Types of Elections
There are several different types of elections that you may be eligible to vote in. Click on the links below to find out more:
- UK Parliamentary Election
- Local Government Elections
- Scottish Parliamentary Elections
- European Parliamentary Elections
- Cairngorm National Park Authority Elections
- By Elections / Referendums
Members of Parliament (MP's) are elected using a First Past the Post System (FPTP). The UK Parliament currently has a maximum 5-year life span, although the Prime Minister may request that the Queen calls a General Election at any time within the Parliament's lifetime. In Aberdeenshire electors vote to return MP's for the Banff and Buchan, Gordon or West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine constituencies, although the boundaries are different to those used for Scottish Parliamentary Elections. Those elected sit in the Westminster Parliament. A General Election requires to be held by 2015.
The Scottish Government is responsible for Local Government Elections in Scotland and Scottish Ministers issue rules for the way they are conducted. Elections are held to elect Councillors to 32 unitary local authorities in Scotland. The next Local Government Election will be held in 2012. Aberdeenshire Council has 68 Councillors who cover 19 electoral wards. Since 3 May 2007, Councillors have been elected through the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system which allows voters to express a preference for more than one candidate. The next scheduled election is on 3 May 2012.
There are currently 129 elected members in the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood, of which 73 are constituency members and 56 are list members.
Scottish Parliamentary Elections use the Additional Member System (AMS) where each voter has two votes. One of these elects a constituency MSP using the first past the post system, and the other elects regional representatives from a list of political parties and individual candidates. The elections take place every four years and, depending where you live in Aberdeenshire, you can currently vote to return a constituency MSP for either the Banffshire and Buchan Coast, Aberdeenshire East or Aberdeenshire West constituencies, as well as list MSPs for the North East Scotland Region. The next election is expected in 2016.
The UK is divided into twelve regions, each of which has between 3 and 10 MEP’s representing the area. Aberdeenshire is part of the Scotland region, currently returning seven MEP’s elected every five years using a closed list system. MEP's sit in the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The next election is scheduled to take place in 2014.
Aberdeenshire Council is responsible for running elections to Ward 5 of the Cairngorm National Park Authority. Elections take place every four years on an all-postal basis, with the next one scheduled for 2015.
A By Election occurs due to a vacancy caused by the death or resignation of an elected representative. It can take place during any of the standard Election cycles, and is subject to the timetable for normal elections. Referendums are relatively rare in the UK, but can take place at any time. A referendum on the voting system for UK General Elections took place on 5 May 2011.
Use our ‘Who is my Representative’ page to find out who represents you at a local, national or European level.
Future Elections are expected to take place as follows:
|3 May 2012||Local Government Elections (Scotland)|
|June 2014||European Parliamentary Elections|
|March 2015||Cairngorm National Park Authority Elections|
|May 2015||UK Parliamentary Elections|
|May 2016||Scottish Parliamentary Elections|