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Election 2019: Boris Johnson among the voters to cast their ballot

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‘Biggest queue I’ve EVER seen at my polling station’: Turnout looks huge as thousands are ALREADY lining up to vote in Britain’s most crucial election in a generation – as Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn give final call to arms

  • Polling stations are open from 7am until 10pm, when an exit poll will give the first indication of the results
  • Boris Johnson voted in Westminster at around 8am and Jeremy Corbyn in Islington expected at 9.30am 
  • Results in key seats are expected from 2am tomorrow and the next PM should be known by 6am Friday
  • Early results in Labour strongholds in the North East could show early signs of a swing to the Conservatives 
  • Results will come pouring in from around 3am, with big names including Iain Duncan Smith at risk of losing 
  • Tory strategists believe key to victory is grabbing Labour heartlands including Workington and Grimsby

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Voters were stuck in the biggest queues seen at polling stations for years today as millions took part in Britain’s most important election for a generation with their decision expected to make-or-break Brexit. 

Thousands snaked around the block outside schools, village halls, churches, pubs and other community buildings in the wet and cold to exercise their democratic right at the UK’s 50,000 polling stations from 7am.

The largest queues were seen in London’s marginal seats where many were late for work and described the busiest election day they had seen for decades in a vote being treated by many as a second EU referendum. 

Hundreds waited for up to 45 minutes to vote in Battersea, Bow, Brixton, Clapham, Wandsworth and Woolwich in the capital as well as in Greater Manchester, Leeds and Birmingham as Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn battle to become the next Prime Minister.  

Experts have said the crowds suggest that the turnout for the first December general election since 1923 could be the highest since Clement Atlee and Sir Winston Churchill battled to be PM in the 1950s and 1960s. Turnouts have been dropping in the UK since Tony Blair’s landslide victory in 1997.

After six weeks on the campaign trail, Boris Johnson gave his dog Dilyn a big kiss and voted early at the nearest polling station to No 10 Downing Street – but was without his partner Carrie Symonds on the biggest day of his political life after she backed the Tories in Richmond.

The Tory leader was voting at the Methodist Central Hall next to Westminster Abbey rather than in his Uxbridge constituency – a highly unusual move because outgoing prime ministers traditionally vote where they are standing as candidates. 

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, accompanied by his wife Laura, also voted early in his Islington North constituency with the election said to be on a knife-edge, according to recent polls. 

As the polls opened this morning Mr Johnson tweeted: ‘Today is our chance to get Brexit done. Vote Conservative’ while Mr Corbyn wrote on social media: ‘Vote Labour today to save our NHS, to bring about real change and create a country that works for the many, not the few’. 

Voters have described the longest queues they have ever seen at polling stations, including here in Putney, south-west London, as Britain holds a generation-defining election with the future of Brexit at its heart 

Dozens of people queue at the polling station in Effra road, Brixton, raising hopes of a big turnout for the crucial election

queues at polling station in Larcom Street, Bermondsey and Old Southwark

Dozens of people queue at the polling station in Effra road, Brixton, (left) and in Bermondsey in south-east London (right) raising hopes of a big turnout for the crucial election

in Woolwich, south-east London, a safe Labour seat, queues formed at a town centre polling station this morning

in Woolwich, south-east London, a safe Labour seat, queues formed at a town centre polling station this morning

More than 100 people were queuing to vote in Ancoats, Manchester, today with delays to vote in nearby Bury too

More than 100 people were queuing to vote in Ancoats, Manchester, today with delays to vote in nearby Bury too

More than 100 people were queuing to vote in Ancoats, Manchester, today (left) with delays to vote in nearby Bury (right) too

Voters in Bow, east London queue up to vote at a cafe/art gallery being used to serve the electorate today

Voters in Bow, east London queue up to vote at a cafe/art gallery being used to serve the electorate today

Boris Johnson brings his dog Dilyn to vote at Westminster’s Methodist Central Hall this morning – the polling station closest to Downing Street

Boris Johnson gave his dog Dilyn a big kiss as the Tory leader voted early as polling day for Britain's most important election for a generation got underway today.

Boris Johnson gave his dog Dilyn a big kiss as the Tory leader voted early as polling day for Britain's most important election for a generation got underway today

Boris Johnson gave his dog Dilyn a big kiss as the Tory leader voted early as polling day for Britain’s most important election for a generation got underway today

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and his wife Laura Alvarez were joined by supporters as he came to vote in  North Islington

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and his wife Laura Alvarez were joined by supporters as he came to vote in  North Islington

Carrie Symonds,  Boris Johnson's new partner, took Dilyn and its sibling Lettice to support Zac Goldsmith in Richmond

Carrie Symonds,  Boris Johnson’s new partner, took Dilyn and its sibling Lettice to support Zac Goldsmith in Richmond

Millions of voters face inclement weather with torrential rain and ice predicted across vast swathes of the country before the polls close at 10pm. 

Shock new poll reveals the tightest Tory lead over Labour yet as voting starts in the Brexit election as just FIVE POINTS separates the two main parties 

The Tory lead over Labour has been whittled down to its narrowest of the whole election with just five points separating the parties as voting starts, a shock poll revealed today.

Boris Johnson’s party is on 41 per cent but Mr Corbyn’s leftwingers have made up ground and are now on 36 per cent, according to Savanta ComRes.

It came as polling stations across the country opened in a Christmas election that will shape the future course of Brexit.

Opinion polls have shown a variety of leads for Mr Johnson in recent weeks but today’s numbers for the Telegraph may cause some concern in Number 10.

However other polls show a wider margin of victory for Mr Johnson but with Labour gaining ground.

A survey conducted by Opinium between December 10-11 puts the Tories on 45 per cent overall, down one point on the company’s work published last week.

Labour is up two points in the poll to 33 per cent, giving the Tories a 12 point lead as Britain prepares to go to the ballot box.

Almost one in ten voters are yet to make up their mind about how they will cast their vote. 

Last night Security Minister Brandon Lewis appeared to heap pressure on Mr Johnson to achieve a comfortable margin of victory.

He was asked on ITV’s Peston, asked what number would make a good working majority for the Conservative Party in Thursday’s election.

‘I think it would be really good to get a majority like we had before, something 20 to 30 upwards,’ he said.

‘But that’s going to be hard work, you know we’ve got to make sure we’re gaining every single vote tomorrow, every vote matters, we’ve all seen the polls over the last couple of days which show that there is all to play for for everybody, that every vote is going to matter.’  

An exit poll will give the first indication of the results and votes will then be counted overnight with the first results expected by 11pm and a clearer picture of who will be the next Prime Minister between 2am and 4am tomorrow.

A major YouGov poll on Tuesday predicted a 28-seat Tory majority – the largest since 1987 – but pollsters said the situation was so volatile that Britain could face another hung parliament. 

A No 10 spokesman confirmed that Mr Johnson had taken the unusual step to register to vote in Downing Street rather than his Uxbridge constituency.

‘The Prime Minister was proud to vote for Nickie Aiken, the fantastic Conservative candidate for the Cities of London and Westminster, who is committed to voting for the PM’s Brexit deal and getting Brexit done by January 31,’ she added.

Members of the public in a number of London constituencies have had to queue around street corners to vote in some of the busiest conditions they have seen.

‘I’ve voted at the same station and time for eight years, but have never had to queue before,’ said Craig Fordham, 45, from Putney, who had to wait for 15 minutes.

Chris Schofield queued for 20 minutes in the Bermondsey and Old Southwark constituency.

‘It’s about 20 times busier than it was in 2017, and for the locals and Euro elections,’ the 27-year-old consultant told PA.

‘Atmosphere is very London: orderly queueing and no-one is talking to each other!’

Mr Schofield said there were over 70 voters waiting outside, adding that there were at least three officers working at the station but only one taking addresses from voters.

Asked why he thought there were so many queuing, he said: ‘I think it’s the election of a lifetime for many of us.’

Alixe Bovey said she was queueing for 35 minutes in the Streatham constituency.

Sharing a photo of the queue outside her local station, she tweeted: ‘In 20 years of voting in Streatham Hill, always at about this time of day, I have never encountered a queue of more than six or seven people.

‘What is going on. The tailback is right up the road now.’

Ms Bovey said: ‘No idea what it means in my constituency – I’m in a super safe Labour seat.’

Voters in Bermondsey, south east London, faced difficulty getting to one polling station after an apparent burst water water main caused flooding in the road around it.

Hannah Tookey, who waded through the water to cast her vote, tweeted: ‘It was too deep to wade through the middle, even in wellies.’

Another voter, Graham Kings, was prevented from voting by the flooding in Bermondsey.

He said: ‘I could have gone home and put wellington boots on and waded across the flooded road to try to get in, but had to go to work and so will vote this evening.’

Boris Johnson yesterday said he was ‘fighting for every vote’, and made a final, impassioned appeal to voters last night as he warned the most important General Election in a generation was teetering on a ‘knife-edge’. 

In a final eve-of-poll rally in London, Mr Johnson said there was a ‘very real risk of another hung parliament’ – and the ‘nightmare’ of a Jeremy Corbyn-led coalition that would follow.

He pleaded with voters to instead deliver a Conservative majority that could unite the country, ‘smash through the Parliamentary gridlock’ and get Brexit done. Mr Johnson even issued a direct appeal to Leave voters who had always voted Labour, saying: ‘Even if you have never voted Conservative before, this is your chance to be heard and I promise I will not let you down.

‘A great future is there within our grasp, but I need your vote.’ 

Voters reported long queues and waits of up to 45 minutes when in the past they were done and dusted in jut a few minutes, suggesting the turnout could be very high today

Voters reported long queues and waits of up to 45 minutes when in the past they were done and dusted in jut a few minutes, suggesting the turnout could be very high today

Voters reported long queues and waits of up to 45 minutes when in the past they were done and dusted in jut a few minutes, suggesting the turnout could be very high today

There were large queues at the University of Kent in Canterbury, a seat Labour is desperate to keep hold of

There were large queues at the University of Kent in Canterbury, a seat Labour is desperate to keep hold of

Queues of voters snaked from the doorways and sometimes around the block in Battersea, Clapham and north London today (top left to bottom right)

Queues of voters snaked from the doorways and sometimes around the block in Battersea, Clapham and north London today (top left to bottom right)

Queues of voters snaked from the doorways and sometimes around the block in Battersea, Clapham and north London today (top left to bottom right)

Voters go to the polls in the granary of Grade II listed Thelnetham Windmill on the Norfolk/Suffolk border

Voters go to the polls in the granary of Grade II listed Thelnetham Windmill on the Norfolk/Suffolk border

Voters in the village of Carlton, Cambridgeshire voting in a caravan for today's general election

Voters in the village of Carlton, Cambridgeshire voting in a caravan for today’s general election

This horse was taken by its owner to this polling station in Wiltshire as people braved the wet and cold weather across the country

This horse was taken by its owner to this polling station in Wiltshire as people braved the wet and cold weather across the country

Nuns from Tyburn Convent cast their vote at St John’s church in west London

Philip, 61, and Julie Jones, 60, outside the polling station in Nenthead, on the Cumbria and Northumberland border, with snow, ice and freezing rain forecast across the UK today

Philip, 61, and Julie Jones, 60, outside the polling station in Nenthead, on the Cumbria and Northumberland border, with snow, ice and freezing rain forecast across the UK today

Students from the University of Reading arrive to vote in the General Election 2019 ahead of their December graduation ceremonies later

Students from the University of Reading arrive to vote in the General Election 2019 ahead of their December graduation ceremonies later

But voters in this area of Bermondsey after a burst water main on the busy Jamaica Road flooded the area

But voters in this area of Bermondsey after a burst water main on the busy Jamaica Road flooded the area 

Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn have tweeted today and both hope to win the election and become the next PM

Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn have tweeted today and both hope to win the election and become the next PM

Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn have tweeted today and both hope to win the election and become the next PM

Jeremy Corbyn posed for a selfie outside his local polling station with a hung Parliament a major possibility according to the polls

Jeremy Corbyn posed for a selfie outside his local polling station with a hung Parliament a major possibility according to the polls

A member of Jeremy Corbyn's security detail argues with a person dressed as Sesame Street character Elmo, who is standing against Boris Johnson in Uxbridge

A member of Jeremy Corbyn’s security detail argues with a person dressed as Sesame Street character Elmo, who is standing against Boris Johnson in Uxbridge

Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson and her partner Duncan Hames arrive to cast their votes at Castlehill Primary School in Glasgow this morning

Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson and her partner Duncan Hames arrive to cast their votes at Castlehill Primary School in Glasgow this morning

Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon arrives to vote in the general election in Glasgow this morning

Caroline Lucas (L), Green MP arrives with her son to cast her vote at a polling station in Brighton this morning

Caroline Lucas (L), Green MP arrives with her son to cast her vote at a polling station in Brighton this morning

DUP leader Arlene Foster arrives at a polling station in Enniskillen, in Northern Ireland, to cast her vote

DUP leader Arlene Foster arrives at a polling station in Enniskillen, in Northern Ireland, to cast her vote

Voters will face rain and gales in many parts of the country as they go to the polls in the first December election for almost a century.

Voters slowly becoming more interested in general elections after New Labour slump 

Turnout at general elections has been on the rise ever since the turn of the century.

And this year it may be more important than for many years with the nation’s future outside – or inside – the European Union potentially resting on how many people haul themselves to the polling stations.

High turnout is not necessarily a good thing for political parties. What they want is high turnout among their own supporters and low turnout among opposition voters, praying they will be uninspired by campaigning.

Where turnout is key is in marginal seats, which is why money, time and activists are poured into these areas. It can make all the difference between winning or losing. 

It is less important in areas where people have such huge majorities it is inconceivable -usually – that there will be an upset.

So politicos will be anxiously looking at turnout in early declaring Labour marginals in the North and Midlands. 

They could indicate how likely seas are to change hands. If Boris Johnson has succeeded in activating the Leave vote in former Labour heartlands he has one foot back in Number 10. 

If however Labour has managed to woo voters – or attract tactical votes – then we could be heading for another hung parliament.  

Some 68.8 per cent of the electorate turned out in 2017 for the first vote since the Brexit referendum. 

That was an increase from 66.2 per cent just two years previously, as part of an upswing going back to 2005.

At the last election the south and south west of England, and London, saw the highest turnout, with all posting more than 70 per cent.

The lowest was in Northern Ireland (65.4 per cent) followed by the North East (66 per cent) and Scotland (66.4 per cent).

Voting numbers took a huge dip after the 1997 Labour landslide by Tony Blair. Four years later just 59.4 per cent turned out to return him to office and end William Hague’s tenure as Tory leader.

That turnout was the lowest recorded at a general election since 1918, when the country was recovering from the First World War. 

Numbers are still below where they were in the 1980s when Margaret Thatcher won back-to-back elections before John Major’s unexpected Tory win in 1992. 

The highest turnout since universal suffrage – where all adults can vote –  was introduced in 1918 was in 1950, when 83.9 per cent of voters turned out to return Labour’s Clement Attlee to power.

However he lasted just another year, when his majority of five was overturned in the 1951 election and Winston Churchill became prime minister again. 

Despite the final polls predicting a narrow Conservative win, Tory strategists fear they could be denied a majority by tactical voting by Remainers and low turnout among Leave voters. Mr Johnson’s appeal came as: 

  • Mr Corbyn boasted that an army of thousands of Labour activists would get out the voters needed to propel him to power, saying he was on course to ‘shock the Establishment’;
  • An eve-of-election poll revealed that 9 per cent of voters remain undecided, meaning the result could be determined by ‘hovering pencils’ across the country;
  • Another survey put the Tory lead on just five points. The Savanta ComRes poll for The Daily Telegraph put the Conservatives on 41 per cent ahead of Labour on 36 per cent.
  • Leave supporters were warned to vote Conservative or risk ‘throwing away Brexit for ever’, as new polling analysis revealed the Brexit Party could let in Labour in dozens of seats;
  • A leading City figure warned that Labour’s assault on business could lead to millions of workers losing an average of more than £11,000 from their pension pots;
  • Maureen Lipman warned in an article for the Mail that five years of a Corbyn government ‘would be a stain on all us’; 
  • The Conservatives poured activists into the seats of Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and Environment Secretary Theresa Villiers after polling suggested they could be ousted;
  • Jo Swinson launched a bid to encourage tactical voting, telling Labour supporters to back her party to keep the Conservatives out. In Stockton South, one Lib Dem candidate even urged people to vote Labour to prevent a Tory win;
  • Nicola Sturgeon confirmed she would demand a second referendum on breaking up the UK next year as her price for propping a minority Labour government.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn was greeted by a small number of supporters as he arrived to cast his vote in north London.

A protester dressed as Elmo, a character from children’s TV programme Sesame Street, was restrained by security guards as she tried to approach Mr Corbyn as he entered the polling station.

As the woman in fancy dress argued with security and police, Mr Corbyn said: ‘Hello guys, can we stop the arguments please.’

He later posed for photographs with well-wishers outside the polling station.

Mr Corbyn arrived to cast his vote at Pakeman Primary School in Islington with his wife Laura Alvarez at around 9.25am.

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has cast her vote in the General Election campaign.

The SNP leader was joined by her partner Peter Murrell, as well as the party’s Glasgow East candidate David Linden, at Broomhouse Community Hall in Uddingston.

Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard cast his vote at Ralston Community Centre in Paisley.

Scottish Conservative leader Jackson Carlaw is voting in Clarkston and Scottish Greens co-leaders Patrick Harvie and Lorna Slater are casting their ballots in Glasgow and Edinburgh.

The leader of the Democratic Unionist Party Arlene Foster has cast her vote in Co Fermanagh in the General Election campaign.

Mrs Foster arrived at the polling station at Brookeborough Primary School shortly after 10am.

She stopped to speak to a number of other voters, including local DUP councillor Paul Robinson.    

A man dressed as Father Christmas walks from his grotto to vote at the Dunster Tithe Barn near Minehead, Somerse

A man dressed as Father Christmas walks from his grotto to vote at the Dunster Tithe Barn near Minehead, Somerse

Chris Johnson (left), 62, does her knitting as she talks with colleague Christine Habberjam, 72, while awaiting people to vote at the polling station in Nenthead Village Hall in Cumbria

Chris Johnson (left), 62, does her knitting as she talks with colleague Christine Habberjam, 72, while awaiting people to vote at the polling station in Nenthead Village Hall in Cumbria

Sarah Sutton and Annie Price from the Somerset Reindeer Ranch take their reindeer to the Village Hall in Chilthorne Domer

Sarah Sutton and Annie Price from the Somerset Reindeer Ranch take their reindeer to the Village Hall in Chilthorne Domer

Chelsea Pensioners leave after casting their votes at the world famous Royal Hospital in west London

Chelsea Pensioners leave after casting their votes at the world famous Royal Hospital in west London 

Voters in Hartlepool used this rather unusual polling station - a shipping container

Voters in Hartlepool used this rather unusual polling station – a shipping container

The polls in the Brexmas election have opened including here at Riverhead village hall near Sevenoaks in Kent

Monks from Nunraw Abbey cast their vote at Garvald Village Hall near Haddington in East Lothian, Scotland

Monks from Nunraw Abbey cast their vote at Garvald Village Hall near Haddington in East Lothian, Scotland

A couple arrive to vote in the rain at a polling station in Dobcross near Oldham, in Greater Manchester

A couple arrive to vote in the rain at a polling station in Dobcross near Oldham, in Greater Manchester

A woman exits a polling station in a wet and windy Birchgrove, Cardiff, this morning

A woman exits a polling station in a wet and windy Birchgrove, Cardiff, this morning

A lit Christmas tree greets voters at the hamlet of Christmas Common in Oxfordshire as Britain embarks on one of its most important peace time elections

A lit Christmas tree greets voters at the hamlet of Christmas Common in Oxfordshire as Britain embarks on one of its most important peace time elections

Voters also turned up early at the Oulton Institute in the Leeds West constituency held last time by Labour's Rachel Reeves

Voters also turned up early at the Oulton Institute in the Leeds West constituency held last time by Labour’s Rachel Reeves

The statue of Sir Winston Churchill - Britain's greatest ever PM - looks on to the Houses of Parliament as a new government will be elected by Britain today

The statue of Sir Winston Churchill – Britain’s greatest ever PM – looks on to the Houses of Parliament as a new government will be elected by Britain today 

Bomb squad carry out controlled explosion on ‘suspicious device’ found at polling station

A bomb squad carried out a controlled explosion after a suspicious object was found at a polling station early this morning.

Residents of the Glen Tower flats in Motherwell, North Lanarkshire, were evacuated at 1am after the device was found.

The building was cordoned off before the controlled explosion was carried out.

Neighbour Robert McCristall wrote on Twitter: ‘Looks out the window of the building where I live and there’s a ‘bomb disposal truck’ down below, and it’s also the polling station for the general election.

‘Not sure if there’s a connection’.

A spokesman for Police Scotland said: ‘We received a report of what was described as a suspicious device on the ground floor of Glen Tower flats, Motherwell around 1am on Thursday, December 12.

‘A cordon has been placed around the building, residents within the cordon have been evacuated and a controlled explosion has been carried out by Explosive Ordnance Device staff as a precaution.

‘Enquiries are ongoing to establish how viable the device was and the full circumstances surrounding the incident.’

North Lanarkshire Council advised voters that they should attend Knowetop Primary School in Knowetop Avenue in Motherwell from 7am.

One detailed analysis yesterday revealed that Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party could help Labour hold on in many seats which would otherwise be taken by the Tories. Yesterday, Mr Johnson made an extraordinary 500-mile dash around the country in a final pitch for the votes he needs to secure victory.

After delivering milk in Guiseley, West Yorkshire, working in the kitchen at a catering firm in Derby – sporting an apron emblazoned with ‘Get Brexit Done’ – and a quick flight to Cardiff, Mr Johnson delivered his final campaign address in tub-thumping style at the Olympic Park in east London.

He told voters: ‘This election is our chance to end the gridlock but the result is on a knife-edge. To every one of you who is fed up with the endless arguments and wants to move on, every one of you who wants us to respect the referendum result and deliver the change people voted for, every one of you who wants us to focus on a positive, united future, every one of you who worries about the chaos of a Corbyn-Sturgeon alliance in a hung parliament, my message is simple.

‘Give me a majority and I will finish what we started – what you instructed us to do – three and a half years ago. A great future is there within our grasp, but I need your vote.’

And in a homely appeal to voters weary of Westminster’s long-running Brexit farce, Mr Johnson added: ‘Just imagine how wonderful it will be to settle down to a turkey dinner this Christmas with Brexit decided –and how awful it would be if Corbyn and Sturgeon were in Downing Street advancing their plans for two more referendums.’ He warned that Labour would ‘wreck our economy, with more borrowing and higher taxes’. 

Mr Corbyn insisted he was on course to win despite a faltering campaign in which his manifesto has been branded ‘not credible’ by independent experts, his own health spokesman suggested he could not be trusted with national security, and the Chief Rabbi issued an unprecedented warning that Britain’s Jews feared a Labour government because of his failure to tackle the party’s anti-Semitism crisis.

Brushing aside his party’s troubles and today’s poor weather forecast, he said: ‘I am looking forward to sunshine on Friday.’

Speaking on a campaign stop in Middlesbrough, Mr Corbyn insisted he will win the election ‘no problem at all’.

At a final rally in London last night, the Opposition leader pitched himself as an outsider, telling activists: ‘Tomorrow you can shock the Establishment, by voting for hope.’

Pro-Corbyn group Momentum said it was mobilising up to 30,000 supporters to knock on doors up and down the country to get people out to vote.

And Labour said it had won the social media battle – with millions more people watching the campaign videos of Mr Corbyn than those of Mr Johnson.

Can you take a selfie in a voting booth? When do polls close? And when will the first seats be declared? Your guide to polling day… and the nail-biting results night to follow

After an exhausting seven-week campaign, Britain goes to the polls today in its first December general election since 1923. 

Polling stations are open from 7am until 10pm, when an exit poll will give the first indication of the results. Votes will then be counted overnight. 

Most opinion polls predict a Conservative majority, but there are signs that the race has narrowed in the final weeks of the campaign. 

YouGov’s final polling analysis, which correctly predicted a hung parliament in 2017, projects a Tory majority but experts warn that a hung parliament is still possible. 

The national picture should become clear in the early hours of Friday morning. For those with the energy to stay up, here is a guide to how the 2019 general election will play out. 

Boris Johnson in London on the last day of the campaign

Jeremy Corbyn at a rally at Hoxton Docks in London last night

Head to head: Boris Johnson (left) and Jeremy Corbyn (right) give their closing pitches of the campaign at separate London rallies last night, as Britain goes to the polls today in its first December election since 1923 

How they stand: This diagram shows how many MPs each party had when Parliament was dissolved last month. Boris Johnson is hoping to turn his minority government into a majority in order to pass his Brexit deal

How they stand: This diagram shows how many MPs each party had when Parliament was dissolved last month. Boris Johnson is hoping to turn his minority government into a majority in order to pass his Brexit deal 

Swingometer: The Tories would need only a small swing from the 2017 election to reach enough seats for an overall majority - but a two per cent swing to Labour could make them the largest party

Swingometer: The Tories would need only a small swing from the 2017 election to reach enough seats for an overall majority – but a two per cent swing to Labour could make them the largest party 

7am – POLLS OPEN

Polling stations open across the UK at 7am and remain open until 10pm. 

The Electoral Commission says any eligible electors who are queuing at the polling station at 10pm must be allowed to vote.

If you live in England, Wales or Scotland you do not need to bring any identification to vote.  However, you will need to show photo ID to vote in Northern Ireland. 

You do not have to take your poll card with you, but the Electoral Commission advises if you have it with you it can help speed up the process.  

Broadcasters are not allowed to publish the results of any opinion polls while people are voting. 

In recent elections, voters have used the relative quiet to share pictures of their dogs at polling stations. You can send yours to MailOnline by emailing pictures@mailonline.co.uk

Taking photos, including selfies, inside the polling station is not allowed as it puts the secrecy of voting at risk. The Electoral Commission says you are welcome to take photos outside the polling station.

Directions: UK polling stations will be open from 7am until 10pm, when an exit poll will give the first indication of the results

Directions: UK polling stations will be open from 7am until 10pm, when an exit poll will give the first indication of the results 

10pm – EXIT POLL

Polls close, and the BBC, ITV and Sky will reveal the results of their combined exit poll.

The exit poll is different from other opinion polls because instead of asking people how they intend to vote, it asks people how they actually voted. 

It has a good track record of forecasting the result in recent elections. In 2017, the exit poll predicted the Tories would end up with 314 seats, just three short of the 317 the party actually won.  

However, it is still only a survey and could prove to be incorrect. In 1992, the exit poll forecast a hung parliament, but John Major’s Conservatives went on to win a majority of 21.  

Exit poll: When polling stations close at 10pm, broadcasters including Sky News (above) will reveal the results of an exit poll which will give the first indications about the results

Exit poll: When polling stations close at 10pm, broadcasters including Sky News (above) will reveal the results of an exit poll which will give the first indications about the results 

11pm – FIRST RESULTS

Two constituencies in the North East of England – Houghton and Sunderland South, and Newcastle-upon-Tyne Central – will race to be the first to declare. 

Both results are expected around 11pm and both are safe Labour seats. Bridget Phillipson has a majority of 12,341 in Houghton and Sunderland South. 

However, any rise or fall in Labour’s majority could be an early indication of how Jeremy Corbyn’s party will fare nationally. 

In 2016, Sunderland’s strong vote for Brexit – and Newcastle’s marginal Remain vote – was an early indication that the Leave campaign was outperforming expectations. 

Race toe be first: Election staff count ballot papers for the General Election at Silksworth Community Centre in Sunderland. Two early seats in the North East will be held by Labour but could give an indication of swing to or from the Conservatives

Race toe be first: Election staff count ballot papers for the General Election at Silksworth Community Centre in Sunderland. Two early seats in the North East will be held by Labour but could give an indication of swing to or from the Conservatives 

12pm – MORE LABOUR STRONGHOLDS

Four more safe Labour seats are likely to have declared by midnight, all in the North East of England. 

Again, look out for any evidence of a change in Labour’s vote share and a possible swing to the Conservatives. 

1am – WORKINGTON MAN 

Workington Man’ was said to be a key figure in this campaign – the sort of northern Brexiteer who might leave Labour for the Tories. 

However, the Conservatives have to overturn a sizeable majority (3,925) to win the first key marginal of the night. YouGov’s final polling model showed Labour on course to hold it. 

If Mr Johnson’s party takes the seat, he might be on course for a comfortable majority in the new Parliament. If Labour holds, the overall result could be narrower. 

North Down should be the first result of the night from Northern Ireland – a seat formerly held by the Independent MP Sylvia Hermon, and being targeted at this election by the DUP, the Ulster Unionists and the Alliance. 

The home of Workington Man: The Conservatives have to overturn a sizeable majority (3,925) to win the first key marginal of the night. YouGov's final polling model showed Labour on course to hold it

The home of Workington Man: The Conservatives have to overturn a sizeable majority (3,925) to win the first key marginal of the night. YouGov’s final polling model showed Labour on course to hold it

How will the election be shown on TV?  

BBC coverage will be led by Huw Edwards. He will be joined by Reeta Chakrabarti, Andrew Neil, Tina Daheley, while Jeremy Vine will take his place at the swingometer.

The 2019 election programme team will also  include political editor Laura Kuenssberg, Europe editor Katya Adler, economics editor Faisal Islam, and media editor Amol Rajan, alongside polling expert Professor Sir John Curtice.

Across the country the broadcaster will also have BBC Breakfast’s Naga Munchetty, Andrew Marr, Martha Kearney, Nick Robinson and Lucy Manning, plus Sarah Smith and Kirsty Wark broadcasting live from Scotland.

Sophie Raworth will analyse the results as they come in on a giant constituency map of the UK.

Sky pulled the upset of the election broadcast operation when it announced that former Speaker John Bercow would form part of its team.

Mr Bercow only stepped down from the role at the end of October, shortly before the election was called. 

He will join veteran anchor Dermot Murnaghan, with added input from political editor Beth Rigby, deputy political editor Sam Coates and economics editor Ed Conway.

Channel 4 is hosting a live eight-hour Alternative Election Night.

Coverage will be hosted by its veteran presenter Krishnan Guru-Murthy and comedian Katherine Ryan along with reality television star and radio DJ Rylan Clark-Neal, who will be ‘sense-checking results with a specially invited studio audience’.

Clare Balding will have the results as they happen, political comic Matt Forde will run an ‘alternative news desk’ and Judge Rinder will be out and about at votes.

The broadcaster said they would be joined by ‘an eclectic mix of the country’s biggest political figures’, including ex-home secretary Amber Rudd and former Labour deputy leader Tom Watson, plus comedians including Sophie Willan and Tez Ilyas.

ITV will welcome back former financial opponents George Osborne and Ed Balls, after they sparred well in 2017. They will be joined by former Scottish Tory leader Ruth Davidson, with Tom Bradby anchoring.

Also appearing will be Mr Johnson’s brother Jo Johnson, who stepped down as an MP at the election, Momentum chief Jon Lansman, Leave leader and ex-Labour MP Gisela Stewart, and former Labour home secretary Alan Johnson.  

1.30am – KEY MARGINALS

There has been much talk of the Tories breaching the ‘red wall’ of Labour support in the North, thanks in part to Brexit. If the Conservatives overturn Labour’s majority of 3,280 in Darlington, it’s a very good night for them. 

A Tory victory in Nuneaton was an early sign of David Cameron’s election success in 2015. The Tories are hopeful of taking votes off Labour in the West Midlands. If Marcus Jones extends his 4,739 majority, it will show they have succeeded. 

2am – RESULTS PICKING UP 

By 2am, results will start to pick up. The first results will come from Scottish seats being defended by the SNP, such as Dunbartonshire West, and Lanark and Hamilton East

Results to look out for include:  

Battersea – Marsha de Cordova (Lab) – majority 2,416

One of the first indications of how the parties are faring in the capital. Labour snatched it last time – and it will hope to increase its vote in this Remain seat.

Putney – former seat of Justine Greening (Con) – majority 1,554

Another south London seat – this one vacated by Justine Greening who lost the Tory whip in September – is one of Labour’s key hopes. Again, it is a Remain seat.

Hartlepool – Mike Hill (Lab) – majority 7,650

One of the first seats where the Brexit Party could have a real impact. The Tories are hopeful of overturning Labour’s majority, but this could be in peril if too many back Nigel Farage’s party.

West Bromwich East – former seat of Tom Watson (Lab) – majority 7,713

Before he quit as Labour’s deputy leader and stepped down as an MP last month, Mr Watson had a healthy majority and if the Tories take it it’s a very good night for them. However, YouGov’s final MRP projections showed Labour on course to hold the seat. 

Wrexham – former seat of Ian Lucas (Lab) – majority 1,832

A crucial marginal in North Wales. The Conservatives have never won here – but it is definitely within the party’s grasp.

2.30am – KEY SCOTTISH MARGINAL

Angus – Kirstene Hair (Con) – majority 2,645 

The first big Tory-SNP fight of the night. The seat is expected to fall to the nationalists, but if the Tories hang on it’s a good night for them. If they lose heavily, it could herald a near wipeout north of the border. 

3am – BIG NAMES ON THE BALLOT

Constituency results will be flooding in by now. Several big names will find out around 3am if they will be sitting in the new parliament. 

Jeremy Corbyn’s result will be declared in Islington North. He will win easily, but the Labour leader will be expected to address the emerging national picture.  

Some of the key seats include:

Esher and Walton – Dominic Raab (Con) – majority 23,298

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab is under threat in this Surrey seat. He has a mammoth majority, but the constituency voted Remain and the Liberal Democrats are talking up their chances.

Chingford and Woodford Green – Iain Duncan Smith (Con) – majority 2,438

Another Tory big beast at risk – former leader Iain Duncan Smith. He has a majority of just 2,500 and Labour are pushing him hard.

The seat will also be an indication of Labour’s overall strength in London. The party performed exceptionally well in the capital in 2017, but the Lib Dems won London in the European elections in May.  

At risk: Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith is facing a strong challenge from Labour in his constituency of Chingford and Woodford Green. The seat will also be an indication of Labour's overall strength in London

At risk: Former Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith is facing a strong challenge from Labour in his constituency of Chingford and Woodford Green. The seat will also be an indication of Labour’s overall strength in London

Final push: Jeremy Corbyn in London yesterday on the final day of the general election campaign. He will win easily in his North London constituency but will be expected to address the emerging national picture

Final push: Jeremy Corbyn in London yesterday on the final day of the general election campaign. He will win easily in his North London constituency but will be expected to address the emerging national picture 

Cities of London and Westminster – former seat of Mark Field (Con) – majority 3,148

Former Labour and Change UK MP Chuka Umunna is standing here for the Liberal Democrats, who were a distant third last time. 

East Dunbartonshire – Jo Swinson (Lib Dem) – majority 5,339

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson could be under threat here if the SNP has a very good night. The nationalists won the seat in 2015, but Ms Swinson took it back in 2017.  

Ms Swinson has seen the Lib Dems’ poll rating decline since the election was called, with signs that Remainers are returning to Labour.

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson (pictured) could be under threat in East Dunbartonshire if the SNP has a very good night. The nationalists won the seat in 2015, but Ms Swinson took it back in 2017

Lib Dem leader Jo Swinson (pictured) could be under threat in East Dunbartonshire if the SNP has a very good night. The nationalists won the seat in 2015, but Ms Swinson took it back in 2017

Great Grimsby – Melanie Onn (Lab) – majority 2,565

Boris Johnson has been targeting this heavily Leave-voting Labour seat in North East Lincolnshire. Labour has held the seat without interruption since Winston Churchill’s defeat in the 1945 election. 

Beaconsfield – Dominic Grieve (Con) – majority 24,543 

Ex-Attorney General Dominic Grieve won by a huge majority last time – but now the arch-Remainer is standing against the Tories as an independent. It will be hard for him to hang on.

Independent candidate: Ex-Attorney General Dominic Grieve (pictured on the campaign trail) won by a huge majority last time – but now the arch-Remainer is standing against the Tories as an independent in Beaconsfield

Independent candidate: Ex-Attorney General Dominic Grieve (pictured on the campaign trail) won by a huge majority last time – but now the arch-Remainer is standing against the Tories as an independent in Beaconsfield 

Bishop Auckland – Helen Goodman (Lab) – majority 502  

This is exactly the sort of Leave-voting northern seat the Tories need to take if they are to have any chance of getting a majority. Labour have held the seat since 1935. 

Sheffield Hallam – former seat of Jared O’Mara (Lab) – majority 2,125

The Lib Dems will want to retake Nick Clegg’s former seat of Sheffield Hallam from Labour. Jared O’Mara won the seat in 2017 but was suspended from the party over claims he made misogynistic and homophobic comments. 

Sedgefield – Phil Wilson (Lab) – majority 6,059

Taking Tony Blair’s former seat would be a symbolic victory for the Tories and a sign of Labour’s decline since it won three elections in a row in 1997, 2001 and 2005.  

3.30am – CONSERVATIVE BELLWETHERS

Totnes – Sarah Wollaston (previously Con) – majority 13,477

The South West is traditionally a Lib Dem heartland but the 2015 election changed all that. Tory defector Sarah Wollaston is standing for the Lib Dems in her old seat.

Hastings and Rye – former seat of Amber Rudd (Con) – majority 346

Miss Rudd was almost toppled here in 2017, but she quit the Cabinet and surrendered the party whip in the autumn, and is not standing at this win it this time, it will indicate a bad night for Mr Johnson.  

4am – HIGH-PROFILE MARGINALS

Over half of the results will be in, and the overall trend of the night should be clear. Labour targets such as Harrow East, Loughborough and Milton Keynes South will declare, along with Lib Dem targets like St Albans and Cheltenham

The SNP will hope to hold Fife North East and with a larger margin than they managed in 2017, when they had a majority of just two.

Seats to watch include:

Wakefield – Mary Creagh (Lab) – majority 2,176

The Conservatives are very confident of snatching Miss Creagh’s marginal seat in West Yorkshire – another pro-Leave constituency which feels left behind by Labour.

Canterbury – Rosie Duffield (Lab) – majority 187

Rosie Duffield became the first ever Labour MP for Canterbury in 2017. She has a tiny majority – but tactical voting could see her hang on.

The initial Lib Dem nominee, Tim Walker, stood down in the hope of helping Labour, but Jo Swinson’s party has fielded another candidate.  

Marginal seat: Labour's Emily Thornberry and Rosie Duffield, who won Canterbury for the party in 2017, campaign in the seat on December 1. Labour has a tiny majority but tactical voting could see them hang on

Marginal seat: Labour’s Emily Thornberry and Rosie Duffield, who won Canterbury for the party in 2017, campaign in the seat on December 1. Labour has a tiny majority but tactical voting could see them hang on 

Kensington – Emma Dent Coad (Lab) – majority 20  

Labour took this well-heeled seat on a tiny majority in 2017 just days before the Grenfell fire. On a good night the Tories will take it back, but it could be a close three-way race with the Lib Dems. 

In 2017 the result needed several recounts and wasn’t confirmed until nearly 24 hours after polls closed. 

Uxbridge and South Ruislip – Boris Johnson (Con) – majority 5,034

Boris Johnson will give his first reaction to the election night drama when the results are declared in his West London constituency. 

The PM only has a small majority and Labour has been fighting this one hard in the hope of claiming a remarkable scalp. If its candidate, Ali Milani, manages to unseat him here, it would be a truly historic night for Labour.

By 5am Boris Johnson should know whether he's safely back in Uxbridge and South Ruislip, where he won only a slim majority over Labour in 2017

By 5am Boris Johnson should know whether he’s safely back in Uxbridge and South Ruislip, where he won only a slim majority over Labour in 2017

5am – MORE LABOUR SEATS AT RISK  

By 5am, Anna Soubry should have discovered whether she’s been able to hold Broxtowe for the Change party. Labour seats at risk include:

Bolsover – Dennis Skinner (Lab) – majority 5,288 

Could it finally be the end for the Beast of Bolsover, Dennis Skinner? His seat is heavily pro-Brexit, and the Conservatives have poured resources into fighting it.

Ashfield – former seat of Gloria de Piero (Lab) – majority 441

Another Labour seat which is on the brink of a historic switch. Created in 1955, it has been held by Labour at every general election since. 

Former GMTV star Gloria de Piero narrowly won this pro-Brexit seat in Nottinghamshire last time. It will be hard for her successor to hang on. 

6am – FINAL TRICKLE OF RESULTS

By now, results will have slowed to a trickle. London could deliver some late upsets, such as:

Chipping Barnet – Theresa Villiers (Con) – majority 353

Environment Secretary Theresa Villiers is under threat here. She only just clung on in 2017 with a wafer-thin majority over Labour.

Finchley and Golders Green – Mike Freer (Con) – majority 1,657

Luciana Berger, the Labour MP forced out of the party over anti-Semitism, is standing in this heavily Jewish seat for the Lib Dems. But the Tories are confident of holding on.

Richmond Park – Zac Goldsmith (Con) – majority 45

Tory Zac Goldsmith won this seat in 2017 by a handful of votes. He’s unlikely to do so this time – making it a  valuable Lib Dem gain in the capital.

Vulnerable: Tory Zac Goldsmith (pictured) won his Richmond Park seat in 2017 by a handful of votes. He’s unlikely to do so this time – making it a valuable Lib Dem gain in the capital

Vulnerable: Tory Zac Goldsmith (pictured) won his Richmond Park seat in 2017 by a handful of votes. He’s unlikely to do so this time – making it a valuable Lib Dem gain in the capital

7am – THE FALLOUT BEGINS

The last handful of results will come in later on Friday morning. Caroline Lucas will discover if she has been re-elected as the Green MP for Brighton Pavilion and there could be late Lib Dem gains in the South West. 

Recounts could delay some of the declarations from earlier, but every seat is due to begin counting overnight so there is a good chance all 650 results will be in by mid-morning.

With the national picture now decided, the winning party leader will go to see the Queen and begin the task of forming a new government.   

In a hung parliament, pro-Remain MPs could try to force another extension of Brexit beyond the current Article 50 deadline. Jeremy Corbyn could then attempt to form a government with the help of the SNP. 

The prize: Either Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn will be speaking in front of 10 Downing Street's famous black door (pictured) after the first December general election since 1923

The prize: Either Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn will be speaking in front of 10 Downing Street’s famous black door (pictured) after the first December general election since 1923 

Hoping to WINALOT of votes! Britain’s dogs are out in force as their owners visit polling stations across the UK to make crucial call on the nation’s future

As millions of voters brave the cold and wet weather this morning to line up outside schools and community centres to vote in the election, hundreds have shared adorable photos of their dogs excitedly waiting for them to exercise their democratic right.

One cockerpoo puppy, Reggie, was seen waiting patiently outside a polling station in Chester-le-Street, County Durham this morning as his owner exercised their right to vote.

Leon Kazakos shared a picture of his lovely but camera-shy Labrador Loki, saying ‘Loki can’t bear to look at the camera at this hour’. 

Taking our furry friends to the polling station has become something on a tradition in recent years, with hundreds of voters posting dog selfies on social media under the hashtag #dogsatpollingstations.

Boris Johnson was spotted walking his and girlfriend Carrie Symonds’ puppy Dilyn to a polling station at Central Methodist Hall as the first of the party leaders to cast his vote, rather than in his Uxbridge constituency – a highly unusual move because outgoing prime ministers traditionally vote where they are standing as candidates.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan was also out with his dog Luna urging people to use their vote.

Polling stations are open today from 7am until 10pm, you don’t need your polling card to vote, but you might need to wrap your dog up as queues have already started to form at stations up and down the country. 

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A voter leaves their polling station at a Church in Brighton with their dog Lilly after casting their vote in Britain's first December general election since 1923. Members of the public and their dogs were out in force earlier today

A voter leaves their polling station at a Church in Brighton with their dog Lilly after casting their vote in Britain’s first December general election since 1923. Members of the public and their dogs were out in force earlier today

It's polling day and all the dogs have come out to play! These cute dogs were pictured being tied up outside a polling station

It’s polling day and all the dogs have come out to play! These cute dogs were pictured being tied up outside a polling station 

Reggie the cockerpoo puppy waits patiently in the dark outside a polling station in Chester-le-Street, County Durham this morning as the cute pooch waited for its owner

Reggie the cockerpoo puppy waits patiently in the dark outside a polling station in Chester-le-Street, County Durham this morning as the cute pooch waited for its owner 

This gorgeous dog was seen outside a polling station in Southampton this morning as many headed out to vote in the general election

This gorgeous dog was seen outside a polling station in Southampton this morning as many headed out to vote in the general election 

Penelope (pictured above) was also pictured outside a polling station this morning as her owner Leticia snapped this cute photo of her

Penelope (pictured above) was also pictured outside a polling station this morning as her owner Leticia snapped this cute photo of her

Strike a pose! One man posted this picture of himself and his cute dog outside the polling station and said: 'gone early gone hard'

Strike a pose! One man posted this picture of himself and his cute dog outside the polling station and said: ‘gone early gone hard’

Many dog owners took to social media this morning to share snaps of their beloved pets getting involved in what has been branded the Brexmas election.  

While you’re not allowed to take photos inside polling stations, you are allowed to take them outside, and many dog owners took the opportunity to snap their pooches posing today. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson also joined in with the trend this morning and was pictured with Dilyn the dog at Methodist Central Hall, after casting his vote. 

He seemed in high spirits and waved to the cameras as the cute little pooch looked as though he wanted to get out of the cold. 

Mr Johnson is the first party leader to cast his vote this morning as the UK heads to the polls in the most crucial election in a generation. 

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn voted just after 9am today in his Islington North constituency with the result in the first December general election since 1923 said to be on a knife-edge. 

This is while London Mayor Sadiq Khan was also pictured out and about this morning with his dog Luna, as he also took to social media to urge people to vote. 

Prime Minister Boris Johnson with Dilyn the dog at Methodist Central Hall to cast his vote in the 2019 General Election

Prime Minister Boris Johnson with Dilyn the dog at Methodist Central Hall to cast his vote in the 2019 General Election

London Mayor Sadiq Khan was also out and about today and took his dog Luna to the polls, urging people to vote

London Mayor Sadiq Khan was also out and about today and took his dog Luna to the polls, urging people to vote 

One Twitter user called Leon posted this snap of his dog Loki and said the dog was turned away as it 'couldn't bear to look at the camera at this hour'

One Twitter user called Leon posted this snap of his dog Loki and said the dog was turned away as it ‘couldn’t bear to look at the camera at this hour’

Another Twitter user Leanne Forshaw Jones posted this cute snap of her French Bulldog and said the most important job of the day was done

Another Twitter user Leanne Forshaw Jones posted this cute snap of her French Bulldog and said the most important job of the day was done

Millie and Charli (pictured above) heading off to vote North East Fife earlier this morning, both wearing little flags

Millie and Charli (pictured above) heading off to vote North East Fife earlier this morning, both wearing little flags 

Millions of voters face inclement weather with torrential rain and ice predicted across vast swathes of the country before the polls close at 10pm. 

An exit poll will give the first indication of the results and votes will then be counted overnight with the first results expected by 11pm and a clearer picture of who will be the next Prime Minister between 2am and 4am tomorrow.

A major YouGov poll on Tuesday predicted a 28-seat Tory majority – the largest since 1987 – but pollsters said the situation was so volatile that Britain could face another hung parliament. 

A dog waits for its owner to vote in the General Election 2019 outside a polling station in Reading. The dog was looking through the window to try and see its owner

A dog waits for its owner to vote in the General Election 2019 outside a polling station in Reading. The dog was looking through the window to try and see its owner 

Lily the Border Collie was out and about this morning as her owner Simon took her to the polling station in Buxton today

Lily the Border Collie was out and about this morning as her owner Simon took her to the polling station in Buxton today

A voter leaves with their dog after casting their vote at a polling station in Church in Brighton. The voter had made sure to put a little coat on the dog to keep it warm

A voter leaves with their dog after casting their vote at a polling station in Church in Brighton. The voter had made sure to put a little coat on the dog to keep it warm 

Barney the dog wasn't very impressed with election day and decided to urinate on a tree which had a polling station sign resting on it

Barney the dog wasn’t very impressed with election day and decided to urinate on a tree which had a polling station sign resting on it 

Kerry Sell posted this picture of her dog Ruby at 7am this morning as she was up and about early to cast her vote in the election

Kerry Sell posted this picture of her dog Ruby at 7am this morning as she was up and about early to cast her vote in the election

***Did you take your dog to a polling station today? Share you cute pooch pictures! Email pictures@mailonline.co.uk*** 

‘It’s on a knife-edge!’ Boris Johnson makes final plea to voters as he hammers home his Brexit vow  

By James Tapsfield, Political Editor and Jack Maidment, Deputy Political Editor for MailOnline 

Boris Johnson made his final plea for voters to help him ‘get Brexit done’ last night, hours before the ballot boxes open – and with polls showing the result is still on a knife edge. 

The PM said it is ‘up to you now’ after another frenetic day of campaigning in which he warned the risk of a Jeremy Corbyn government is still ‘very real’.

‘Now is the time for this amazing country to come together and remember what it is capable of doing,’ he told a glitzy rally at the Olympic Park in east London. 

Mr Johnson urged activists to ‘fan out’ and convince people to ‘give a miss’ to the hard-Left platform of Mr Corbyn, and instead elect a ‘sensible, moderate, dynamic One Nation government’.  

Boris Johnson told a glitzy rally at the Olympic Park in east London (pictured) that it is ‘up to you now’ after another frenetic day of campaigning in which he warned the risk of a Jeremy Corbyn government is still ‘very real’

‘We have 24 hours to break the deadlock,’ the PM warned Conservative party faithful who broke out into chants of ‘Boris! Boris!’.

He told voters: ‘This election is our chance to end the gridlock but the result is on a knife-edge. To every one of you who is fed up with the endless arguments and wants to move on, every one of you who wants us to respect the referendum result and deliver the change people voted for, every one of you who wants us to focus on a positive, united future, every one of you who worries about the chaos of a Corbyn-Sturgeon alliance in a hung parliament, my message is simple.

‘Give me a majority and I will finish what we started – what you instructed us to do – three and a half years ago. A great future is there within our grasp, but I need your vote.’

Mr Johnson’s rallying cry came as a series of polls showed the Tories holding on to their lead over Labour – but the gap is not big enough to guarantee an overall majority when the outcome is finally revealed on Friday morning

In a homely appeal to voters weary of Westminster’s long-running Brexit farce, Mr Johnson added: ‘Just imagine how wonderful it will be to settle down to a turkey dinner this Christmas with Brexit decided.

‘And how awful it would be if Corbyn and Sturgeon were in Downing Street advancing their plans for two more referendums.’

The rallying cry came as a series of polls showed the Tories holding on to their lead over Labour – but the gap is not big enough to guarantee an overall majority when the outcome is finally revealed on Friday morning.   

A survey by Opinium, conducted in the last two days of the campaign, put the Conservatives on 45 per cent, down three points over the past week. 

Labour was up two points to 33 per cent, figures which should be enough to guarantee Mr Johnson the functional government he craves.

However, one in ten voters are yet to make up their mind about how they will cast their vote. A Savanta ComRes survey found there was just five points between the main parties, with the gap shrinking by one.   

An Opinium survey gives the Tories a 12 point lead over Labour on the eve of the general election. Compared to the same poll last week, Labour are up two, the Conservatives are down one and the Lib Dems are also down one

Boris Johnson plants a Get Brexit Done sign in Benfleet, Essex, this evening as he was given a pre-election poll boost putting him on course to win a majority

Boris Johnson plants a Get Brexit Done sign in Benfleet, Essex, this evening as he was given a pre-election poll boost putting him on course to win a majority 

The Labour leader’s own rally last night was a much more low-key event in Hoxton Docks, where he told supporters to spread the message of ‘socialism, which is about hope’ to the country on Thursday.  

Mr Corbyn visited Glasgow and the north of England where he raised eyebrows by insisting Labour will win the election ‘no problem at all’.

How Britain’s pollsters are predicting the election 

YouGov: Tory 9-point lead Conservative 43, Labour 34, Lib Dems 12 

ICM: Cons 42, Lab 36, LD 12 

Opinium:  Cons 45, Lab 33, LD 12 

BMG: Cons 41, Lab 32, LD 14 

Panelbase: Cons 43, Lab 34, LD 11 

NCP: Cons 43, Lab 33, LD 12 

Qriously: Cons 43, Lab 30, LD 12

Savanta ComRes: Cons 41, Lab 36, LD 12 

Kantar: Cons 44, Lab 32, LD 13

Deltapoll: Cons 45, Lab 35, LD 10 

Pro-Corbyn group Momentum said it was mobilising up to 30,000 supporters to knock on doors up and down the country to get people out to vote.

Voters will face rain and gales in many parts of the country as they go to the polls in the first December election for almost a century. 

And Labour said it had won the social media battle – with millions more people watching campaign videos of Mr Corbyn than those of Mr Johnson. 

Mr Corbyn also fired a broadside at his Tory rival for ‘hiding in the fridge,’ saying that Labour is not afraid of being asked questions after a bizarre row engulfed the PM on the final day of the campaign. 

Mr Johnson’s day got off to an awkward start in West Yorkshire as he was ambushed by a reporter from ITV’s Good Morning Britain, prompting one of his aides to swear on live television. 

The PM refused to be interviewed and sought refuge in a fridge at the dairy he was visiting, sparking a wave of ridiculing memes on social media. 

The attempt to hijack the premier’s final day of the campaign left the Conservatives furious as sources insisted Mr Johnson had not been ‘hiding’.  

In his sabre-rattling speech to whip up party grassroots, Mr Johnson warned against electing 'a Hamas-backing IRA-supporting, anti-Semitism-condoning appeaser of the Kremlin' - Mr Corbyn

In his sabre-rattling speech to whip up party grassroots, Mr Johnson warned against electing ‘a Hamas-backing IRA-supporting, anti-Semitism-condoning appeaser of the Kremlin’ – Mr Corbyn 

Jeremy Corbyn's final rally was a much more low-key event at Hoxton Docks, where he told his party faithful to vote for 'socialism, which is about hope'

Jeremy Corbyn’s final rally was a much more low-key event at Hoxton Docks, where he told his party faithful to vote for ‘socialism, which is about hope’

Hammering the Brexit message: The PM has spent the final day of campaigning on a cross-country blitz of marginal seats, ending in Benfleet, Essex, where he used a sledgehammer to plant a Conservative sign in an activist's garden

Hammering the Brexit message: The PM has spent the final day of campaigning on a cross-country blitz of marginal seats, ending in Benfleet, Essex, where he used a sledgehammer to plant a Conservative sign in an activist’s garden

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured on a visit to Rother Valley this afternoon, has insisted Labour will win the election 'no problem at all'

Jeremy Corbyn, pictured on a visit to Rother Valley this afternoon, has insisted Labour will win the election ‘no problem at all’

Mr Johnson addressing party faithful in Stratford

Carrie Symonds hunkered down in Tory HQ in Westminster making last-minute calls to voters with her adopted dog Dilyn

While Mr Johnson was addressing party faithful in Stratford, his partner Carrie Symonds was hunkered down in Tory HQ in Westminster making last-minute calls to voters with her adopted dog Dilyn

The Opinium survey is likely to have buoyed Mr Johnson's spirits, pictured in Hengoed in south Wales this afternoon, as it suggests he is still on course to win a majority

The Opinium survey is likely to have buoyed Mr Johnson’s spirits, pictured in Hengoed in south Wales this afternoon, as it suggests he is still on course to win a majority 

Prediction: YouGov’s final polling model of the 2019 general election campaign projects that the Conservatives will win a majority of 28  

YouGov projects a small Conservative majority as the most likely outcome of the election, with this map showing the seats most likely to change hands

YouGov projects a small Conservative majority as the most likely outcome of the election, with this map showing the seats most likely to change hands 

Predicted vote share: The seat-by-seat model, which is based on thousands of interviews, puts the Tories on 43 per cent of the vote and Labour on 34 per cent

Boris Johnson’s final day of campaigning gets off to terrible start

Boris Johnson’s exasperated media minder swore on live TV as the PM refused to speak to Good Morning Britain before seeking refuge in a fridge as he started an early-morning milk round in Yorkshire.

Piers Morgan was visibly shocked and Susanna Reid had her head in her hands as Mr Johnson’s press secretary Robert Oxley declared ‘for f***’s sake’ and blocked the path of GMB’s roving reporter Jonathan Swain after he tried to ambush the premier.

The Tory leader, who was delivering milk in the marginal seat of Pudsey, West Yorkshire, yesterday morning, has repeatedly refused to appear on the ITV1 show. 

Mr Swain confronted Mr Johnson as he put milk crates in a van and said: ‘Morning Prime Minister, will you come on Good Morning Britain? Will you deliver on your promise to speak to Piers and Susanna?’

A tired-looking Mr Oxley loudly muttered: ‘For f***’s sake’ as his boss ignored the calls and wandered into a large walk-in chiller as Mr Morgan exclaimed: ‘He’s gone into the fridge’.

Following several minutes in the fridge, Mr Johnson later returned with a crate of orange juice and was asked if he would keep his promise to appear on the programme and replied: ‘Of course I will’ – but with the polls opening tomorrow he refused to say when. 

Tory sources said the PM was ‘categorically not hiding’ in the fridge and that he was actually being briefed by aides ahead of a separate and pre-agreed interview.  

The YouGov polling analysis which correctly predicted the hung parliament in 2017 predicted on Tuesday night that the Tories were on course to win a 28-seat majority.

However, the MRP model suggested the race had tightened in the final weeks of the campaign and pollsters warned that a hung parliament was still possible.  

The model predicts that the Conservatives will win 339 seats, with Jeremy Corbyn‘s party on 231 and the Liberal Democrats on 15.

The seat-by-seat model, which is based on thousands of interviews, puts the Tories on 43 per cent of the vote and Labour on 34 per cent. 

The forecast suggests the race has tightened since the previous MRP results on November 27 showed the Tories on course for a majority of 68.  

The Conservatives are predicted to gain 22 seats, including in Labour heartlands such as Ashfield, Bassetlaw and Tony Blair’s former seat of Sedgefield. 

A majority of 28 would be the Conservatives’ best result since Margaret Thatcher’s third election victory in 1987. 

However, there are signs that Labour is ‘patching the cracks’ in its so-called ‘red wall’ of seats across the North and the Midlands.  

Conservative strategists fear that an ugly row over the NHS on Monday has damaged their campaign and candidates say the election is now ‘on a knife edge’.  

The Tories’ shrinking lead means that Labour are now on course to retain Tory target seats such as Tom Watson’s former constituency of West Bromwich East. 

Labour are also favoured to win Workington, home of the ‘Workington Man’ target voter highlighted by a think tank.  

In addition, Labour are set to repeat their shock victories in Kensington and Canterbury, the poll suggests. 

Two senior Tories – Dominic Raab and Iain Duncan Smith – face close races in their constituencies. Mr Raab leads the Lib Dems by only two points in his Surrey constituency, according to the model.   

 

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