'We all need to vote': Advance polls open in London, Ont.

It was seen as an encouraging sign, with lines formed as advance polls opened Thursday for the first of ten days.

About 30 people were standing in line to get into the advance polling station at 970 Oxford Street West in the riding London West, just minutes after it opened.

Janice Paine arrived shortly after the 10 a.m. opening time.

"A line-up of maybe 20 people outside and a number had gone in already,” she told CTV News.

When asked if she was surprised by that, Paine gave an emphatic, “Yes!”

Despite the wait, Paine said she's heartened by the fact so many people turned out.

"That's very impressive,” she said. “Yeah, we all need to vote."

There were other reasons for the line-up.

Only ten people were allowed in at a time. In additional to that, masks were required which forced some to make a quick retreat to their car for their face covering. Most seemed unfazed by process.

Pamela Root sees it as a testament to the value people put in elections.

“It just shows people really care about who's going run our province of Ontario,” she said.

Of the four ridings that fall – in whole or in part – within the City of London boundary, three went to NDP candidates in 2018; Peggy Satler in London West, Terrence Kernaghan in London North Centre and Teresa Armstrong in London Fanshawe.

The incumbent Progressive Conservative Candidate Jeff Yurek took Elgin-Middlesex-London as part of the Doug Ford sweep to power.

There will at least one new MPP for London after the votes are counted, with Yurek resigning just prior to the election.

Alistair Paine first cast a ballot in the federal election of 1968.

He says he’s voted in every federal and provincial election since. He says no matter who is in power, or who is favoured, it’s important to participate.

“Every vote counts because, even if you vote for somebody who doesn't get in, all the parties are looking at why that person voted for 'that' and they're trying to align it so they get a better chance of providing service to you,” Paine explained.

The advance polls are open until Saturday, May 28 with Election Day on Thursday, June 2.