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Most people can stand for election, however there are a few rules. You have to be:

  • a British citizen, or a citizen of the Commonwealth or the European Union, and
  • 18 years or older on the day you become nominated for election

You cannot stand for election if you:

  • are the subject of a bankruptcy restriction order or interim order
  • have, within five years before the day of the election, been convicted in the United Kingdom of any offence and have had a prison sentence (whether suspended or not) for a period of over three months without the option of a fine
  • work for the council you want to become a councillor for

There are specific rules around candidacy. The full range of disqualifications for candidates is quite complex and some exceptions may apply. Full details can be found on the website of the Electoral Commission.

Application Process

Now you're ready to take the next step to becoming a councillor.

Nomination

A prospective candidate must deliver to the Returning Officer for the election a valid nomination paper. Nomination papers may obtained from the Returning Officer at Northampton Borough Council, or from the Electoral Commission or from the Clerk. The candidate's surname, forenames, residence and description (if required) must be entered. The nomination paper must also contain similar particulars of a proposer and a seconder and his or her number and prefix letter from the current register of electors. The Returning Officer has a copy of this register, and the clerk of the local council normally has one.

They must be electors for the area for which the candidate seeks election (i.e. the parish, community or town or the ward if it is divided into wards): they must sign it.

Election timetable

Ordinary elections usually coincide with the election year of the principal council and must be held on the same day. The interval between elections is normally 4 years, but the term of office for the May 2020 elections will be 5 years to align with Unitary Authority elections in the future.

Find out more

To find out more about the application process and whether you are eligible to stand for election contact your principal council elections office.