Council by-election confirmed

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A BY-ELECTION will be held in Winthorpe ward to fill the vacant Skegness Town Council seat left following a councillor’s resignation.

First time Labour councillor Karen Bishop stepped down from her role in December, citing ‘business pressures’ as the reason for her resignation.

Following the official announcement of her decision, East Lindsey District Council publicly advertised the vacant seat and invited Winthorpe residents to request a by-election. The minimum of 10 requests were received by the district council and so preparations are now underway to host the by-election at an estimated cost of £10,000 to the taxpayer.

The usual polling station for elections held in Winthorpe, Seathorne Primary School, is currently unavailable due to refurbishment work, so until an alternative venue can be decided upon, no date for the by-election can be set.

Both local branches of the main political parties have announced intentions to stand for the vacant seat, though neither have said who the candidate will be.

Vice chairman of Skegness Labour Party Ray Beardsley said: “Now that 10 residents of the Winthorpe ward have requested a by-election the Skegness Labour Party will be defending the town council seat and will fight it vigorously. Naturally we would have preferred a co-option, however the residents of Winthorpe ward have spoken.”

Chairman of Skegness Conservative Party John Cowpe said: “We will definitely be putting forward a strong candidate for the seat. We want someone who will help continue the good work being carried by the Conservative team on the council.

“I think they are doing a very good job, not least in bringing a nil increase in council precepts. The Conservatives are sorry that the local council taxpayer are having to fit the bill which has been caused by the fact that a Labour councillor has retired so soon after being elected.”