My hour-by-hour guide to election night

For David Dimbleby, Tom Bradby, Andrew Neil and the gang (not to mention all the candidates) it’s the busiest night of the election cycle. They’ll be up, along with half the public, all night long observing the results as they come in. However, most of us won’t be joining them into the early hours, so I’ve put together an hour-by-hour guide of which results you should look out for and at which times.

I’ll also be tweeting (@GuideToPolitics) into the early hours, so please feel free to send me any thoughts of questions that you have.

At 10pm the polls shut and the exit poll is announced. Historically, this has given a very reliable indication of the actual result and it is considered more reliable than any polls carried out throughout the campaign.

The first constituencies will declare just before 11pm. They are all safe Labour seats, however, it will provide an interesting indication of how high or low turnout is and whether the Labour lead has increased or decreased compared to last election. Expect Jeremy Vine and his swingometer to start work.

Only a few seats will announce the results in the next hour or two and it should be a relatively quiet time if you are watching on TV. Then at 1am the first marginal and bellwether seats will declare. At this point it will begin to become clear which of the two main parties is having the better night.

At around 2am results are expected in Amber Rudd and Justine Greening’s constituencies. If the Home and Education Secretaries lost their seats (their constituencies are both marginal ones) Theresa May will likely be starting to worry.

Between 2.30 and 3am Corbyn’s Islington North constituency should declare. Although it’s a safe Labour seat it will be interesting to hear what the party leader has to say at this point in the night. Scottish constituencies will also begin to declare, and gaining a couple of seats from the SNP will indicate that things are going well for the Conservatives.

From 3:30am the seats that are being targeted by the Lib Dems in the south-east will begin announcing the results. Sir Vince Cable will be hoping to win in Twickenham.

Between 4 and 5am the results will start to come in thick and fast. The election’s eventual result should potentially be clear by now. Marginal constituencies to watch include Richmond Park where Zac Goldsmith is attempting to regain his seat from the Lib Dems, Copeland where Trudy Harrison will attempt to cling onto the seat she won in a by-election a couple of months ago and Sheffield Hallam where former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg looks vulnerable. Theresa May will also make a speech if she is re-elected in her safe Tory seat of Maidenhead.

At 5:30am we’ll expect to hear whether or not Green co-leader Caroline Lucas has held on at Brighton Pavilion and UKIP leader Paul Nuttall has won in Boston and Skegness

By 7am the overall result will definitely be clear. Around this time South Thanet will also declare, where UKIP have a chance of winning.

And by midday every seat should have declared.

So there it is, your guide to election night. If you have some time to pass after watching the exit poll, check out my thoughts on the Conservative and Labour campaigns and predictions for election night. Also, I’ll be tweeting for most of the night. Come and say hi!