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Will there be a vote to find replacement for Jo Cox MP?

Batley and Spen by-election scheduled but not certain

Yui Mok/PA Wire Jo Cox
Jo Cox

In four weeks time the citizens of Batley and Spen will have a new MP following the shocking death of Jo Cox.

The formal process is now underway and Labour will know who will be standing for them by around 9pm on Friday.

The woman chosen for the role will be either by screen writer and former soap star Tracy Brabin or party activist Jane Thomas – and if no-one stands against them then that person will become MP.

The main parties will not put up candidates, but if just one minor one does then an election will have to be held.

Why is it happening?

The horrific killing of Mrs Cox last June has left residents of the north Kirklees constituency with no Member of Parliament for several months and a new politician must be chosen to represent them.

When will the by-election be held?

It has now been confirmed that the vote to find her successor will be taken on Thursday, October 20. It will only take place if other parties field candidates to contest the seat. The deadline for nominations is Tuesday, September 27. If no other candidates come forward then the Labour Party’s candidate will be automatically selected as the new MP.

Who can vote?

If an election is contested registered voters in the Batley and Spen constituency will be sent polling cards and postal votes over the next few weeks.

When will we know the result?

Kirklees Council has confirmed a count will be held overnight beginning shortly after the polls close at 10.30pm. A result is likely to be announced in the early hours of Friday, October 21. The count will take place at Cathedral House in Huddersfield and is expected to attract intense media interest from across Britain and beyond.

Who can I vote for?

Four major parties have said they will not contest the seat out of respect for Mrs Cox’s killing.

The Conservatives, Lib Dems, UKIP and Green Party are not fielding candidates.

But Labour do not expect the election to be “completely uncontested”, with right wing groups Liberty GB and the English Democrats stating they will contest the seat.

WATCH below as Labour member pays tribute to Jo Cox

The Labour Party announced earlier this week that either former soap star Tracy Brabin or party activist Jane Thomas will be chosen to stand.

A hustings will take place at Upper Batley High School on Friday with the result due to be announced shortly after 9pm.

Thomas Mair, 53, of Birstall, is accused of shooting and stabbing Mrs Cox, 41, outside her constituents’ surgery at Birstall Library in June. His murder trial is set to begin on November 14.

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