will feature. Earlier today and lower down in this article we reviewed the election ‘coverage’ in the local press today.
- 8:20pmSpare a thought for the staff at polling stations who have had to be in post by 6:30am this morning. They have had to ensure they don’t wear anything that could sway the vote, and have such fun jobs as checking clocks and the like are synced up correctly.
Perhaps more amusingly given events they were given training by the Home Office if there was a surge of votes: “If you notice any queues forming, take steps
as instructed by the local Returning Officer for dealing with them.”As for voter apathy one Wrexham.com reader told us “I have not voted today as I do not know who or what I am voting for. I think its worse to make an ill informed vote than not voting.”
- 8:05pm Contender for best excuse not to vote has been spotted:
Decided against voting so voted on a kebab instead :) #goodintentions
— JJ (@IAmJordanJ) November 15, 2012
- 8pm Voting is NOT speeding up. Holt have been in touch and are bang on 7-8% turnout which we think is above average across Wrexham this evening. Going by our predicted turnouts there could be polling stations in Wrexham which have only had 6 or 7 voters today in total.
- 5pm-7.10pm Mega Update: Wrexham.com took a trip around several polling stations in and around the Wrexham area and can report that turnouts will be very very low.
Such low turnouts were expected however Wrexham.com is going as far as predicting turnout’s will be in single figures.Several hours today saw ZERO voters at polling stations, and we believe there will be some reporting as low as 5% turnout when the polls close at 10pm.With under two hours to go 3% was the lowest recorded turnout we calculated.With a first and second choice vote, plus voter apathy, we expect a percentage of the votes cast will be classed as ‘spoiled’ – deliberately or not. Postal votes will boost the figure – if people used them.
Speaking to people outside the polling stations many referred to the ‘dire’ day. It is worth noting although colder this evening, there has been no rain to affect the turnout.Others we spoke to complained about the lack of coverage at a national and local level. One of the four voters we did see said they had heard of us – as Wrexham.com is where they did the research to cast their vote – so hello !
- 4pm Another quick trip around polling venues in town sees the picture very much the same – voters in a trickle would be exaggeration Polls do remain open until 10pm with a ‘rush’ expected from 5.30pm onwards as people finish work.
- 2pm – Further to looking at local media below – we now look online to see what the candidates have been up to on Twitter so far on election day!
@ColmMcCabe4PCChas tweeted once today with a picture showing him voting in Wrexham.
@winston4pcc has tweeted fifteen times today so far – mainly in a debate with @wxmmoz !
@Richard4PCC has also tweeted several times, and the local slant being debate about Wrexham’s police station. He is making claims that other candidates have not been clear with the electorate – regarding political parties and membership of the masons.
@NicholsonPCC has not tweeted since the 13th of November
@TalMichaelhas also posted a picture of himself about to vote, and also heads off criticism of the election by linking to his blog where he gives his own views on how things could have been improved!
- 1:30pm We have this picture from a polling station in Wrexham – where it is ‘very quiet’ an no mention of the PCC – however that is usual for UK based elections. For those wondering, the count is taking place tomorrow in Flintshire – not Wrexham – as its for the whole of North Wales.
- 12:10 – Media Review! According to our local dead-tree press there isnt an election taking place! Today’s printed Daily Post has no mention of the historic vote. Today’s Leader likewise has no content on the PCC elections aside from a printed letter – ironically complaining over lack of information on it. Sadly . Online though the situation is reversed with the frontpages of the Leader’s site having no reference to the biggest change in policing for a very long time, however the Daily Post has a link to a short guide to North Wales candidates and mentions via their ‘live’ section.
- 11:30am – Our first circuit of the local polling stations has not yet found one voter!
If you have any observations, problems or questions please get in touch with Wrexham.com using this webform.
(Pictured: a ballot paper issued in Wrexham)