Elections you can vote in
Types of elections
Elections are contested by candidates representing registered political parties (as getting people to vote for you takes a lot of organisation, which parties provide). Individuals sometimes stand for election as independents, unsupported by a registered political party.
There are three levels of democratic representation in Britain. These are:
Local government (council) elections
Walsall Borough is divided into 20 wards, each represented by 3 councillors. There is an election of one councillor in each of the wards in May each year. The 3 councillors each come up for election in turn. As councils are normally elected every 4 years, this approach of electing a third each year means there is no election in the fourth year. The next local elections are due on Thursday 2 May 2019.
Parliamentary (Westminster) elections
Members of Parliament (MPs) are voted into the House of Commons at a parliamentary general election. These elections have to take place within 5 years of the last election, but can take place at any time within those 5 years. The last general parliamentary election was held on Thursday 8 June 2017. There are three MPs representing constituencies in Walsall, please see our MPs and MEPs page.
European Parliamentary elections
Elections to the European Parliament are held every five years. The UK elects members to the European parliament on a regional basis. For more information on the European parliament and its members please view the UK Office of the European Parliament website. The last election was on 22 May 2014.
A by-election is triggered when a casual vacancy occurs, generally as a result of a resignation, death or disqualification of a councillor.
However, where a casual vacancy in the office of a councillor occurs within six months before the day on which the councillor whose office is vacant would regularly have retired, then an election is not held. The exception to this would be if the number of unfilled vacancies exceeded one third of the total number of members.
The process for triggering a by election is:
The returning officer issues a Notice of Casual Vacancy. This is intended to publicise there is a vacancy. It is normally published in the relevant ward’s local library, the election notice board outside council’s council house. Lichfield St, Walsall. the electoral services office and council’s web site.
A “notice of vacancy” (pursuant to section 89(1) of the Local Government Act 1972), is then required to be delivered to the chief executive by two electors in the borough, asking for an election to be held within the ward to fill the vacancy. There is no legal format for the notice but a suggested format can be seen below.
This “notice” needs to be signed by two local government electors, however, they do not need to live within the ward to be contested but they must be registered within the Walsall borough.
The returning officer will set the date of the by-election and it must be within 35 days of receipt of this “notice”. Saturdays, Sundays, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Good Friday or a bank holiday and a day appointed for public thanksgiving or mourning are excluded form the 35 days.
Suggested form of Notice to request the filling of a casual vacancy.
Combined Authority Mayoral Elections
Elections to the Combined Authority Mayoral are held every four years. The next election is due in 2020. For information about the Combined Authority Mayor.
The Electoral Services Office
Ground floor, Council House
Telephone 01922 652502