EU referendum: Have your say - it's the future of our country!
AS the polls opened this morning, officials and EU referendum watchers were gearing up for an unprecedented turnout.
Voters are being urged to allow themselves plenty of time to cast their vote in the poll that has been mooted as the most important in generations.
Each council will conduct their own count and announce results locally. These will then be fed into the regional count.
In total, there are 382 local counting areas across the country.
The majority of counting areas are expected to declare their individual votes between 1am and 3am on Friday.
Yorkshire and Humber Regional Counting Officer Tom Riordan, said: “Anyone who is registered to vote in the EU Referendum will be able to exercise their democratic right on Thursday.
“Turnout is expected to be high, and with that in mind we would ask people to please plan their trips to polling stations carefully and ensure they leave themselves plenty of time to vote.
“Polling stations are open from 7am to 10pm on Thursday, so there’s plenty of opportunity to cast your vote.”
Both the remain and leave camps were on their respective trails throughout Yorkshire last night as they crammed in a fervent bout of last- minute campaigning in the region.
Former Labour leader Ed Miliband told voters that there is no “magic bullet” to Britain’s immigration crisis, an issue that has dominated the debate on both sides in the last few weeks.
He joined former shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Rachel Reeves MP at Mitie, a business strategy company in Thorpe Park, where they spoke to staff.
Mr Miliband, who is backing Labour In For Britain, said one solution to immigration levels is more investment in public services to relieve pressure.
Ms Reeves, MP for Kirstall, said EU migrants “contribute an awful lot” but it was important the immigration and benefits systems “is fair and reflects contribution”.
She added: “I also say don’t throw the baby out with the bath water because the real danger is people’s concerns about immigration are significant enough that they then vote for out but you do more damage to working people and public services by leaving because of the economic damage you would do.”
Boris Johnson was in Selby for the Leave campaign, arriving by helicopter as part of a whirlwind tour of England in a final push for votes.
He told activists: “I do think that we are on the verge, possibly, of an extraordinary event in the history of our country and indeed in the whole of Europe.”
Across the city, community leaders and dignitaries have been urging Leeds people to go out and have their say in a ballot that could shape our country for generations to come.
Sir Gary Verity, chief executive of Welcome to Yorkshire, said: “This is one of the most important decisions of generations. If you have the opportunity to vote, you must do so.
“The consequences of this vote – either way – will affect our country for years to come and it is vital that you have your say.”