The local branch of the UK Independence Party (UKIP) has called for a by-election to fill a vacant seat on Bradley Stoke Town Council.
The vacancy, in the Primrose Bridge parish ward, arose in February when Keir Gravil (Conservative) resigned because he is going to work abroad.
Local UKIP councillor Ben Walker, buoyed by the good showing of his party’s candidate in the Eastleigh parliamentary by-election at the end of February, has told The Journal that local UKIP supporters are responsible for forcing the local by-election, despite him previously expressing concern about the cost implications for the town council.
On 1st March, Cllr Walker tweeted:
“On the back of #Eastleigh, can #UKIP go step further in Bradley Stoke & win a Town Council seat following 2nd #Tory resignation in 6 months!”
The staging of a town council by-election in the Meadowbank parish ward last September cost local taxpayers £4,437. The turnout for that poll, called after the resignation of Barry Mitchell (Conservative), was just 20.8% (508 voters). In a three-way contest, the Conservative candidate Paul Hardwick comfortably defeated Caroline Sullivan (UKIP) and Robin Horsfall (Labour).
The town council is currently formed of 12 Conservative members and three from UKIP.
The three UKIP councillors, Ben Walker, Ed Rose and Kim Harris, were all elected as Conservatives at the May 2011 election but chose to defect last year.
Nominations for the by-election close at noon on Friday (5th April). Assuming it is contested, the poll will take place on Thursday 2nd May.
The Primrose Bridge parish ward covers an area between central and north Bradley Stoke and includes roads such as Dewfalls Drive, Wheatfield Drive, Saxon Way, Winsbury Way, Oaktree Crescent, Campion Drive and Ellicks Close.
Do you live in the Primrose Bridge parish ward? Check out the interactive map of parish ward boundaries on The Journal’s Contact your Councillor page.
Last 5 posts in Bradley Stoke Town Council
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- Light pollution issue leads council to restrict opening hours of new car park - 4th February 2020
- Work set to start soon on Brook Way car park - 6th October 2019
- Petty party politics return to town council at AGM - 25th June 2019
- Meet the new mayor: Councillor Tom Aditya - 16th June 2019