Elections to local councils in England use the first-past-the-post (FPTP) system. This is a system that has been widely used in the UK, and most people will be familiar with it. Under this system, the person (or persons, depending on how many people you are electing) with the most votes is elected.
Under FPTP, voters get as many votes as there are positions to elect. In many local elections ‘first’ past the post is a misnomer, as, unlike in Westminster elections, there is sometimes more than one winner in each Ward/Division (the area in which you vote).
If there are three councillors to elect (as there are in many local council elections in England), you will have three votes. In this example, most parties will put up three candidates. You can put an ‘X’ next to each person you want to vote for, but you cannot give someone more than one vote. In this example, you have a maximum of three votes. They can all be for people from the same party, or from different parties. Once all these votes are counted, the three candidates (in this example) with the most votes are elected.
This is the voting system that has historically been used in the UK. As people are familiar with the system, it is easy for them to vote. It also produces a result that is easy to understand.