Fellgate and Hedworth by-election details announced after resignation of John Robertson: South Tyneside Council reveals polling details to fill vacancy left by independent councillor quitting

South Tyneside Council has revealed more details of an upcoming by-election following the sudden resignation of an independent councillor.

By Chris Binding
Tuesday, 22nd June 2021, 5:53 pm
Former councillor John Robertson, who has resigned his seat
Former councillor John Robertson, who has resigned his seat

He then tried to retract his resignation, but was told this was not possible under rules governing councils.

Mr Robertson did, however, announce his intention to stand again to reclaim his seat, which he won in 2019.

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Former councillor John Robertson, who has resigned his seat

A vacancy was declared for Fellgate and Hedworth and a by-election to fill the seat has now been set for Thursday, July 29.

A dedicated webpage has been set up by South Tyneside Council for the by-election, including key deadlines and information for voters in the ward.

This includes dates for registering to vote in person, voting by post, information on applying for proxy votes and expected Covid-security measures at polling stations.

Poll cards will be delivered to voters in the Fellgate and Hedworth ward between June 24 and July 1 which will show the address of specific polling stations.

South Shields town hall

As with the local elections in May 2021, people attending polling stations are advised to wear a face covering (unless exempt), sanitise hands and maintain social distance.

Those intending to stand as a candidate in the by-election must also complete and return nomination papers by 4pm on Friday, July 2.

A full list of candidates is expected to be published after this date.

In a statement released at the time of his resignation, Mr Robertson thanked people who had contacted him offering their support, and revealed plans to stand again.

It came after he had been subject to sanctions after appearances before the council’s standards committee.

His statement read: “The stress of the recent Standards Committee hearings and the events of the past three years has taken its toll and I will now take a break.

“I would like to thank all of the people who have messaged me and contacted me in the past 24 hours.

“The council will be arranging a by-election and I WILL be standing again for election.”

In the latest round of local elections on May 6 2021, 2,340 people in Fellgate and Hedworth cast their vote out of a total electorate of 5,700 – a turnout of 41.1%.

Turnout in the ward has remained fairly consistent in previous council elections including 42.2% in 2019 and 40.3% in 2018.

Details of the upcoming Fellgate and Hedworth by-election can be found on the council’s website.

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