Candidate death causes election delay in Coker division
PEOPLE who live within the Coker division of Somerset County Council will have to wait an extra couple of weeks before they go to the polls.
The election was due to take place on May 2, but has had to be delayed until May 16 following the death of UK Independence Party candidate, Audrey Spencer, last week.
The vote has been put back to allow UKIP to put forward a replacement candidate for the Coker division.
PHOTO: UKIP candidate Audrey Spencer who died last week.
Notice of the new date will be published tomorrow (April 10) and new nominations can be made, although candidates already put forward do not need to be nominated for a second time.
Voters who have already received polling cards for May 2, will be sent new ones for May 16.
This delays affects people living in Barwick, Stoford, Chiselborough, East Chinnock, Closworth, East Coker, Hardington Mandeville, Haselbury Plucknett, Montacute, North Perrott, Norton-sub-Hamdon, Odcombe, West and Middle Chinnock and West Coker.
Mrs Spencer, a former member of Chard Town Council, was aged 80 and had been battling against cancer for the past few years.
Chairman of the UKIP Somerset County Committee, Dorothy Baker, said: “Audrey was certainly a busy lady who worked tirelessly for her community and for UKIP.
“She had fought a brave battle with cancer for three years or so, but although she had not been well recently her death came as a great shock to us all in Somerset.”
A spokesman for South Somerset District Council, which will oversee the election, said: “We can confirm that the candidate who was standing for the UK Independence Party at the forthcoming election for the Coker division has sadly passed away.
“The election in this division will now be cancelled and a new election will be held on May 16.
“Those parishoners affected by these changes will be issued a new poll card for the new election on May 16.”
Whatever happens Coker will have a new representative at County Hall following the election. Sitting representative, Cllr Cathy Bakewell, of the LibDems, is not standing at the election.
Candidates who have already been nominated for Coker division are as follows: Peter John Bysouth (Green); Marcus John Hudson Fysh (Conservative); Murray William Shepstone (Labour); Ian Stephen (LibDems).