Polling stations across Britain have been reporting a high tournout in the country’s national parliamentary election.
The uncertain outcome of the poll and the introduction of TV debates have helped boost interest in the contest.
Many opinion polls have predicted no clear winner emerging from the vote. Gordon Brown’s ruling Labour Party has seen its popularity wane in the wake of the economic crisis that has hit the the country.
But the centre-right Conservatives have failed to establish a commanding position under their party leader David Cameron, and they have seen their support whittled away by the centrist Lib Dems whose leader Nick Clegg put in a strong performance in the TV debates.
Under the first past the post electoral system much may depend on how the support for the different parties spreads regionally, and the final outcome may not be known until late on Friday.
There was drama on election day when the leader of the anti-EU UK Independence Party was injured in a plane crash. Nigel Farage was fortunate to survive the accident, which appears to have happened when a party banner became entangled in the plane’s engine.