A Councillor vacancy on Bradley Stoke Town Council has been announced on the Council’s noticeboards throughout the town. The vacancy is for a seat representing the Meadowbank parish ward, previously occupied by Caroline Charlton (Conservative).
Ms Charlton had been a member of the Council since May 2007 and served as the Council’s press spokesperson until earlier this year. She was also a member of the Finance & Leisure Committee and contributed to the drafting of the Council’s embryonic Business Plan.
The notice states that an election will only be held to fill the vacancy if a notice of request is made to the returning officer at South Gloucestershire Council by 1st September. The request must be signed by ten local electors.
Should no application for an election be made, the Council will fill the vacancy by “co-option”, a procedure in which members of the Town Council choose a replacement Councillor.
A number of residents, having heard of the vacancy “on the grapevine”, have contacted The Journal to express their surprise that it has not been announced on the BSTC website. Having checked the website, we too have been unable to find any trace of a formal announcement. The last entry in the website’s Latest News and Anouncements section is dated 1st July and concerns events at Bristol Zoo Gardens. Consequently, we are happy to publish a photograph of the Councillor vacancy notice (dated 11th August), which can be viewed by clicking on the above thumbnail image.
Asked if the local Lib Dems might be minded to force an election for the vacant seat, local party member Jon Williams told The Journal:
I think it would be fair to say that the Lib Dems have been concerned with the way that the Town Council has been run since the Conservatives took control and [we] will be putting forward a candidate to fight the vacany. The Lib Dems want to see Bradley Stoke residents representing the town and running the council for the benefit of local people.
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