Voter turnout slows in Cavan and Monaghan as close of polls approaches

Turnout across Cavan and Monaghan is reported to have slowed as the day has progressed.

An early surge across the country led many to think this could be a referendum with one of the highest turnouts.

After a higher than expected turnout early this morning, many expected the so called “teatime rush” to see many more making their way to the 119 polling stations are open across the two local counties.

Turnout in across Cavan and Monaghan is reported to be in the mid to high 50s, with only a half hour to close of polls.

Counting of ballots will get underway at 9 tomorrow morning in Cavan town.

We’ll have coverage of the local count tomorrow on Northern Sound, onair and online.

Almost 2,000 people were added to the supplemental register in the two counties in recent months, with 1,182 extra in Cavan and 907 in Monaghan.

These local people have been explaining why it’s so important to vote today:

The majority of Cavan and Monaghan’s votes will be counted in Cavan town, with west Cavan – which remains a part of the Sligo-Leitrim constituency until the next general election – being counted in Sligo.

An overall national result is expected by early afternoon.

We’re into the final hour voting in the abortion referendum.

Voting has been brisk across the day, although the rush has now eased.

Some turnout predictions are as high as 70% in urban areas in Wicklow, 60% in Athlone and parts of Kildare, and 68.2 percent in Kill.

There’s strong interest to see if the final turnout is higher than the same sex marriage referendum which reached 60% in 2015.

There was an initial strong rush this morning as people hit the ballot boxes in large numbers.

But that has slowed this evening.

Many areas have reported higher than usual turnout overall, with some eclipsing the figures seen during the marriage referendum.

There’s also reports of a higher than usual turnout among young people and those on the supplementary register.

Two exit polls will be released this evening by RTÉ and the Irish Times once polling has closed.

They’ll give the first real indication of which side has won this referendum.

Polling booths close at 10pm.