Your event can take place any time between now and polling day.

It is always worth contacting the candidates as early as possible to begin discussing dates.

In particular, please note that due to the potential need to consider and monitor emergency Covid-19 legislation, the Scottish Parliament will be dissolved on the day before polling day (May 5th). This means that candidates who are a sitting MSP will be juggling campaigning with their parliamentary responsibilities (though these should be only related to Covid-19 issues; all other normal parliamentary activity should finish by the end of March).

Legislation has been passed to enable these elections to be postponed by up to six months if the pandemic necessitates. However, we recommend that you do not delay organising your hustings. It is better to have to postpone, than to wait and see and then find that you do not have sufficient time to organise properly.

Postal votes are usually sent to voters who have applied for them around two weeks before polling day. Many people complete their postal ballot as soon as it arrives, and more people than ever are expected to apply for postal votes this year, to avoid in-person voting.

For these reasons, our recommendation is that you aim to hold your event in the week beginning Monday 19 April, or earlier.

Ultimately the date will depend on a number of factors including the availability of candidates.

Experience from previous years shows that candidates often respond positively to invitations to in-person meetings held on Sunday evenings, although possibilities for in-person meetings will be limited this year.