This year marks only the second ever West Midlands mayoral election.
Conservative candidate Andy Street upset the odds in 2017 when he edged home by the tightest of margins - 50.4 per cent to Sion Simon's 49.6 per cent in the final round - to win an election many expected the Labour candidate to triumph in.
Unlike the current West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), the incumbent mayor is standing again in the 2021 election.
The voting system used in the mayoral election allows everyone to make two choices.
Called the supplementary vote, everyone can select a first and second preference. Should no candidate achieve 50 per cent of the vote after all votes are cast, then the bottom three will be eliminated and their second preference votes transferred to the remaining two candidates to decide the winner.
The winner will serve a three-year term (the election was due to take place last year but was postponed due to the pandemic), with the next vote in 2024.
West Midlands mayoral candidates
The five candidates in the running are:
Liam Byrne (Labour)
Steve Caudwell (Green Party)
Pete Durnell (Reform UK)
Andy Street (Conservative)
Jenny Wilkinson (Liberal Democrat)
Each candidate has also spoken to the Express & Star about their manifesto pledges.
A sixth candidate, Ashvir Sangha, withdrew from the race in April.
The 32-year-old entrepreneur was running as an independent and pledged to push for a "new style, new vision and new generation in local politics".