A SENIOR Conservative warned today that thousands of people may be unable to vote because of disruption caused by the Icelandic volcano eruption.

Shadow defence secretary Dr Liam Fox’s wife Jesme is stranded in Hong Kong and won’t be able to return to Britain until May 11 at the earliest – five days after polling day.

He said: "We know there is a question over whether armed forces ballots will be able to be flown home, but what about those who are registered abroad to vote and what about the UK citizens who may find themselves trapped at the time of the general election?

"We are talking potentially about 100,00 to 200,000 UK citizens. This is now potentially an electoral as well as a humanitarian problem."

Anyone on the electoral register has until 5pm on April 27 to apply for a proxy vote, which allows a friend or relative to go to the polling station and cast a ballot on their behalf.