Becoming an Oxfordshire Green Party General Election candidate: a brief guide
Candidates at UK General Elections receive a profile and opportunities bigger than at any other election in the UK. Becoming a General Election candidate for the Green Party in Oxfordshire will give you a unique chance to help and advance green politics in the county and beyond.
To be a candidate, you do not necessarily need any prior political experience although this obviously helps. However, as soon as candidates are selected, you can begin to use your position and status, long before any election date is set, to help champion green politics. You should be aware of how you can use the position to most effectively promote the party and what it stands for, and what you will need to do in order to make the most if it.
What will be expected of a candidate by the party
- You should be able to represent the party in public, particularly through public speaking
- You should be able to develop a relationship with the local media so that they know who you are and may seek you out for comment
- You should be able to proactively seek out opportunities to promote yourself, such as in the media, public meetings, and by contacting local organisations to speak to
- You should be familiar with current political issues and with party policy (in particular the main themes in the draft manifesto once it is drawn up)
- You should keep track of what the MP in your constituency is saying and doing so that you can respond or comment when appropriate
- You should be able to drive your campaign forward, and help get a team together to run it
What the party will do for the candidate
You will have the support of the party’s staff (the Local Party Manager and the Elections Coordinator) and its resources (such as the RISO printer and our website, canvassing and communications software). The national party (the Green Party of England & Wales) will also coordinate support and training for candidates through its regional field officer, and run a scheme to print each candidate’s main ‘Freepost’ election leaflet.
Oxfordshire Green Party will help fund your campaign through money it raises. The Elections Committee has overall strategic responsibility for elections, and will brief you on overall strategy and give advice and support on campaign goals and the campaign plan. The Elections Coordinator will help sort out meeting any legal requirements.
Being a good candidate inevitably involves some commitment to the role and a desire to make the most of the opportunity. The amount of time that you can spend on it is difficult to quantify, but activity and planning can begin as soon as you are chosen; it is not something that can be largely left until the election date is announced.
If interested, sign up on our candidates wanted page.
OGP Elections Committee
We need more Green councillors in Oxfordshire
Could you follow in the footsteps of our Green Party councillors, and stand for election? You could improve the quality of our councils by representing the people and views that the governing parties ignore.
Or you could help organise events and campaigns in your ward. Could you get local people to come out and join the campaign?
In May 2022 there will be elections for councillors in each of the Oxford City wards, and 1/3 of the wards in Cherwell and West Oxfordshire district councils. Then in May 2023 there will be elections in South Oxfordshire and the Vale of White Horse.
We need candidates to start right now, preparing for the elections in 2022 and 2023. Voters like to vote for people they have heard from over time, rather than those who just turn up in the last few weeks.
We are arranging meet a Green councillors sessions, where you can find out what Green county, district, town and parish councillors do and how they got elected. Check our events page. Here is a recording of one.
What you need to do to stand as a candidate
Do you want to win, or just to stand? If you just want to give people in your area a chance to vote Green, rather than being forced to vote for another party, you just need to get on the ballot paper and on our web site. On the other hand, if you want to help people as an elected councillor, you need to run a serious campaign as a candidate in a target seat.
There are places where we cannot win in the next election. It takes time to grow the Green Party in a ward until there are enough local supporters to run a campaign to win. In those areas we need a candidate to stand, while a ward organiser can run a few events and campaigns on local issues until the Green Party and the candidate are better known.
All you have to do as a non-target candidate is:
- Get nominated. You need to get 10 voters in your ward to sign a form saying they think you should be allowed to stand. They don't need to vote for you, or be Green supporters. They can be friends, family, or just neighbours. You have to sign forms in March and in May.
- Supply a photograph suitable for the web site.
- Write a short election statement for the web site. A bit about yourself, and a bit about what you would do if elected.
- Sign relevant candidate pledges to support particular campaigns (as advised by our policy hub team).
If you are interested, sign up on the candidates wanted page.
There are a number of seats where we have won, or came close to winning in the past. If you don't know what a councillor does, take at look at this councillor role description.
Obviously, such a campaign needs more work than just getting nominated. Candidates are expected to take an active role in their election campaign, including:
- join a campaign team, including a campaign manager, and senior roles to manage volunteers, publicity, data and fundraising,
- work with your team to implement a campaign plan,
- talk to hundreds of voters on the doorstep and at other events,
- taking part in campaign team decisions, including campaign messages,
- respond to voters questions and concerns,
- be the front person in fundraising appeals.
Candidates selected for target seats who commit to work hard enough to win will get support from the Oxfordshire Green Party, including guidance, opportunities for training and mentoring, technical support and funding.
We are committed to supporting people stand for election. If you have support needs to allow you to stand for election—from childcare to disability support needs—please discuss these with us soon so we can arrange support. Being in the Green Party means we are committed to work as a team, no one has to do anything alone, we will find a way to help in any aspect of campaigning and when people become Councillors.
If you are interested in winning a seat, let us know on the candidates wanted page, then go on to complete the candidate application questionnaire. There will be a series of target candidate application deadlines. Applicants have to complete a form, then speak to election committee members in preparing for selection hustings where you answer questions from members before they vote to select our target candidates.
Let's make everyone in Oxfordshire aware of the Green Party. Let's put up posters everywhere where there are elections.
We have small A4 posters you can put in your window, bigger A3 posters for large windows or to put on a garden stake, and some large Green Party boards that can be seen from a distance.
Tick the types of poster you can display, then leave a comment saying how many you need.
Or if you just want one or two posters, print this PDF.Become a volunteer
At both the recent local and Euro elections the Greens polled second, behind Labour, across Oxford City clearly establishing themselves as the City's second party.