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Local elections 2022: Boris Johnson and Keir Starmer hold their breath as they wait for crucial Red Wall results

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MILLIONS of Brits have been at the polls today casting their votes for the local elections – and it is set to be an absolute nail biter.

In England, a whopping 4,360 seats on 146 councils are up for grabs as well as a handful of mayoral elections.

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Boris Johnson was spotted heading off to cast his vote in Westminster with dog Dilyn this morning[/caption]

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Labour leader Keir Starmer and his wife Victoria Starmer leave a polling station on Thursday[/caption]

7 key local election battlegrounds

And astonishingly, more than 1,800 of those seats are in London where every seat in London’s 32 boroughs will be contested.

Meanwhile in Northern Ireland, voters will choose the make-up of the next Stormont assembly as they need to fill 90 seats.

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Polling predicts Sinn Fein – the nationalists who want a united Ireland and have historic links to the IRA – to win the most seats.

It would mean there could be a Sinn Fein first minister for the first time in history.

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POLLING DAY

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Voters go to polls across UK as Boris and Keir battle for key local seats

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ELECTION FEVER

7 key battlegrounds in today’s local elections as Boris & Keir face off

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But under peace-keeping power-sharing arrangements the leader of the second largest party – which will be a unionist – will be their deputy.

In Scotland, all 32 councils are being contested while 22 Welsh local authorities are also having their fate sealed at the ballot box.

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It is the first election in Wales where 16 and 17-year-olds have the right to vote – meaning 70,000 teenagers are eligible to go to the polling station,

In Scotland, over-16s can vote, but in England the minimum age is 18.

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But all eyes will be on crucial Red Wall seats as polls closed at 10pm – those Labour areas that turned Tory at the 2019 General Election.

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Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer were up early on Thursday to rally supporters to back their party at the ballot box.

And their armies of activists were out hammering on doors at the crack of dawn in a last-gasp heave to rake in every possible vote.

Tensions are running high between the pair as voters will cast their ballots in line with key issues impacting the country.

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Partygate, the cost of living crisis and the war in Ukraine are top issues Boris and Sir Keir have been battling over.

Key pinch points in the race will be in Sunderland where Tories hoping to deprive Labour of the majority its held since 1974.

Bolton is also set to be a nail-biting finish, with Labour hoping to turn the council from blue to red.

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Eagle-eyed critics will be honing their sights on Amber Valley, Derbyshire – a bellwether Boris and Sir Keir will be using as an indicator of the national picture.

Meanwhile Labour are hoping to cause historic upset in the traditional Tory stronghold of Westminster.

Boris Johnson made a last dash to Southampton on Wednesday to fend off a creeping threat from Labour.

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Sir Keir’s party are also eyeing up Conservative majority Dudley in the West Midlands for a possible colour change.

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Polls closed as 10pm but first results are are not expected to be until around 2am.

Result from Sunderland – the north east city who take pride in lodging their results first – are expected around this time.

A lady leaves a polling station on her bike in Cardiff
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Voters queue up outside a polling station in London
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Party tellers from the Greens and Labour have a natter outside a polling station in Norwich
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