Labour claims Tower Hamlets turnout has exceeded 2010 figure

By Rob Virtue on May 22, 2014 4:27 PM |

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Mayoral candidates in the Tower Hamlets election were working hard to earn afternoon votes in what is expected to be a close election.

And Labour sources claimed five hours before the closure of the polling booths, voter numbers had already passed the 25.6% figure four years ago when independent mayor Lutfur Rahman was elected.

Website Labourlist wrote: "I've just got wind that turnout has already far surpassed the number for 2010 - and there's still five and a half hours left of voting.

"What does this mean for Labour? Well, it's supposedly good news. The theory goes that Lutfur Rahman only has a certain level of support in the borough, and they all went out to vote for him last time."

The party's election co-ordinator Douglas Alexander was also heading to Tower Hamlets to support Labour candidate John Biggs in canvassing.

However, not all agreed with the Labour assessment. Ukip's Mark Webber reported on east London political blogger Ted Jeory's site turnout was "low so far".

On Twitter, both Mr Biggs and Mr Rahman were keeping their cards close to their chests in the last few hours of voting.

Local and European elections are also taking place. Polling stations shut at 10pm.

Meanwhile, the Met Police said it has officers present at every polling station in Tower Hamlets today.