Upper Hunter Shire voters head to the polls in Federal Election 2019

DECISION DAY: There was a steady and quiet roll in of voters at Scone High School on Saturday, with many having already taken advantage of pre poll.
DECISION DAY: There was a steady and quiet roll in of voters at Scone High School on Saturday, with many having already taken advantage of pre poll.

WITH a record number of Upper Hunter Shire residents taking advantage of early voting this federal election, there has been a steady roll in at polling booths across the region today.

More than 40,000 people in the New England electorate voted at a pre-polling booth in the two weeks leading up to the election.

The figure equates to 36.6 per cent of the electorate - more than a third of eligible voters.

Nationals' Barnaby Joyce cast his vote earlier this afternoon at his home town booth of Woolbrook Public School, an Election Day tradition for the incumbent New England MP.

CASTING VOTE: New England MP Barnaby Joyce casts his vote at his home town booth at Woolbrook Public School.

CASTING VOTE: New England MP Barnaby Joyce casts his vote at his home town booth at Woolbrook Public School.

Meanwhile, the independent candidate who has emerged as Mr Joyce's main contender after throwing his hat in the ring for the first time, Adam Blakester, has cast his vote at a polling booth at Invergowrie in his home shire of Uralla.

DEMOCRACY IN ACTION: independent candidate for New England Adam Blakester casts his vote on Saturday at a polling booth in Invergowrie. Photo: Facebook/AdamBlakester

DEMOCRACY IN ACTION: independent candidate for New England Adam Blakester casts his vote on Saturday at a polling booth in Invergowrie. Photo: Facebook/AdamBlakester

The bookies have Mr Joyce, who holds the seat by 16.4 per cent, as the $1.01 favourite.

The polls close at 6pm and counting begins, so stay tuned as we bring you the results as they come in.

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