A police officer visits the polling station within a former fire station on June 8, 2017 in London, United Kingdom. Leon Neal/Getty Images
This liveblog has concluded ahead of the polls closing. Follow our new live coverage here »
- Britain will vote for a new government from 7 a.m. BST (2 a.m. ET) until 10 p.m BST today.
- The number of people registered to vote is higher than the 2015 general election.
- The press is restricted on what it can write until voting ends.
- Exit polls will immediately be published at 10 p.m. BST.
- Results are expected to be clear around 4 a.m. BST.
LONDON — Britain goes to the polls from 7 a.m. BST (2 a.m. ET) to vote for its next government, only two years after the last general election.
There are 46.9 million people registered to vote — a rise from the 2015 general election number of 46.4 million.
The press is restricted by law on what it can publish during the voting period, including indications on how people are voting, but exit polls will become immediately available at 10 p.m. BST when polling stations shut.
Between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. local time on June 9, we should get a clear indication of who has won the general election.
A total of 650 Westminster MPs will be elected. In order for a party to get a clear majority in government, it would have to claim 326 seats.
2135 — AND NOW THE FUN BEGINS: FOLLOW OUR COVERAGE THROUGHOUT THE REST OF THE NIGHT
With less than half an hour until polls close, the time has come to bring this liveblog to an end. Business Insider will be following events through the news and blogging like mad right here, so if you’re brave or foolish enough to stay up all night, please, follow along!
2127 — REPORT: THE NEWCASTLE-UNDER-LYME ELECTORAL ROLL HAS BEEN UPDATED
Guardian reporter Hannah Jane-Parkinson reports on Twitter that the Newcastle-Under-Lyme electoral roll has been updated, and that the issues earlier in the day that led to people being turned away from polling stations have been resolved.
ATTENTION: people turned away in Newcastle Under Lyme, electoral roll has been UPDATED. Head back! Just be in line b4 10pm. #ElectionDay2017
2100 — THE FINAL STRETCH
This is really it: There’s just one hour to go. Exit polls will drop at 10 p.m., and if you haven’t already voted — what are you waiting for?
2045 — ISSUES VOTING IN PLYMOUTH
The Plymouth Herald is reporting that “numerous” voters have been turned away from polling stations despite having polling cards after being told their names are not on the electoral register. One voter affected has reportedly lived in the same house for more than three decades.
Some people are also having are also having issues voting at Keele University in Newcastle-under-Lyme, a Labour-Tory marginal currently held by Labour.
2038 — FAKE JOURNALISTS ARE SPREADING MISINFORMATION ON TWITTER
Here’s something to be aware of, via PA journo Alastair Reid: Fake Twitter accounts pretending to be journalists have been spreading misinformation on Twitter today, alleging altercations and issues at polling stations.
This is basically fake account 101:- Reverse image search profile pic- Search for the name- Check the join date- Check for other reports pic.twitter.com/5YooOJFvgA
1955 — “THERE IS CHAOS, WHICH IS DENYING PEOPLE VOTES ON A SCALE UNPRECEDENTED IN MY 30 YEARS”
The Guardian has spoken to Labour candidate Paul Farrelly in Newcastle-under-Lyme, where there have been issues stopping some students voting today. He has been highly critical, saying:
“The electoral services department here in Newcastle is a shambles and there is chaos, which is denying people votes on a scale unprecedented in my 30 years fighting and organising elections.
“We have spent the past week firefighting over scores of postal votes, which have not arrived and we not only have lots of registration applications that have not been processed but people – including students – being turned away when they are indeed registered.”
1941 — COMEY FEVER GRIPS THE STATES
With candidates unable to campaign and broadcast media limited in what they can report, it’s all pretty quiet in Britain today. (Until the polls close, at least!) But not so across the pond.
James Comey, the ex-FBI director fired by President Trump earlier this year, has been testifying before the US Senate in a historic hearing about his relationship with the President, the investigation into Russian meddling in 2016’s election, and whether Trump tried to interfere with ongoing FBI investigations.
Comey accused the Trump administration of defaming him and spreading “lie, plain and simple,” and talked about his unease about his interactions with Trump. Business Insider’s US team has been covering the whole thing, and you can follow the full coverage here »
1912 — ISSUES FOR SOME STUDENTS VOTING AT KEELE UNIVERSITY
Looks like there may have been some issues at Keele University, in the constituency of Newcastle-on-Lyme. (Hat-tip to The Guardian.) Multiple people on Twitter have complained that dozens of people haven’t been able to vote.
For context, this is a pretty marginal seat — just 650 votes separate Labour and the Tories. And students are, generally, more likely to vote Labour.
Newcastle Borough Council have advised this could be a problem with late registrations not being included on the lists sent out (2/2)
70 young people turned away from keele polling station by 1pm today – why? #GeneralElection17
By 11am they’d turned away 20+ voters! Reckoned to be in the 100s now! This is not good!
1835 — DRAMA IN STOKE NEWINGTON
There has been a surreal, dramatic episode at a school-turned-polling station in Stoke Newington, London, according to Guido Fawkes reporter Ross Kempsell.
Kempsell reported on Twitter that the school had posters up in the windows apparently drawn by children, emblazoned with slogans like “We want change fund schools!” and “More books and libraries.” Another message, seemingly writen by school staff, urged voters to “Vote with your heart, not by what the papers tell you!”
Police were on-site, but the site manager apparently refused to take the posters down, threatening to close the entire polling station instead. They’ve ultimately been covered with official signs, the journo said.
You can read the full, strange story below:
1/ Absolute polling day scenes earlier at Tyssen Community Primary School polling station in Stoke Newington… pic.twitter.com/UjV7NzCLNe
2 / I witnessed posters in the polling station window featuring hammers and sickles, drawn by school kids, reading: “the kids aren’t happy”
3 / “They want CHANGE! Vote with your heart, not by what the papers tell you.” Police were on scene when I arrived, checking electoral law
4 / A man who identified himself as the school site manager refuse to take down the posters when asked by polling station volunteers
5 / the school site manager then threatened to close the polling station rather than remove the hammer and sickle posters
6 / the police brokered a compromise whereby another school staff member and site manager agreed to cover up the posters with brown paper
7 / but they then claimed they had no paper in the school to cover the posters. Polling station staff then covered them with official signs
8 / the police and polling staff throughout attempted to reach a compromise. The school staff were intent on displaying the posters.
I understand that candidates are aware of this incident and it has tonight been reported to the Electoral Commission.
PS I should also report that I heard school staff suggesting that the vote should take place on the street rather than take the posters down
1800 — THE BEGINNING OF THE END
It’s 6 o’clock, most Brits are leaving work, and there are four hours left to vote in today’s general election. (So if you haven’t yet, hurry up!)
One possible thing to watch for this evening will be queues. In 2010, there was significant queues and chaos at some stations as people lined up to vote in the late evenings, with hundreds of people left unable to cast their votes. Hopefully there won’t be a repeat this time around.
Whatever happens, though, things won’t get really exciting until after 10 p.m — that’s when the polls close, and the exit polls are allowed to be published. Business Insider will be covering the events from London and across the country live throughout the country, so don’t go anywhere.
1656 — THE MARGINALS WHICH WILL DECIDE THE ELECTION
Business Insider’s Adam Bienkov and Adam Payne will be in three key marginal seats this evening to report on the areas which will decide the outcome of this election.
Bienkov will be reporting from the key south London marginal of Bermondsey and Old Southwark. Currently held by Labour’s Neil Coyle, the Lib Dems believe their candidate Simon Hughes — who held the seat for twenty years until 2015 — can win the seat back.
Payne will be reporting from Cumbria, where the key seats of Copeland and Barrow-and-Furness are up for grabs.
Labour source on Copeland: “It’s very close – we could take it back. Feels nothing like the by-election.”
The outcome of these counts will give important indications of wider voting patterns.
1645 — ELECTION NIGHT COVERAGE
Those planning to stay up and track the election overnight have three options for television coverage.
BBC’s coverage (starting at 2155 BST) will be co-hosted by David Dimbleby and Emily Maitlis, and feature punditry from old rivals George Osborne and Ed Balls.
Osborne was the Conservative chancellor of the exchequer between 2010 and 2016, while Balls was Labour’s shadow chancellor of the exchequer between 2011 and 2015.
Sky News’ coverage (starting at 2100) will be hosted by Sophie Ridge and Adam Boulton, while Channel 4’s traditional “Alternative Election Night” (kicking off at 2100) will feature Cathy Newman, Jeremy Paxman, and a host of celebrity pundits.
Tune in to C4 at 9pm for our #AlternativeElectionNight – co-produced with Zeppatron & includes Paxman, @RealDMitchell, @cathynewman & more.. pic.twitter.com/YOzQ9ovbN4
1633 — NEVER GONNA GIVE EU UP
Guy Verhofstadt, the lead Brexit negotiator for the European Parliament, hopes Britain will vote in favour of pro-EU parties. The MEP has previously expressed support for Tim Farron’s Liberal Democrats.
Hopefully, the British are voting with this picture in mind 🙂 pic.twitter.com/gafb81XHjZ
1600 — LATEST BETTING ODDS
Here are the latest betting odds from betting exchange Smarkets.
The chart below shows today’s price for a Conservative majority, with 88% the highest it reached this morning. As of 1600 BST, it is trading around the 82% mark.
Percentage prices shown give an implied probability.
1554 — TRAFALGAR SQUARE SCARE
Police briefly evacuated Trafalgar Square in central London following reports that a suspicious item had been found in a nearby street but the incident was quickly stood down and is not considered terrorism-related, Reuters reports.
Police are on heightened alert as millions of people vote in today’s election.
Specialist officers were dispatched to Trafalgar Square and nearby Charing Cross railway station was also closed as a precautionary incident.
1507 — EXIT POLLSTERS ARE GETTING READY
The exit poll, which will be published at 10 p.m., will be the first accurate indication of how voters have behaved at the ballot box.
The poll, jointly commissioned by the BBC, ITV, and Sky, is conducted by teams across the country quizzing voters as they leave polling stations.
Our cheerful teams outside over 100 polling stations for the Bbc/ITV/Sky 10pm Exit poll. Details of method here https://t.co/bhDL2FSP7t pic.twitter.com/O7ChKykS47
Read more about how eight voting scientists produce the exit poll in a profile from Bloomberg’s Rob Hutton.
1431 — WHAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS IN STORE FOR SAVERS
Investment firm Hargreaves Lansdown has taken a look at what the Conservative and Labour manifestos would mean for savers and investors.
Labour have made bigger promises on pensioner protections, pledging to stop all planned increases to the State Pension Age at 66 and guarantee the fuel allowance and free bus pass for everyone.
The Conservatives, meanwhile, reiterate a pledge to raise the personal allowance to £12,500 and the higher income tax rate to £50,000 by 2020.
1347 — POLLING PUBS
All kinds of buildings have temporarily been repurposed into polling stations today — even some pubs. Pictured is the Fox and Hounds public house in Christmas Common, Oxfordshire, where the good people of Watlington are casting their votes.
Reuters / Eddie Keogh
1325 — CAMERAMEN FIGHT AT POLLING STATION
New footage has been released of the fight between cameramen we reported earlier. The clip, published by the BBC, shows a group of cameramen jostling for position outside a polling station as Lib Dem leader Tim Farron left the building after casting his vote.
Fights at polling stations ? #BBCelection pic.twitter.com/Rvm17v5Mxi
1300 — LIB DEMS SET TO LOSE BIG NAMES?
Two men who will be waiting nervously for results to trickle in later are Lib Dem leader Tim Farron and former deputy PM Nick Clegg. Business Insider reported in May that the pair — who are the party’s two highest-profile MPs — face losing their seats.
Labour are reportedly confident of taking Clegg’s Sheffield Hallam seat, while the Conservatives believe they can take Westmorland and Lonsdale from Farron.
1242 — LABOUR PLANES
A plane trailing a “Vote Labour” banner has been spotted over Merseyside by Buzzfeed’s Jim Waterson.
THERE WE GO (as if any of you care). The Vote Labour plane circling over Merseyside, paid for by the Unite union rather than Labour. pic.twitter.com/4KFWkURnob
1234 — NME LAUNCHES YOUTH EXIT POLL
Music magazine NME, which splashed Jeremy Corbyn on its front cover last week, has launched an exit poll to determine how young people have voted at the ballot box.
The poll will ask a nationally representative sample of 1,000 18-34 year olds how they voted.
It opened at 7 a.m and will close at 9 p.m. The results will be announced at 10 p.m.
1217 — VOTING TURNOUT FIGURES
More people have registered to vote in the 2017 general election than the one two years ago, with 46.9 million people versus 46.4 million. But the question is what the turnout is likely to be.
There are debates over bad weather will affect people leaving their homes and going to vote — today there are some areas that experiencing downpours, like in Scotland:
It’s torrential rain and chilly in #Muirhouse, but Edinburgh West voters are braving it in a tight marginal says one party observer #GE2017 pic.twitter.com/0lP87oama6
While we won’t have any of the final information on voting turnout until after 10 p.m. BST, here are the turnout figures for the last few polling events:
- EU referendum: 72.2%.
- General election 2015: 66.4%.
- Scotland’s independence referendum: 84.6%.
- General election 2010: 65.1%.
- General election 2005: 61.4%.
1159 — TWITTER DEBATE STARTS OVER SOME VOTERS PROMOTING THE BURNING OF NEWSPAPERS
A number of people on Twitter are promoting the buying, then throwing away or burning, a number of newspapers.
just bought and swiftly binned (recycled!) every last sun, express and mail in my local store and you should do the same if you can afford
This morning I reignited the British spirit with the newsagents entire stock of Suns and Daily Mails. pic.twitter.com/5SPP1D8BTP
However, it has turned into a bit of a political theory debate on Twitter:
The arrogance of saying to people “I know what’s good for you so I’m going to block you reading newspapers I don’t like” is breathtaking
1134 — CAROLINE LUCAS, CO-LEADER OF THE GREEN PARTY, CASTS HER VOTE WITH HER FAMILY
Caroline Lucas, co-leader of the Green Party, cast her vote in Brighton with her husband Richard Savage, and son Issac.
1128 — BARTLEY, CO-LEADER OF THE GREEN PARTY CASTS HIS VOTE
Jonathan Bartley, who currently co-leads of the Green Party with Caroline Lucas, cast his vote with his daughter. However he is not standing for election this time round.
Feeling a v proud dad at the polling station with my eldest, who is voting for the first time! pic.twitter.com/loDlEw0kMQ
1123 — HERE IS THE PERFORMANCE OF THE POUND VS THE DOLLAR SINCE THE SNAP ELECTION WAS CALLED
1114 — SCOTTISH CONSERVATIVE LEADER RUTH DAVIDSON CASTS HER VOTE
Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson cast her vote in Edinburgh with her dog, called Wilson, who seems pretty heavy.
Team Davidson voting in Edinburgh this morning. Wilson’s #dogsatpollingstations debut… pic.twitter.com/QdM4cAmMMj
1105 — PEOPLE BET £100 MILLION ON THE GENERAL ELECTION
BI’s senior reporter Oscar Williams-Grut writes:
“Gamblers have bet £100 million on the outcome of Thursday’s UK General Election, according to new stats.
“BonusCodeBets.co.uk works closely with bookmakers and has collected figures from William Hill, Ladbrokes, Bet365.com, Coral, BetFred, and Betway on political betting.
“As recently as last Friday, just £30 million had been bet on the outcome of the election but bookmakers have seen a surge in interest in the final week before the election.”
Click here for the full story.
1057 — LIBERAL DEMOCRAT LEADER CASTS HIS VOTE
The leader of the Liberal Democrats, Tim Farron, arrived at a polling station in Kendal to cast his vote.
He was met with a scrum of reporters, which led to some arguments between photographers for getting in each other’s shots:
1045 — FTSE 100 FLAT
The stocks on the FTSE 100 are trading mostly flat as markets await the end of the general election. Exit polls will be available at 10 p.m. BST on Thursday, and by the time the European markets open on June 9 from 6 a.m. BST, Britain should get a final result.
1040 — STERLING VOLATILITY JUMPS
Implied volatility in the pound has spiked on Thursday.
BI’s markets reporter Will Martin writes:
“How Britain voted is anybody’s guess, and as a result, overnight sterling volatility — a measure of how much the British pound is expected to fluctuate — has jumped above 30%, hitting levels similar to those seen prior to the 2015 general election and ahead of the Scottish Independence referendum.
“That remains well below the 80% hit in the run up to the Brexit referendum last June.”
Read the full story here.
1020 — HERE’S WHAT WILL HAPPEN IN THE GENERAL ELECTION — ACCORDING TO FINAL OPINION POLLS SHOW
BI’s political reporter Adam Payne writes:
“Early in the campaign, May’s Conservatives enjoyed huge double-figure leads of up to 20% over Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party, suggesting the Prime Minister was strolling towards a landslide victory.
“However, in the final few weeks of the campaign Labour has closed the gap on the Conservatives, and last week respected pollsters YouGov said that Britain could end up with a hung parliament as a result of significant Tory losses.”
Here is the full article:
Here is what the final opinion polls think will happen in the General Election https://t.co/N0oPdjOKel pic.twitter.com/msfqevJjhJ
1011 — UKIP LEADER PAUL NUTTALL CAST HIS VOTE
Paul Nuttall, the leader of the UK Independence Party, cast his vote and did not take questions after a quick photocall:
0947 — LABOUR LEADER JEREMY CORBYN TURNS UP TO VOTE IN ISLINGTON, NORTH LONDON
Corbyn just cast his vote in Islington, north London and was greeted by a scrum of reporters. He said, “calm down, I’m not going anywhere.”
After he cast his vote, he said “this is a great day for our democracy” and added “I am very proud of our campaign.”
0940 — STURGEON AND MAY CAST THEIR VOTES
Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon cast her vote at a polling station at Broomhouse Community Hall in Glasgow.
Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Phillip just voted, in Sonning, Maidenhead.
0923 — ELMO HAS BEEN WAITING FOR THERESA MAY TO CAST HER VOTE
Since polling stations opened, a man dressed as Elmo waited outside a polling station in the village of Sonning, Berkshire, where Prime Minister Theresa May and her husband Philip are casting their votes.
Here is somebody dressed as Elmo waving to Theresa May as she arrives to vote pic.twitter.com/DlxSQ9ZGQ5
0920 — HERE ARE THE BETTING ODDS
Betfair sent us the following odds:
Tories have shortened into 1.05 (1/20) on “Most Seats” with Labour now out to 17.5 (16/1).
Tories have also moved to 1.16 (2/13) for an overall majority with no overall majority out to 8.2 (7/1).
0912 — SCOTTISH LABOUR LEADER CASTS HER VOTE
Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale outside the polling station at Wilson Memorial Church in Edinburgh:
0910 — FINAL POLLS FROM BEFORE VOTING STARTED
Latest post. At least one of the final polls, surely, will have got GE2017 right? https://t.co/CfSHodFZ3t pic.twitter.com/HNeaeckr1m
0856 — FOREIGN SECRETARY BORIS JOHNSON ASKED A “FORTUNE TELLER” WHO WILL WIN THE ELECTION
ITV caught a cringing moment on camera when Johnson asked a couple of “fortune tellers” who they thought would win the election. They didn’t give him the predictions he was hoping for:
BORIS JOHNSON ASKED A FORTUNE TELLER FOR A PREDICTION AND THIS HAPPENED pic.twitter.com/u8oGKPSThm
0850 — MASSIVE QUEUES FORM TO VOTE BEFORE WORK STARTS
Voting started at 7 a.m. BST and many people are trying to cast their vote before work starts. Across the country, people are posting pictures of massive lines forming — even in some “safe” seats for certain parties.
Queues round the corner at my polling station. Lady behind me says it’s the first time she’s seen a queue like this in 25 years.
Queue outside our polling station in Wandsworth easily 70/80 people long already #GE2017 pic.twitter.com/Rgj0nVdnNz
Huge queues at Rosendale Primary School Polling Station #GE2017 #DulwichandWestNorwood pic.twitter.com/7M5LAlY4ww
Queues going out the door at my polling station! ?#GeneralElection17 #brightonpavillion
0844 — SOMEONE IS USING THEIR GARAGE AS A POLLING STATION
In south London, one of the polling stations being used in Croydon is a garage attached to someone’s house. If you look closely, people are casting their votes next to someone’s fridge-freezer.
0830 — EXIT POLLS AT 10 P.M. BST
Exit polls will drop as soon as voting closes at 10 p.m. BST. Until then, by law, we are not allowed to publish exit polls indicating how people are voting.
The exit polls will be a result of a survey of 144 polling stations across Britain, jointly commissioned by the BBC, ITV, and Sky.
Exit polls are usually pretty accurate in forecasting who will win the general election. The results from last five elections matched exit polls closely.
0810 — IT HAS BEEN ONE HOUR SINCE VOTING BEGAN
Voting started at 7 a.m. BST and over the last hour, Brits have been flooding Twitter with their pictures of their dogs waiting patiently outside polling stations:
Decisions are made by those that show (p)up. Sprocket says VOTE! #dogsatpollingstations pic.twitter.com/aRIhQ2XJbF
Even prospective parliamentary candidates have brought their dogs along too, including Kevan Jones in North Durham:
Biff ready for Election Day. pic.twitter.com/jpg4ulj9rW
0800 — WEATHER IS A MIXED BAG
The weather across Britain is a mixed bag, with rain and storms predicted for some areas, according to BBC Weather:
0740 — DOGS AT POLLING STATIONS
Business Insider/Lianna Brinded
Pictures of dogs sitting obediently outside polling stations have become a British tradition on election day.
With the growth in social media use over the last decade, pictures of dogs, and occasionally other animals like horses, will flood the internet until voting ends at 10 p.m. BST.
0723 — GOOGLE DOES A GENERAL ELECTION DOODLE
0715 — REPORTING RESTRICTIONS
By law, the media is not allowed to report on certain things, during the voting period.
According to section 66A of the Representation of the People Act 1983 it is an offence to publish before the polls close at 10 p.m.:
“any statement relating to the way in which voters have voted at the election where that statement is (or might reasonably be taken to be) based on information given by voters after they have voted.”
When it comes to people volunteering information on social media, according to the Electoral Commission last year:
“A voter may volunteer information about who they voted for, provided no undue influence is exerted on them to do so.
“There is no explicit provision in law that prevents people from tweeting or re-tweeting that information. There is, however, provision to prevent exit polls to be published until polls have closed.”
0705 — RESULTS COULD COME IN EARLIER THAN EXPECTED
Usually, during a general election, which is meant to be once every five years, there are local elections too.
However since this is a snap general election, there are no local elections taking place and therefore results might come in earlier than usual.
If there is a big landslide victory, Britain can expect results from around 3 a.m. to 4 a.m. BST on June 9. However, if the race is a lot tighter, it could be a few hours after that until we know who won.
In the 2015 general election:
- Houghton and Sunderland South was the first seat to declare at 10.48 p.m. BST.
- A Conservative majority was not confirmed until 1.34 p.m. ET the following day.
This is a developing story …