After 2019 was a year where it felt like people never stopped going to the polls, 2020 was totally different, with not a single election taking place in Devon and Cornwall.

The proposed local elections and Police and Crime Commissioner elections for May 2020 were just one of the many things to fall victim to the coronavirus pandemic, and under the Coronavirus Act, no elections will take place until May 6, 2021.

But assuming that they are not cancelled, then residents of Devon and Cornwall when they go to the polls will have a lot of crosses to put against candidates before putting into the ballot box.



As well as the delayed local elections in Exeter and Plymouth, and the PCC elections, the regularly scheduled 2021 Devon County Council elections will take place, as well as a series of delayed by-elections, and Neighbourhood Plan referendums.

So with 2021 about to begin, this is when you will be going to the polls again next year – presumably of course that coronavirus doesn’t cause any further delay to the elections.

EXETER

The delayed 2020 Exeter City Council elections due on May 7, 2020 will take place on May 6, 2021.

Each elected Councillor would normally be appointed for a four year term, with a third of the 39 seats contested each year (one seat per ward).

The 13 candidates whose seats will be up for grabs are those who gained the most votes in the 2016 elections, with Labour defending 11 seats and the Conservatives two, but the newly elected councillors will instead only serve a three year term to ensure the return to the usual electoral cycle.

Voters in the Mincinglake and Whipton will elected two councillors – with the person receiving the most votes serving a three year term and the runner-up a one year term – with a by-election also taking place following the death of a serving councillor.




PLYMOUTH

The delayed 2020 Plymouth City Council elections due on May 7, 2020 will take place on May 6, 2021.

Each elected Councillor is normally appointed for a four year term, with a third of the 57 seats contested each year (one seat per ward).

The 19 candidates whose seats will be up for grabs are those who were elected in the 2016 elections. Labour are defending 10 seats and the Conservatives seven, with two Independents, but the newly elected councillors will instead only serve a three year term to ensure the return to the usual electoral cycle.

Residents in the Drake ward will not be going to the polls though, as that is one of three wards in Plymouth who only have two councillors.

DEVON, CORNWALL AND THE ISLES OF SCILLY

On the same day as the local elections in Exeter and Plymouth, everyone in Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly will also have the chance to elect a Police and Crime Commissioner for the region.

That election will take place on Thursday, May 6, and Alison Hernandez, the incumbent, has already been re-selected as the Conservative candidate to continue in her post.

The election Police and Crime Commissioner for the region would normally serve a four year term, but will instead only serve a three year term to ensure the return to the usual electoral cycle.



Ballot box

DEVON COUNTY COUNCIL

The 2021 Devon County Council elections scheduled for Thursday, May 6, 2021, will take place as usual.

The entirety of the 60-strong council will be up for re-election, with 56 ‘single-member’ Electoral Divisions and 2 ‘two-member’ Divisions’.

The current composition of the council consists of 42 Conservatives, 7 Labour, 6 Liberal Democrats, 2 Independents, 1 Green Party, 1 East Devon Alliance and 1 North Devon Liberal.

All elected councillors will serve their usual four year term upon their election.

CORNWALL COUNCIL

All seats at County Hall are due to be up for grabs at the next election, which will take place as scheduled on Thursday, May 6, 2021.

But they will be contested on new arrangements reducing the number of councillors from 123 to 87.

The current composition of Cornwall Council is of 43 Conservatives, 34 Liberal Democrats, 32 Independents, 4 Labour, 4 Mebyon Kernow, 3 Independent Alliance, 2 non-aligned Independents, and 1 vacant seat.

All 87 elected councillors will serve the usual four year term.

MID DEVON

Three by-elections for seats on Mid Devon District Council will take place on Thursday, May 6, 2021, following the deaths of two serving councillors and the resignation of a third.

Voters in the Castle, Taw and Westexe wards will go to the polls for the by-election, with the winner serving a two year term on the council.

SOUTH HAMS DISTRICT COUNCIL

One by-election for a seat on South Hams District Council will take place on Thursday, May 6, 2021, following the death of a serving councillor.

Voters in the Ivybridge West ward will go to the polls for the by-election, with the winner serving a two year term on the council.

The by-election will determine the official status of the council, with the death of Cllr David May meaning that the Conservative’s majority was lost with the council back under no overall control, although the Conservatives are still the ruling party.



Polling station in Newton Abbot

TORBAY COUNCIL

One by-election for a seat on Torbay Council will take place on Thursday, May 6, 2021, following the death of a serving councillor.

Voters in the Clifton-with-Maidenway ward will go to the polls for the by-election, with the winner serving a two year term on the council.

No elections are scheduled to take place for East Devon, Teignbridge, Torridge, West Devon, or North Devon Councils, with no General Election scheduled to take place either.





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