A General Election was called on the 14th November, three days after the Armistice, and this was to be the first election since the Representation of the People Act 1918 was passed, which enabled all men over the age of 21 to vote and all women over the age of 30 to vote.
Before this Act was passed, many poorer men were excluded from voting as they had not owned land or rented property of a certain value in their constituency.
On Saturday 14th December, the local polling station opened, and voting took place. This was the first election when the voting took place on a single day, but the result was not declared until 28th December. This delay was caused by the need for the votes of the men overseas on military service to be included for each constituency.
The electoral voters lists for this election are invaluable for local historians, especially those researching the men who served in the Great War. All the constituencies had to compile “Absent Voter” lists which name all the local men who were away, giving their full names, addresses, as well as the name of their regiment (or ship), and service number.
Sutton at Hone’s ward, which covered Sutton, Hawley, Clement Street and Button Street, had 966 voters in total and there were 197 absent voters. Oddly, Sutton was not in the same parliamentary constituency as Dartford, instead it was in the Chislehurst constituency.