Parish Council Elections

There are three ways that you can become a a councillor: standing for election, filling a vacant seat after an election, or filling a casual vacancy (where a vacancy becomes available between elections e.g. if  a councillor resigns). 

Local elections for Parish Councillors take place every 4 years. The most recent election for Haddenham Parish Councillors took place on 6 May 2021. The Council received 11 nominations for 11 vacancies, so all candidates were elected uncontested. 

For more information on Town and Parish Council elections, visit the Electoral Commission's website.

Councillor Vacancies

Haddenham Parish Council currently has a casual vacancy due to the resignation of Councillor Kuldip Rihal (Notice of a Casual Vacancy 23 February 2024).

What is a Casual Vacancy?

A casual vacancy occurs when a seat on a Town or Parish Council becomes vacant during the current term of the council.

Casual vacancies may come about for one of six reasons:

  1. Failure to accept office
  2. Resignation
  3. Death
  4. Ceasing to be qualified
  5. Becoming disqualified
  6. Failure to attend meetings

How is a Casual Vacancy filled?

A Council may fill the seat by co-opting another member unless a valid request for a by-election is made. A request for a by-election must be made to the Proper Officer of the relevant district or unitary council (Buckinghamshire Council) within 14 working days of the publication of the notice of vacancy by ten electors from within the Parish.

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Apply to be a Councillor!

If you're interested in applying to be a Councillor, please read the below information before contacting Sue Gilbert - Clerk to Haddenham Parish Council.

What does a Parish Councillor do?

Parish Councillors work together to serve the community.

They come from different backgrounds and bring a diverse range of skills.

Team work is important as no individual councillor can act in isolation.

Here are some of the things Haddenham Parish Councillors are currently involved with:

  • Attending Council and Committee meetings
  • Representing the Council at meetings of local organisations
  • Planning – commenting on planning applications, supporting the neighbourhood plan
  • Finance – budget setting, governance and accountability, risk assessment
  • Management of Parish Council owned facilities and open spaces.
  • Special projects – for example new community facilities, parking restrictions and speed monitoring.

You don’t need to bring any specific skills. Enthusiasm and a willingness to work as a team to support your community are all that is needed!

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How much time does it take?

Being a councillor requires commitment and hard work but the role can be done flexibly around employment, studying, caring, and other voluntary commitments.

The amount of time you spend on your duties as a councillor is largely up to you and will depend on the different roles and commitments each councillor takes up.

You will need to be available on Monday evenings to attend Parish Council and Committee meetings. The Parish Council has four standing committees, Facilities, Finance and General Purposes, Planning, and Climate Emergency as well as sub-committees for Personnel, Sporting Facilities, the Allotments and Community Orchard. Councillors are not not required to site on all committees and can choose those that interest them most. 

Meetings generally take place every third Monday. See the Parish Council meeting schedule for more information.

Who can be a Councillor?

To be able to stand as a candidate at a parish council election you must

  1. be at least 18 years old
  2. be a British citizen, an eligible Commonwealth citizen or a citizen of any member state of the European Union, and
  3. Registered to vote in the Parish, or have lived, worked or owned property in Haddenham (or within 3 miles) for at least 12 months before an election

Apart from meeting the qualifications for standing for election, you must also not be disqualified.

Please note that it is the applicant's responsibility to check they are eligible to stand as a Parish Councillor. It is a criminal offence to make a false statement on your nomination papers as to your qualification for being elected, so if you are in any doubt you should contact your employer, consult the legislation or, if necessary, take your own independent legal advice.

For further information, please see the Electoral Commission's website.