DORSET residents will go to the polls today as they elect a police and crime commissioner and councillors at Dorset Council. 

Polling stations across the county will be open from 7am until 10pm on Thursday, May 2 ahead of the last local elections before a general election later this year. 

Although BCP Council’s local elections were held last year, residents in the Canford Cliffs ward (including Sandbanks) will go to the polls in a by-election, following the resignation of May Haines. 

Voters will need to show photo ID to be eligible to vote in person and by proxy in this election. 

For BCP and Dorset Council’s residents, PCC candidates include David Sidwick, David Stokes, Howard Legg and Marianne Storey. 

In the by-election, there is a choice between Jim Buchanan, Ray Sparrow, Johnny Tutton and Gavin Wright. 

A decision on the by-election is expected to be revealed early Friday morning, May 3. 

Meanwhile the PCC count will take place on Saturday, with the result expected to be announced in the afternoon.