Council’s proxy election email manages to get the dates wrong – Inside Croydon

It’s only the first working day since the list of candidates for Croydon’s constituencies was published, and Croydon Council has been forced to issue its first public apology for its latest nonsense.

Katherine Kerswell, the head of the £192,000-a-year council, is responsible for managing elections in Croydon.

That’s the same Kerswell who ridiculed the council more than ever before when organizing the endless 2022 election, which saw Croydon four days to announce the results, with most London boroughs packing ballot boxes and arranging paper recycling by mid-Friday morning after Thursday’s election day.

Typos and dates: Croydon’s blunder-prome CEO Katherine Kerswell has made a poor start to the 2024 general election

The campaign for the 2024 general election got off to an inauspicious start on Friday, when Kerswell’s electoral services department issued a list of candidates with a whopping major typo in the name of someone who has only been MP for part of the area for a year . nine years.

Chris Philp had become Chris Hilp. Someone had the P.

But on Saturday, the vast majority of voters in the municipality received a set of instructions by email, which included the latest blunder.

According to the official email from Croydon Council, the deadline for submitting a proxy vote – to have someone vote on your behalf – was Wednesday July 26. Three weeks after General Election Day on July 4.

“Maybe that’s because Kerswell expects the count to take so long this time?” suggested a Katharine Street wag.

This morning, all those tens of thousands of misinformed voters received another email from Croydon Council, this time with an apology (albeit begrudgingly).

Not to be relied on: how the council’s original letter about voting options got the details wrong

“On Saturday we sent you an email about voting in the upcoming general election,” the latest email said.

“In the email we informed you that if you cannot come to your polling place on July 4, you can appoint a proxy to vote on your behalf.

“The email stated that the deadline for appointing a proxy was Wednesday, July 26 at 5 p.m..” Then they added: “This was a mistake.” Don’t fuss, Sherlock!

“The deadline for appointing a power of attorney is Wednesday, June 26 at 5 p.m..” Aaahhh…so for the campaign election day then? Right…

“The correct deadline for proxy voting and all other legal deadlines are on the council’s website and on the official voting cards that will be handed out to voters this week.”

They eventually added: “We are sorry for any confusion our original email may have caused.” So that’s okay then.

“Croydon Council’s damn thing never ends, does it?” said a concerned Council taxpayer.

On Friday, in her Weekly waffle In an internal email to council staff, Kerswell decided to patronize them all by telling them how important the D-Day landings in 1944 had been (she had heard about them on the radio on her way to work): “A real moment in history,” said Kerswell, who was clearly impressed by her own knowledge.

And in her classic ‘suck the egg this way, Grandma’ approach, she also went to great lengths to explain that, as Croydon’s Acting Returning Officer, she is responsible for managing the organization of the borough’s general election .

“A few people have asked me what the difference is between the role of Returning Officer and the role of Acting Returning Officer.”

According to Kerswell: “This can be confusing because the titles are very similar…”. Kerswell clearly believes that all her employees are infantile idiots.

Kola Agboola, the ceremonial mayor of the municipality, does the ceremonial work as Returning Officer (so on election night he will read out the results).

“The Acting Returning Officer, the position I hold,” Kerswell carefully explained, “manages the electoral register, the conduct of the election, the counting arrangements and the Earl himself works with the election team.”

It’s just a shame she doesn’t include proofreading in her job description.

And to think that every time Croydon holds an election, Kerswell gets about £20,000 extra.

Read more: Kerswell chooses to go ‘in-house’ and count at Fisher’s Folly
Read more: Scotland Yard’s cybercrime unit is investigating Croydon Labour
Read more: Before you vote again, read this from The New Yorker

For more information on where to vote on July 4 and for the full list of who is standing in your constituency, use our widget here:

Find election information at


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