UKIP councillor triggers by-election after resigning from seat

Huntingdonshire District Council Election Results, at the Ivo Centre, St Ives. Andrew Hardy, (UKIP)

Huntingdonshire District Council Election Results, at the Ivo Centre, St Ives. Andrew Hardy, (UKIP) with wife Hannah Hardy. - Credit: Archant

A by-election has been triggered following the resignation of UKIP councillor Andrew Hardy – little more than a year after his election.

Mr Hardy won election to Huntingdonshire District Council’s Huntingdon East Ward in May 2014.

According to the district council, since Mr Hardy’s election, he was expected to attend meetings on 25 occasions but only attended nine. Apologies for absence were received on 10 occasions.

Mr Hardy took 882 votes to win the Huntingdonshire East Ward at the district council elections, ahead of Liberal Democrat Stephen Greenall (848), Conservative Daryl Brown (702) and Labour’s David King (282).

In a letter to district council chief executive, Jo Lancaster, Mr Hardy said: “For some time now I have fighting an ailment with my back and unfortunately the prognosis is that my problems will continue for at least another four to five months.

“During the last six months I have been an in patient at Hinchingbrooke Hospital twice and on both occasions I have had to have an operation.

“Recovery from these operations has been a lengthy affair which has meant I have been unable to fully carry out my responsibilities as the elected member for Huntingdon East.

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“Whilst I was hopeful of making a full recovery in a shorter time scale, it is obvious that this will not now be the case.”

Mr Hardy said he felt he was no longer able to give his constituents the support needed and felt he “had no alterative” but to resign with immediate effect.

Nominations to contest the by-election close at 4pm on Friday, November 13. If the election is contested the poll will take place on Thursday, December 10, with polling stations in the ward open from 7am to 10pm.

All relevant notices and information will be displayed on Huntingdonshire District Council’s website