Current vacancies and elections

Current vacancies

To request that an election be held to fill one of the above vacancies, please print, fill in and sign the below template and email this to the Returning Officer at elections@westsuffolk.gov.uk by the specified deadline.

Current elections

In response to the Covid-19 emergency, the UK government has passed the Local Government and Police and Crime Comissioner (Coronavirus) (Postponement of Elections and Referendums)  Regulations 2020 and the Coronavirus Act 2020 which postpones all polls until Thursday 6 May 2021. The date for any polls requested will therefore not be fixed by the Returning Officer until the public health situation has become clearer.

Police and Crime Commissioner elections

The Police and Crime Commissioner elections due to take place on Thursday 7 May 2020 have been postponed until May 2021 as part of the Government's response to tackling the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

Further information, including the revised date for the election to take place, will be published here in due course.

Casual vacancies

If a councillor leaves their seat during the course of their term, a casual vacancy will occur. This may happen because a councillor has resigned, passed away, become disqualified (or ceased to be qualified) or because of a failure to take up office.

The rules for casual vacancies are different depending on whether the seat is for a district or county council, or for a parish or town council, however, a notice of vacancy will be displayed to advertise the vacancy.

The list of current vacancies can be found above.

By-elections

If an election is called following a notice of vacancy being displayed, a by-election would be held. The date for the by-election will be set within required timescales and it would be advertised by the publication of a notice of election which marks the start of the election process.

Details of any by elections can be found above.

How to request an election

District and county councils

When a councillor's seat becomes vacant, a notice of vacancy will be displayed to advertise that vacancy.

The notice explains that an election can be called by a request, made in writing, to the council's proper officer by two electors from the authority’s area.

If an election is called, it must be held within 35 days of the notice. The exception to this is that if a vacancy occurs within six months of the date of the next scheduled elections, the vacancy is carried over to the next elections. The seat will remain vacant during that time and no by-election will be held.

Parish and town councils

The parish or town clerk will display a notice of vacancy in the parish area. The notice shall explain that an election can be called by a request, made in writing, to the district council's proper officer by 10 electors from the parish area, within 14 working days of the date of the notice.

If an election is called, it must be held within 60 days of the notice. If no request is received then the town/parish council may choose to appoint someone by co-option into the vacant seat.

The notice of vacancy must run its course before the town/parish council has the opportunity to co-opt a new councillor as this gives the electors of the parish a chance to call an election if they wish to.

If the vacancy occurs within six months of the date of the next scheduled elections for that council then no election will be held, and the seat may remain vacant until it is filled at the next elections, or the council may choose to appoint someone by co-option into the vacant seat.

Past election results 

For details of past election results visit our election results pages.