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Council by-election cancelled at last minute

PUBLISHED: 20:31 18 March 2020 | UPDATED: 21:18 18 March 2020

Hellesdon Parish Council's by-elections will not go ahead this week. Picture; Archant

Hellesdon Parish Council's by-elections will not go ahead this week. Picture; Archant

Archant

Election organisers have postponed two parish council by-elections at the last minute.

Broadland District Council had planned to go ahead with by-elections in Hellesdon North and Hellesdon South on Thursday will not go ahead.

Plans had already been put in place to mitigate any risks, with pens and pencils set to be distributed on a single use basis. Voters were also going to be urged to wash their hands both as they enter and exit the polling stations.

The council has now announced it is following government guidance to cancel the election and apologised for the last minute cancellation.

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Candidates have been notified and notices have been put up at polling stations, telling people they will not be able to vote.

The by-election had been triggered this month following the resignations of four Hellesdon parish councillors from their roles.

Across the country, May’s local elections had been postponed until next year along with the selection of a new police and crime commissioner, casting doubt on the by-election.

Trevor Holden, managing director for the council, said: “This was only possible with a mandate from the Government, which we received on Wednesday evening.

“We apologise for the short notice in postponing these by-elections, but the safety of our residents is our greatest concern.

“Public sector organisations across Norfolk are stepping up in these unprecedented times.

“We have been really impressed by the community response and along with other districts and the county council we are reaching out to parish councils and community groups and working closely with Norfolk’s voluntary sector.”

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