More than 50 polling stations will open across Exeter when the city goes to the polls to elect a third of its councillors next month.

On Thursday 2 May elections are being held to choose one city councillor for each of the 13 wards. At the same time, voters will select a police and crime commissioner for Devon and Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

Around 90,000 people in Exeter are eligible to vote, with around 16,000 having applied to take part by post. The turnout in the city council elections last year – when a different third of the council was elected – was 36 per cent. The turnout for the last police and crime commissioner election in 2021 was 37 per cent.

When the polls close at 10pm, the presiding officer from each of the 55 polling stations will deliver their ballot box to the Riverside Leisure Centre for votes to be verified. Counting is then likely to go on late into the night.

Results will be announced by the returning officer, Exeter City Council’s chief executive Bindu Arjoon.

In all, 61 candidates are standing for the 13 available city council seats – 13 for each of the Conservative, Green, Labour and Liberal Democrat Parties as well as nine Independent candidates.

Exmouth Journal: Cllr Phil Bialyk, leader of Exeter City Council.Cllr Phil Bialyk, leader of Exeter City Council. (Image: LDRS)

Seven existing city councillors are not standing for re-election. They are Steve Warwick (Lab), who was first elected in May 2016; Barbara Denning (Lab), most recently the portfolio holder for council housing, who was first elected in May 2021; Martin Pearce (Lab), who was portfolio holder for communities and homelessness and was first elected in May 2021; Richard Branston (Lab) who was first elected in 2000; Zion Lights (Lab), who was the city’s Net Zero champion and was first elected in May 2021; Amy Sparling (Green) who was also first elected in May 2021 and former Conservative group leader Andrew Leadbetter, who was first elected in 2012.

The current composition of the 13 seats available is that seven are Labour seats, two Conservatives, one Green, two independents and one vacancy.

Among the notable councillors seeking re-election are Labour leader Phil Bialyk, who represents Exwick and has led the council since 2019 and Conservative group leader Anne Jobson (St Loyes).

Labour currently has an overall majority on the council, with 23 of the 39 total seats. The Green Party is the next largest group with six seats, followed by the Conservatives with four, Liberal Democrats with three and two Independents. One seat in Mincinglake and Whipton is currently vacant.

Exmouth Journal: Conservative group leader Anne Jobson is also seeking re-election.Conservative group leader Anne Jobson is also seeking re-election. (Image: Exeter City Council)

Whatever happens on election day, Labour will remain the largest party on Exeter City Council.

However, it could lose its overall majority.

The count for the Exeter element of the police and crime commissioner election will take place at the Riverside Leisure Centre from 11am the next day. Once the result of the vote for Exeter has been declared, the overall result will be announced in Plymouth, later on Friday.

Voters in all polls will need to take photo ID to the polling stations with them. This could include a passport; photographic driving licence; a blue badge or a bus pass.

Original documents are required, not copies or scanned images.

The city council election candidates are: 

Alphington Ward – HARDING Rob, Labour Party; HARRELD Mark Jeffrey, Independent; HARRISON, Benn Elliott, The Green Party; HORNER Jamie Liam, Liberal Democrat; NEW Katherine Helen Judy, The Conservative Party Candidate.

Duryard and St. James Ward – BADCOTT Tony, Labour and Co-operative Party; LEE Martha Sylvia, The Green Party; MORE O`FERRALL Rory Fouad, The Conservative Party Candidate; PALMER Tammy Catherine, Liberal Democrat.

Exwick Ward – BIALYK Philip Michael, Labour and Co-operative Party; CURNOCK Charles Anthony, Liberal Democrat; HELIANTHUS Eric Sinclair, The Green Party; LUSCOMBE Kayleigh Michelle Suzanne, The Conservative Party Candidate; RUFOLO Frankie, Independent.

Heavitree Ward – COLLACOTT Joan Marilyn, The Conservative Party Candidate; EADE Jack, The Green Party; HAIGH Lucy, Independent; MUTTON Dave, Labour Party; RUFFLE Rod, Liberal Democrat.

Mincinglake and Whipton Ward – BROWN Oscar Harold, The Conservative Party Candidate; HUTCHINGS Clive Alan, Independent; PAYNE Michael Geoffrey, Liberal Democrat; POLE Liz, Labour Party; STEPHAN Alex, The Green Party.

Newtown and St. Leonard`s Ward – BROCK Philip John, Liberal Democrat; CABRERA Julian Edward, Labour Party; SIMMONDS Paul, Independent; SPARKES Keith Andrew, The Conservative Party Candidate; WETENHALL Lynn Susan, The Green Party.

Pennsylvania Ward – HUGHES Zoë Jane, Labour Party; HUNT Jack, The Conservative Party Candidate; JARMAN Victoria, Independent; VICKERS Jack David, The Green Party; WILLIAMS Nigel David, Liberal Democrat.

Pinhoe Ward – CAMPION Christine Anne, Liberal Democrat; HUSSAIN Jakir, Labour and Co-operative Party; JAGO Kate, The Green Party; SIMMONDS Susan, Independent; THOMPSON David John, The Conservative Party Candidate.

Priory Ward – ABDULRAZAQ Tal, Independent; LUSCOMBE David, The Conservative Party Candidate; MULLETT Heather Ursula, The Green Party; THOMAS Philip Alexander, Liberal Democrat; WARDLE Tony, Labour Party.

St. David`s Ward – BANYARD James John, The Green Party; NEWBY Rob, The Conservative Party Candidate; STUART Ellen Miriam, Labour and Co-operative Party, WRIGHT Harry, Liberal Democrat.

St. Loye`s Ward – BONETTA Jake, Labour and Co-operative Party; BUTTERS Timothy Robert, Liberal Democrat; HANCOCK Deb, The Green Party; JOBSON Anne Margaret, The Conservative Party Candidate.

St. Thomas Ward – BRAGG Andy, The Green Party; CARR Ashley, The Conservative Party Candidate; DARLING Deborah Charlotte, Labour and Co-operative Party; HANNAFORD Rob, Independent; NEWCOMBE Alexandra Vanessa, Liberal Democrat.

Topsham Ward – FINCH Sarah Jane, The Green Party; ROLSTONE Gemma Lorraine, Labour Party; THOMPSON Cynthia, The Conservative Party Candidate; WILLIAMSON Alan, Liberal Democrat.

Police and crime commissioner candidates are:

HERNANDEZ Alison, The Conservative Party – More Police, Safer Streets; LODGE Steve, Liberal Democrats – For a Fair Deal; STEEL Daniel, Labour and Co-operative Party.