Police patrols at borough polling stations

St Matthias School Polling Station in Bethnal Green. Photo: Alex Bishop

St Matthias School Polling Station in Bethnal Green. Photo: Alex Bishop

Police officers are present at polling stations across the borough today as Londoners vote in the Mayoral and Greater London Assembly elections.

Following the announcement earlier this week of a Metropolitan Police investigation into electoral fraud in Tower Hamlets, the presence of Met officers is to guard against further electoral irregularities.

At St Matthias Church of England Primary School, Bacon Street, Bethnal Green this afternoon there were a number of police officers and vehicles present.

On April 26 and April 28, the Met received allegations of electoral fraud in Tower Hamlets.  It was reported by The London Evening Standard that police would be stationed at all 70 polling stations in the borough today in response to the developments.

A spokesperson from Tower Hamlets Council told East London Lines: “We work to the full extent of our powers to ensure the electoral register is as accurate as possible – in fact we conducted extra visits to over 4,700 electors in the days before the register closed. As a result we removed 890 electors from the list as they had moved on. We also encourage residents to report any suspicious activity to us and to the Police – whose duty it is to investigate.

“However it is important not to confuse fraudulent activity with a register that changes by up to 20 per cent a month because we have a population that is highly mobile – our borough includes a high proportion of students and restaurant workers. The borough would support moves to strengthen the law to make it harder to commit electoral fraud.”


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