Date set for High Court battle after Hartlepool councillor loses seat by 10 votes

A High Court hearing is to take place in Hartlepool this week following claims by a former councillor – who lost out last year by just 10 votes - that residents were misled by opposition campaign material.

By Newsroom
Monday, 24th January 2022, 4:01 pm

In May 2021 Bob Buchan, who previously represented the Independent Union on the borough council, missed out on being one of three councillors elected in the Fens and Greatham ward to Labour’s Jennifer Elliott by 609 votes to 619.

Mr Buchan subsequently filed a petition to the High Court over claims of inaccurate information in Labour’s campaign material.

The High Court of Justice, sitting at Hartlepool Civic Centre, hear the case on Thursday, January 27, and Friday January 28.

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Defeated councillor Bob Buchan, left, is going to the High Court after losing to Jennifer Elliott by just 10 votes in May's Hartlepool Borough Council elections.

Cllr Elliott said she will be “defending herself robustly regarding the allegations”.

The plans had previously been before councillors in July 2020 when they were rejected by four votes to three.

Mr Martin-Wells stated Mr Buchan was not at the second meeting and voted against the initial application.

Hill View, in Greatham, was subject to claims which triggered Mr Buchan's legal challenge.

He said: "On the balance of probability, did that leaflet change six people's minds on the way that they would vote? I think most reasonable, rational people would say of course it did.

"It is disappointing it's come to a full blown court case.

"It's regrettable that the Labour Group and the candidate decided not to address the issue early on and that it's come to this."

In response, Cllr Elliott confirmed the case would be going ahead and said: "I will be defending myself robustly against the allegations.”

The case will be heard at Hartlepool Civic Centre.

She added she was unable to comment further until the case’s conclusion.

Modified plans for the houses were approved by councillors by 10 votes to one after the meeting was told that more social housing would give young people an opportunity to remain in Greatham.

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How all 108 candidates fared in the Hartlepool Borough Council elections

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