HALSTEAD Town Council says the election of a new mayor will go ahead, in spite of the lockdown.

The council has been forced to make changes to the way it works since coronavirus outbreak.

However, the council says it is “trying to maintain its normal level of service” and will still elect a new council chairman and mayor for the coming year.

The news comes as Braintree Council announced it will not be holding its Annual General meeting where a new chairman would be elected - instead opting to extent the current chairman's reign for another year.

A spokesman said: “In spite of the lockdown, Halstead Town Council is trying to maintain its normal level of service, while protecting councillors and staff.

“Councillors and the council office staff are in constant contact by phone and email, and council meetings are going ahead virtually via Zoom, so the council is able to carry out most of its all normal business.

“The only meeting which cannot go ahead is the annual town meeting, which is a community meeting where the public would normally attend.

“The annual town council meeting can also be carried out virtually and the council has decided to do this, and this is when a new chairman may be elected.”

The online meeting is on Monday, May 18, at 6pm.