Batley and Spen by-election 2021 candidates: who is standing in Kirklees contest alongside George Galloway?

Voters will vote to replace previous MP Tracy Brabin who stood down following her election as West Yorkshire's mayor

Batley and Spen by-election 2021 candidates: who is standing in Kirklees contest alongside George Galloway? (Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images)
Batley and Spen by-election 2021 candidates: who is standing in Kirklees contest alongside George Galloway? (Photo by Ian Forsyth/Getty Images)

Voters in Batley and Spen will go to the polls this week to decide who will replace their outgoing Labour MP, Tracy Brabin

Labour’s majority in the seat is not a large one, and after overturning a similar one in Hartlepool in May the Conservatives will be hopeful of a win.

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This will be the fifth parliamentary election in the constituency since 2015, a record in modern British politics.

Who are the candidates?

Labour’s candidate to defend the seat is Kim Leadbeater, a local campaigner and the sister of Jo Cox, the former MP for the constituency who was killed by a far-right terrorist in 2016.

The Conservatives have selected a councillor from Leeds, Ryan Stephenson, to challenge the seat.

Among the many independent and smaller party candidates to have announced they will stand in Batley and Spen is former politician George Galloway, for the Workers Party.

A number of political parties which were expected to stand have already announced that they will not contest the Batley and Spen by-election.

These include Reform UK, formerly known as the Brexit Party, and Reclaim, Laurence Fox’s party.

The candidate who came in third place in the 2019 general election, Paul Halloran, announced last week that he would not be standing this time around.

Writing on Facebook, Halloran said he had been in discussion with Fox’s party, and that he will work with them to “hold all the candidates to account”.

The Northern Independence Party, which backed a candidate in the recent Hartlepool by-election, will not field a candidate in Batley and Spen.

The Green Party initially announced that it would stand Ross Peltier, a rugby league player from Bradford.

However, Peltier was then withdrawn as a candidate over offensive Tweets he sent a number of years ago, and the Green Party will not field a replacement.

Here are all the candidates standing in the by-election.

Paul Bickerdike - Christian Peoples Alliance Mike Davies - Alliance for Green Socialism Jayda Fransen - Independent George Galloway - Workers Party Tom Gordon - Liberal Democrats Therese Hirst - English Democrats Howling Laud Hope - The Official Monster Raving Loony Party Susan Laird - Heritage Party Kim Leadbeater - Labour Party Oliver Purser - Social Democratic Party Corey Robinson - Yorkshire Party Andrew Smith - Rejoin EU Ryan Stephenson - Conservative Party Jack Thomson - UK Independence Party Jonathan Tilt - Freedom Alliance Anne Marie Waters - The For Britain Movement

When will the election take place?

The by-election will take place on 1 July.

If you live in Batley and Spen and are eligible to vote but haven’t yet registered, you have until 15 June to do so.

You can check if you are registered to vote here, and find out more information about applying for a proxy vote here.

Why will there be a by-election?

There will be a by-election in Batley and Spen because the constituency’s current MP has to step down from her current role to take on the job of West Yorkshire metro mayor.

Tracy Brabin won the first West Yorkshire Mayoral election with 310,923 votes.

The West Yorkshire mayoral role includes the powers of Police and Crime Commissioner, which cannot be held by a sitting MP.

This is unlike the role of South Yorkshire mayor, held by Brabin’s Labour colleague Dan Jarvis, who retains his Barnsley seat as well as the mayoral office in a dual role.

Sadiq Khan and Andy Burnham both had to step down from their seats as MPs to take on their current roles as mayors of Greater London and Greater Manchester, respectively.