UNLESS one is a member of a political party or one of the counting staff, there is no way one can view democracy in action – i.e. the counting of votes in Pendle.
For years as a member of a party, as a candidate, agent, counting agent, I have attended counts in various parts of the country and have always been aware that for the public, there was an area designated for viewing from afar. But not, it seems, at the police commissioners count at Pendle Leisure Centre. As an active campaigner for a “none of them” vote, I could hardly expect any of the candidates or their parties to offer me a ticket and my application to the town hall drew a blank, so I went along to where I expected any public to be allowed. “Oh no, you cannot”, I was very politely informed. “No ticket, and you have to go to watch behind the glass doors.” How, why and when have we stopped having public viewing areas at election counts, which is never going to be a mass spectator event?
Knotts Lane, Colne