Richard Misses Out on Being Election Candidate for Town Council Due to Bureaucracy

Richard Pinches, a life-long resident of Henley was narrowly denied his application to stand as an independent candidate in the upcoming local elections for Henley Town Council on 4 May in the South Ward due to bureaucracy.

As well as living in Henley, Richard has also run his commercial photography business, Meadows Farm Studios in the town since 1987 and is already a committee member of the Town Council’s Events Committee.  He has also been an active Henley Poppy Appeal and Toad Patrol volunteer for the last few years.

The deadline for the election candidates was on 4 April at 4.00pm.  Richard explained, “I’ve always been very community based and I thought this might be my chance to add something back into my lovely hometown. I had the required signatures on the nomination form which had to be handed in, in person, but according to the information not necessarily by the candidate himself. I got to the council offices just before 4pm on the last day and I gave it to a council worker I met by one of their doors and explained the urgency and asked if they could pass it to the correct person before 4pm.  My fingers were crossed but the official notification came back as invalid, which was very disappointing. I managed to get through to the Returning Officer on the phone and he said that it was a legal requirement for it to be handed directly to the Returning Officer.  I argued that I gave it to a council worker, at the door of the council offices, to give to the correct person, but apparently this wasn’t sufficient. On checking the form, it doesn’t make this clear at all if you look at the wording (see below). It’s a shame as I think I could have added to the community by standing as an independent. Maybe next time!”

Richard for the time being will continue to be an active member of the Events Committee and is working on bringing back the St George’s Day parade and fair in town in 2024.

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