WHILE candidates in South Gloucestershire Council’s elections prepare for polling day, most of the area’s town and parish council elections are already over.
No parish elections will take place in 69 wards across the district – in some cases covering entire parishes – because not enough candidates came forward to make a vote necessary.
In the Frome Valley area they include the whole of Frampton Cotterell Parish Council, where one of the 15 seats remains unfilled, the whole of Westerleigh & Coalpit Heath Parish Council and the East Ward of Iron Acton Parish Council.
And no candidates have been nominated at all for the seven seats available on Tytherington and Itchington parish council.
Elections will only take place in 22 parish or town council wards – but the one with the biggest battle shaping up is in Winterbourne.
While the parish council’s Frenchay ward saw four Frenchay Preservation Society councillors elected unopposed, the Winterbourne ward has 19 candidates vying for one of 12 places.
The Conservatives are standing 12 candidates: Jon Amos, Carla Attwood, Venish Bansal, Nicole Beebee, Mike Goodman, South Gloucestershire councillors Trevor Jones and Nic Labuschagne, Diane Marriott, Mary Newport, David Roughley, Theresa van der Merwe and Lawrence Ward.
Six candidates are running under the banner ‘Winterbourne Independent Voices – Working For You’.
They are: Fergus Arkley, Peter Bruce, David Eldridge, Laura Fogg-Rogers, Sharon Hancock and Penny Sykes.
Both Peter Bruce and David Eldridge are also running for South Gloucestershire Council as Liberal Democrats, in the Winterbourne and Frenchay & Downend wards respectively.
Labour is standing one candidate, John Lloyd, who is also running for election to South Gloucestershire Council.
The other parish ward in the area where an election will take place is the Iron Acton ward of Iron Acton Parish Council.
There are five candidates, all of whom are standing without party labels, for the four seats: David Barker, Paul Chapman, Adrian Edmonds, Denise Smith, Catherine Spedding and Jon Wright.
Iron Acton’s East ward has just one candidate, Robert Lomas, who is elected unopposed, with three seats left vacant.
In Frampton Cotterell the following candidates have been elected unopposed, with party labels in brackets where stated:
Central ward – Morgan Bolton, Tristan Clark, Edwina Pennell, Antonia Williams (Independent) and Linda Williams (Independent).
East ward – David Goodwin (Independent), Andy Pullen, David Williams.
West ward – Matthew Hemmings, Dave Hockey (Save our countryside), Pat Hockey (Independent), Alan Lankester (Green), Tim Niblett.
The six candidates elected unopposed in the Coalpit Heath ward of Coalpit Heath & Westerleigh are: Tristan Clark, Carolina Echegaray (Green), Adam Hill, Kate Kelliher, Jon Lean and Rob McCullough (Independent).
Carol Goddard (Independent) is the only candidate who stood in the parish’s Westerleigh ward, which leaves each ward with one vacancy.
In Rangeworthy, four of the five seats have been filled, and in Cromhall five of seven seats have been filled.
Nominations are reopened for unfilled vacancies within 35 days of polling day on May 4.
Those already elected unopposed do not have to run again but there could be elections if more nominations are submitted in a ward than there are vacancies.
If seats still remain unfilled after nominations close again, parish councils have the power to appoint or ‘co-opt’ new members.