Eastthorpe by-election unlikely

Ballot box
Ballot box

The Labour Party in Mirfield has decided against calling a by-election to replace outgoing Eastthorpe councillor Gary Bunton.

Mr Bunton, 26, announced his resignation from the town council last month as he looks to pursue a career in accountancy in Bristol, having been elected in May as Labour’s solitary representative on the Conservative dominated authority.

With neither Labour or the Tories calling a potentially costly ballot on the seat, it is now possible that a new councillor will be co-opted into the Easthorpe seat, provided no fringe parties or an independent candidate can obtain the 10 signatures required to call a by-election before nominations close on October 21.

Should that occur, a vote would be held in the council ward during the first week of December.

Coun Kath Taylor (Conservative) said she would welcome anyone onto the town council who had Mirfield’s best interests at hearts.

Coun Taylor said: “It’s obviously great for Gary because he’s got a job but it was nice to have someone a bit younger on the town council.

“But it’s difficult for someone with work commitments because it’s not just a case of turning up two council meetings a month - it’s all the work that goes on in the background as well.

“I just hope that whoever replaces him in Eastthorpe works for the good of Mirfield, that’s all you can say.”