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Make money from the local elections – be a poll clerk

Moneymagpie Team 15th Apr 2024 16 Comments

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Updated 15th April 2024

The local elections will be held on Thursday 2nd May 2024. Many people don’t realise that local elections are more than a chance to cast your vote — they are an opportunity to make money!

When you vote in any election, you’ll have noticed the poll clerks overseeing everything.

However, have you ever considered making a bit of extra cash as a poll clerk yourself? Can you make yourself free for the whole day?

If so, you can earn around £250 for a day’s work in a polling station. It’s a quick and easy money-making idea and ideal if you are retired or a student.

Who Can Become a Poll Clerk?

Make money from elections - be a poll clerk

Anyone is eligible to act as a poll clerk, providing they are over 18, literate and numerate and not have worked for a candidate standing in the current election. You must also have the right to work in the UK. There are some things you need to declare on your application form too, including whether you are a member of a political party, you’re an active campaigner in the elections, and if you’re a close relative of a current candidate. This may not go against your application chances, but it must be declared.

The only other requirement is that applicants must be on the electoral roll – if you’re not, you really should be. Not being on the electoral roll can damage your credit rating!

If you’re not on the electoral roll you can register to vote on the Government’s official website. You can also find your local Electoral Registration Office by clicking here. Alternatively, give your local authority a call. 

What’s Involved?

As a poll clerk, you are there to set-up the polling station and make sure correct procedure is followed throughout the day, including after voting closes.

Your duties include checking people are eligible to vote, checking and marking electoral numbers, stamping and issuing ballot papers, and, crucially, making certain that votes are cast in secret and put into the ballot box. For the first time ever, all in-person voting requires photographic ID at all polling stations in the UK for Parliamentary elections – so you’ll need to have a good eye for faces, because you’ll be checking voters’ IDs to confirm their identity.

You answer to the  Presiding Officer, who is the official in charge of a polling station.

It’s a long day, usually from early morning (usually 6am) till at least 11pm when the voting finishes.

You can also apply to help count the ballot papers in the evening, but be aware that this is, as you can probably imagine, pretty frantic work. You’ll need to be able to work well under pressure and also focus in busy environments.

For more information on the duties of a poll clerk, and the requirements to become one, look at the Handbook for Polling Station Staff here.

Make money from elections - be a poll clerk

 

How Much Can I Make?

The amount you earn varies from council to council so it depends on where you apply.

You should be getting at least £150 for the day and councils who pay the most will offer £250 or more.

To find out how much your local council pays, simply visit their website and search ‘poll clerk’. For a list of local authorities in England and Wales, click here.

It’s also worth bearing in mind that if you have worked at a polling station on at least two other occasions, you can apply to become a Presiding Officer, which means more money! (For example, a Presiding Officer in Herefordshire makes over £350 while in Merton, London, it is £430

There are other roles available which may not require you to be available for the full day. Bristol Council has some great videos and leaflets describing the different job roles and expectations.

How Do I Apply?

Usually, poll clerks have worked for their local council, but this experience is not a prerequisite. Most councils and local authorities have information on how to become a poll clerk on their website. Either visit their website and search ‘poll clerk’, or simply Google ‘become a poll clerk’ followed by your town, city, or council. For a list of council websites, click here

Alternatively, you can call your local authority and ask for the Elections and Registration Office, or send them an email telling them that you’re interested. They’ll send you a form if they need clerks. Don’t leave it until a week before an election to apply because the positions will probably already be filled – it’s better to apply sooner rather than later.

Some local authorities recruit all year round so you can keep applying and be put on a waiting list for the next election.

If you are selected as a poll clerk you will attend a training/briefing session and then be sworn in the day before the election.

On Election Day, a Presiding Officer oversees the whole station and will supervise and instruct you.

Have you ever made money as a polling clerk? Do you have any other good money making ideas? Let us know in the comments section below – we love to hear from you!

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Teodora
Teodora
10 days ago

BY THE WAY, WE IN BULGARIA HAVE SOPMETIMES THAT PRACTICE TOO!

KIND REGARDS,

TEODORA

SOFIA

7.5.2024

Teodora
Teodora
10 days ago

LOCAL STATIONS?

A GOOD IDEA!

BUT YOU HAVE TO CHECK EXACTLY THE DIRECTIO WHERE YOU ARE GOING!

KIND REGARDS,

TEODORA

7.5.2024

SOFIA

Jasmine Birtles

Your money-making expert. Financial journalist, TV and radio personality.

Jasmine Birtles

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