By-election called after five parish councillors resign

Beckingham Parish Council, The Recreation Room, Beckingham G130521-4a

Beckingham Parish Council, The Recreation Room, Beckingham G130521-4a

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Beckingham cum Saundby Parish Council has called a by-election after five councillors resigned at a meeting last month.

The by-election, which was announced at the annual parish council meeting last week, is due to take place on Thursday 20th June.

The new chairman of the parish council Kevin Senior said the by-election was likely to cost the parish between £1,500 and £1,800.

“I hope that we get more than a few people standing, otherwise it is a cost for nothing,” he said.

But Coun Joan Sangar said it was not unusual for a council to have an election once every four years.

At the previous meeting in April, the then chairman Brian Stuart said that he was not prepared to continue in his position and offer his valuable voluntary time due to ‘continual subversive actions’ by one particular councillor.

He then resigned and left the meeting.

He was followed out of the door by vice chairman Jim Butcher and councillors Don Brown, Robert Markham and Richard Steele.

In his resignation letter, which was read out at last week’s meeting, Mr Stuart said that the last 11 months on the parish council had been ‘intolerable’.

“I joined to work for the community, but that has now become impossible in the current atmosphere,” he said.

“It has become difficult to conduct meetings and make progress. Back biting is bringing the council into disrepute.”

“The unpleasant atmosphere has grown over the last 11 months,” he added.

Richard Steele said he believed that the actions of one councillor had ‘resulted in the parish council being dysfunctional’.

“That is not what I joined for. I do not feel this council has a future,” he added.

Don Brown said he had served for 11 years as a councillor, but that during the last year ‘disruption had become the norm’.

Nomination papers for the five vacancies have to be registered with Bassetlaw District Council by noon today (Thursday), with the poll due to take place on Thursday 20th June.

Applications to vote by post must reach the Electoral Registration Officer at Queens Buildings, Potter Street, Worksop, Notts, S80 2AH by 5 pm on Wednesday 5th June.

Applications to vote by proxy should be submitted by 12th June.

For more information about the election and to make sure you are registered to vote, visit www.bassetlaw.gov.uk