South Yorkshire Times, Saturday, June 20th, 1970
Polling Day Highlights in South Yorkshire
Its All Over Bar The Counting
Counting of the Dearne Valley Constituency votes, brought in from all districts after the polls closed at 10 o’clock last night, will start at Wombwell High School this morning (Friday) under the direction of Deputy Acting Returning Officer, Mr. F. Potter.
The result is expected to be announced at about 1.30 p.m. Immediately following the announcement from the balcony of the Town Hall overlooking High Street, details of the voting will be published on the Town Hall official notice board,
Election “fever” gripped both ends of the age spectrum in the Dearne Valley Constituency yesterday as children mobbed election cars in Denaby and coach parties from Mexborough began a pensioners’ outing with a trip to the polling station.
At lunchtime a poll approaching 90 per cent was being predicted in Mexborough’s Roman Terrace Ward.
Early in the day voting was slow at Conisbrough, but it was expected to quicken as the day progressed. At Denaby St. Alban’s a record poll was expected.
Mr. Edwin Wainwright, Labour Candidate, making last minute visits to the polling stations, told the “South Yorkshire Times”, “It has been an extraordinarily good campaign and I am expecting a very high percentage vote.”
He thought the good weather was on the side of the Labour Party has more of the Socialist electorate would walk to their polling stations in fine weather.
Mr Wainwright said he was expecting Denaby children to be out on the street campaigning for him. As the election cars toured the streets, children flocked round exhibiting their labour rosettes and sandwich boards.
Things were quite at Saint Andrew’s mission, Conisbrough, where voters were sent mainly to be middle age with only a few early young voters.”
In the first 6 ½ hours, 304 people had voted in the Roman Terrace Ward, Mexborough—seven of them registering their crosses in the first eight minutes.
The new voters were praised by Labour Party workers. “Quite a high number of teenage voters have been. They appear to have fully justified having been given a vote,” said one checker.
One teenage voter, Susan Stone, who was 18 in April, said, “My friends and I are not just voting for the sake of it. We have all been scouting around looking for as much information as possible to decide which party will be best. I am sure this will be general with young voters. They are interested.”
At Adwick Road School, Mexbrough, 100 old people registered their votes in the first hour.
Pensioners from the Lindsay Centre were setting off early for an outing to Southport. Making sure they would not miss out on the election, they first walked to the polling station,
At Swinton there seemed to be little early excitement, At Bridge Infants’ School the morning was very quiet, but election officials thought the rest of the day would bring much greater activity. Swinton Queen Street school had 145 voters up to 11 a.m., but with only about a dozen teenagers.
Among the highest relative polls was that at Park Road, Wath, which reported 500 during the morning. In the first two hours 115 votes rose to 442 by 11.30 a.m.
The station had been open only 15 minutes when a blind woman, accompanied by a welfare officer, cast her vote while a tripper’s coach waited outside.
“It’s been busier than County Council or local authority elections and there has been a majority of pensioners, said a party spokesman.
Despite a slow start, activity at Wombwell Polling booths accelerated rapidly about 10 a.m., and in the perfect whether there were signs of a heavy poll.
At King’s Road schools the first hour showed a voting rate of one a minute and from 9 AM onwards this increase greatly. First there was Mrs D Lacey, of Overdale Road, Wombwell, a Labour Party checker.
At about 10 a.m. a party of residents of Wombwell Grange, a West riding hostel for aged women, Wombwell, made a “mass-entry”, ten residents been the ages of 88 and 90 being accompanied by the matron. This group had walked from the Grange in Park Street to the polling booth. Five other aged people from that home, unable to make the journey on foot, arrived later by taxi. Only three residents of the Grange, the oldest being 94 years of age, failed to vote.
At Hough Lane polling station, the first there was Mr. Jack Timmins of Copeland Road. Wombwell, with Labour Court. James Goddard of Foley Avenue almost “on his heels”.
Labour Party candidate Mr. Edwin Wainwright and his wife Dorothy who had cast their votes well before 9 a.m., at this station.
The busiest Wombwell station in the first hour was at John Street School, where several people were waiting for the opening, The first cross was ” made by Mr. Alfred Robinson of Rose Grove, Wombwell, who is Secretary of the Young Socialists at ‘Wombwell
One potential voter was turned away from Queen Street School, Swinton, yesterday, because of ineligibility by 15 years! He was a three-years-old child who had received his voting papers from Wakefield. “I thought it was a joke at first until he showed the card to me,” said Coun. Michael Eagleton. His mother was with him, saying that it couldn’t be right — it has obviously been an administrative error, but I understand there are two young children still to arrive with cards,” he added.
A woman voter from Roman Terrace Ward was treated for abrasions at Mexborough Montagu Hospital after having fallen on her way to the polling station at Highwoods Infants School