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District Dispatch - 18 April 2023

It's hard to believe that we're nearly in May and almost two weeks away from this year's district and parish elections, which will take place on Thursday 4 May.

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I just want to remind you that you will need to show photographic ID to vote. Accepted forms of ID include a UK, European Economic Area (EEA) or Commonwealth passport; a UK or EEA drivers' licence; and, some concessionary travel passes, such as an older person's bus pass or an Oyster 60+ card. The full list can be found on the Electoral Commission website (opens new window). Voters will be able to use expired ID if they are still recognisable from the photo.

If you don't have any of the accepted forms of ID, the deadline to apply is next Tuesday 25 April at 5pm. You can apply on the government website (opens new window), or request a paper application form from our Elections Team by emailing or calling 01243 521010. Please remember to supply a hard copy photo or electronic photo with your application. The team will assist you if you are unable to supply your own photo or need help applying. 

If you need someone to vote on your behalf, there is still time to apply for a proxy vote. The deadline is 5pm on 25 April and you can download a form on the Electoral Commission website (opens new window). Once completed, you can either post it back to us or to email it to:

On the 4 May, polling stations will be open from 7am-10pm. If you're not sure where to vote, then you can find your local polling station (opens new window). For more information about the elections, go to our elections webpage.

I'm really proud of how everyone has come together to support the residents and businesses of Midhurst in the wake of the terrible fire at The Angel Inn hotel and neighbouring buildings last month. I would urge residents across the district to support the excellent array of local and independent Midhurst businesses by visiting, spending and shopping in the town if you are able to do so.

You can access periods of free parking in Midhurst at The Grange car park, where you can benefit from two hours free parking per day, or in the Post Office and North Street car parks, where you'll receive an hour free per day. Customers need to display a ticket or register the free of charge parking on MiPermit (even during the free period).

Residents and visitors travelling to Midhurst by bus can currently access single bus tickets for £2 on most routes in our area as part of the Government's bus cap scheme, which will run until 30 June. Please note that bus services in Midhurst are currently unable to serve Midhurst Bus Station, and so services 60, 91, 92 & 93 will now depart from a temporary bus stop at The Grange/Library Car Park. The traveline website (opens new window) shows customers whether a particular bus journey is part of the £2 fare scheme and also provides live updates on services.

A multi-agency recovery group, which includes Chichester District Council, West Sussex County Council, West Sussex Fire and Rescue, Midhurst Town Council and the South Downs National Park Authority, is working hard to support the town and its businesses, and are working to get A286 North Street reopened to vehicles as soon as possible. Updates are being issued regularly and you can find the very latest news on our social media sites or visit our latest news page

Finally, please remember that there will be a national test of the UK's new Emergency Alerts system on Sunday 23 April at 3pm. The message will appear on the home screens of people's devices, with vibration and a loud warning sound that will ring for about 10 seconds, even if the phone is set to silent. Find out more by watchingthe Cabinet Office's quick video (opens new window).

Best Wishes

Diane Shepherd

Chief Executive at Chichester District Council