Standing for election

How do I stand for election as a councillor?

To become a councillor, you will have to stand as a candidate at the local elections. Although most candidates are affiliated to political parties, not all are. You can stand as an independent candidate if you wish to.

Qualifications

To qualify as a candidate for elections to a local authority, a person must be at least 18 years old on the day of nomination and must be either:

  • a British citizen;
  • a citizen of the Republic of Ireland;
  • a qualifying Commonwealth citizen; or
  • a citizen of another Member State of the European Union.

A prospective candidate must also meet one of four qualifications:

  • be a registered elector for the local authority area, or
  • for the whole of the previous twelve months have lived in that area; or
  • for the whole of the previous twelve months have occupied, as owner or tenant, any land or premises in that area; or
  • for that twelve months have had their principal or only place of work in that area.

Disqualifications

There are a range of disqualifications which can prevent a person from standing as candidate at a local election. Further details of such disqualifications are shown on the nomination forms.

Paperwork

Any person wishing to stand as a candidate will need to complete the following paperwork:

  • a nomination paper, countersigned by ten registered electors for the ward in which you are standing for election;
  • a consent to nomination, confirming that you are willing to stand for election and witnessed by one other person; and
  • an appointment of election agent, unless you are taking this role on yourself.

If you are a candidate for a registered political party you will also need to submit:

  • a certificate of authorisation from the political party; and
  • a request to use the party emblem on the ballot paper.

If you wish to receive a set of nomination papers, please contact the Electoral Services Office on 020 8379 8582 or download a generic set by following this link (PDF, 339KB).

Standing as a candidate at UK Parliamentary, European Parliamentary and London elections

Eligibility for candidature for these elections varies, although the general criteria are that the candidate must:

  • be 18 years of age or over on the day they submit their nomination paper;
  • not be disqualified for any reason from standing;
  • for UK Parliamentary elections, be a British, Irish or qualifying Commonwealth citizen;
  • for European Parliamentary and London (Mayor and Assembly) elections, be a British, Irish, qualifying Commonwealth or European Union citizen; and
  • for London elections, have some connection to the area.

In addition, for these types of election, candidates must submit a deposit, which ranges from £500 to £10,000 depending on the election type. The deposit will only be returned if the candidate polls a specified percentage of votes, 2.5% or 5% depending on the election type.

Who deals with the candidate nominations?

Enfield's Returning Officer deals with nominations for:

  • Parliamentary elections for the Edmonton, Enfield North and Enfield Southgate parliamentary constituencies;
  • Elections to the London Borough of Enfield - there are sixty-three councillors elected across the twenty-one electoral wards of the borough
  • Elections of the London Assembly Member for the Enfield and Haringey constituency of the Greater London Assembly.

Nominations for the European Parliament are administered by the Regional Returning Officer, who will be appointed ahead of the next elections.

Nominations for the Mayor of London and for the London-wide Assembly Members are administered by the Greater London Returning Officer at City Hall, The Queen's Walk, London, SE1 2AA.