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MU General Secretary Election 2022 Learn more

In accordance with current trade union legislation, the Executive Committee (EC) hereby announces that an election for the position of General Secretary will take place in 2022, as General Secretary Horace Trubridge’s current term of office expires on 22 March 2022.

On this page you will find all the information you need to stand for election or propose, second or vote for another candidate to do so:

IMPORTANT CHANGES - Regional Nomination Meetings moved online

  • In-person Regional Nomination Meetings have been cancelled and moved online
  • Previously advertised dates and times will still apply for the new online meetings
  • Only members who have pre-registered to attend will be provided with log-in details to access online meetings

Based on significant rises in COVID-19 infections across the UK, and uncertainty over Government guidelines that may be introduced in the coming months to protect public health, the MU Executive Committee has taken the difficult decision to cancel all six previously advertised in-person Regional Nomination Meetings and replace each with an online meeting to take place at the same date and time. The Executive Committee considers this the best way to protect members’ health whilst ensuring that the Union’s essential democratic processes continue.

Please do not attend any of the previously advertised meeting venues as bookings have been cancelled.

The only way to attend your region’s Regional Nomination Meeting is to pre-register onlineRegistration for each Regional Nomination Meeting will close 48 hours before the meeting itself is due to take place. Any members submitting registrations after this deadline will be notified that registration has closed and, unfortunately, they will not be able to attend the meeting.

Pre-register to attend your region’s online Regional Nomination Meeting now.

The election process

The MU is constituted of six geographical regions: Scotland & Northern Ireland, Wales & South West England, North of England, Midlands, East & South East England and London. Candidates wishing to stand for election need to first secure nomination from at least one of these six regions.

Step 1: Written proposals

Candidates need to be proposed and seconded by eligible members of each region in which they wish to stand for nomination, using the official proposal form. Candidates can stand for nomination in one, several or all regions, provided they can secure a proposal for each of those regions. If a candidate fails to secure a proposal from a particular region, they will be unable to stand for nomination in that region.

​Step 2: Regional Nomination Meetings

In order to decide which candidate to nominate, each region will hold a Regional Nomination Meeting in January 2022. Members wishing to attend an online meeting must pre-register at least 48 hours prior to the start of the meeting. Then, the day before their chosen meeting is due to take place, they will be provided with a link to the online meeting and instructions on taking part. Members not registering in time will be unable to attend.

Candidates will be permitted to address the meeting for each region where they have secured a proposal in order to put forward their case for nomination. The meeting will then vote to decide which candidate is successful and pass a motion to nominate them. 

Pre-register to attend your region’s online Regional Nomination Meeting

Step 3: Election ballot

All candidates who have successfully secured the nomination of at least one of the six regions will be invited to submit a written statement of no more than 250 words setting out their case for election to the position of General Secretary, which will be included in a postal ballot of all MU members between 14 February and 7 March 2022.

Eligibility criteria

Eligibility to stand as a candidate for election to the position of General Secretary

The proposed candidate need not be a member of the region but must have been a member of the Union throughout the previous five years or must have had at least five years continuous employment with the MU immediately prior to the date of the Regional Nomination Meeting.

A Job Description and a Skills and Competence Profile for the role have been prepared in order to give potential candidates a clear indication of responsibilities before they consider standing.

Eligibility to propose or second a candidate for election

All current members of a region are eligible to propose or second a candidate other than retired members who have been excused subscriptions under Rule XI 2 (see below for more detail). No eligible member can propose or second more than one candidate for nomination.

Eligibility to attend and vote at a Regional Nomination Meeting

All current members of each region are invited to attend their respective Regional Nomination Meetings in order to take part in the selection process. Retired members of the region who have been excused subscriptions under Rule XI 2 are invited to attend but will not be eligible to vote (see below for more detail).

All current members of each region are invited to attend their respective Regional Nomination Meetings in order to take part in the selection process. However, members are required to pre-register at least 48 hours prior to the start of the meeting. Then, the day before their chosen meeting is due to take place, they will be provided with a link to the online meeting and instructions on taking part. Members not registering in time will be unable to attend.

Retired members of the region who have been excused subscriptions under Rule XI 2 are invited to attend but will not be eligible to vote (see below for more detail).

Pre-register to attend your region’s online Regional Nomination Meeting

Eligibility to vote in the resulting postal election ballot

All current members are entitled to vote in the resulting postal election ballot other than retired members who have been excused subscriptions under Rule XI 2.

Retired members

Retired members who have been excused subscriptions under Rule XI 2 may attend Regional Nomination Meetings, but are excluded from:

  • standing as candidates
  • proposing or seconding nominations
  • voting in a nomination ballot
  • moving or voting on a nomination motion
  • voting in a General Secretary ballot

Retired members who have been granted concessionary member status under Rule XI 3 may attend Regional Nomination Meetings, and are eligible to:

  • stand as candidates
  • propose or second nominations
  • vote in a nomination ballot
  • move or vote on a nomination motion
  • vote in a General Secretary ballot

Completion and submission of written proposals for nomination

Each candidate for a region’s nomination must be proposed and seconded by eligible members of that region, using the official proposal form.

Once completed, each proposal form should be scanned or photographed so that all details are clearly legible. The resulting electronic file should be emailed to the following addresses by the respective deadlines set out below, in order to allow checking of eligibility before each online Regional Nomination Meeting takes place:

The candidate must sign the declaration on the official proposal form prior to its submission confirming that they consent to be nominated, and that if elected, they agree to serve on such terms as the EC may require.

Download the proposal form

Regional Nomination Meetings

IMPORTANT INFORMATION - Regional Nomination Meetings moved online

Based on significant rises in COVID-19 infections across the UK, and uncertainty over Government guidelines that may be introduced in the coming months to protect public health, the MU Executive Committee has taken the difficult decision to cancel all six previously advertised in-person Regional Nomination Meetings and replace each with an online meeting to take place at the same date and time. The Executive Committee considers this the best way to protect members’ health whilst ensuring that the Union’s essential democratic processes continue.

Please do not attend any of the previously advertised meeting venues as bookings have been cancelled. The only way to attend your region’s Regional Nomination Meeting is to pre-register to attend the meeting online.

All members of each region are invited to attend in order to hear the candidates for election address the members and answer questions. Eligible members will then take part in a voting process to select which candidate will be the region's nominee to go forward to the main postal election ballot. 

Verified proposals of candidates for nomination by each region will be considered at online Regional Nomination Meetings.

Register for your region's online Regional Nomination Meeting

Regional Nomination Meetings have been scheduled to take place online on the following dates:

  • Scotland & Northern Ireland at midday on Thursday 13 January 2022 (registrations closed)
  • East & South East England at midday on Monday 17 January 2022 (registrations closed)
  • North of England at 11 am on Tuesday 18 January 2022 (registrations closed)
  • London at midday on Wednesday 19 January 2022 (registrations closed)
  • Wales & South West England at 11 am on Sunday 23 January 2022 (registrations closed)
  • Midlands at 1:30 pm on Thursday 27 January 2022 (registrations closed)

Registration for each Regional Nomination Meeting will close 48 hours before the meeting itself is due to take place. Any members submitting registrations after this deadline will be notified that registration has closed and, unfortunately, they will not be able to attend the meeting.

Register now

Once your registration is complete you will receive immediate automatic email confirmation.

Then, the day before your chosen Regional Nomination Process is due to take place, you will receive a further email, from UK Engage, the appointed independent scrutineer for the General Secretary election process, providing you with a link to the online meeting and any additional details necessary to attend and take an active part.

Nomination process

Each region can nominate only one candidate, and no member eligible to vote at the meeting can vote for the nomination of more than one candidate.

  • If no valid proposals have been received, this will be reported to the meeting, which will then conduct an anonymous online vote on a motion to accept the report and to record that it will not be making a nomination.
  • If only one proposal has been received, the candidate will be invited to address the meeting, and to answer questions from members present. The meeting will then conduct an anonymous online vote on a motion that it formally nominates the candidate. If the motion is not carried, there will be no nominated candidate from the region.
  • If more than one proposal is received, all proposed candidates will have a specified time limit in which to address the meeting, and to answer questions from members in attendance. Candidates will not be present online during any other candidate’s address or any discussion of the presentations. They will also not be present for any voting, other than proposed candidates who are also members (see below).  

Following all candidates’ addresses and any subsequent discussion, an anonymous online ballot of members present and eligible to vote will be held. Each eligible member will be permitted a single vote for a candidate of their choice, with the winner securing a simple majority of votes cast.

A proposed candidate who is a member and wishes to vote in their own region may do so. Arrangements will be made to ensure that this opportunity is extended to them, and that their vote is included in the count.

If the result of the ballot is a draw, a second anonymous online vote will be taken. If the result of the second vote is a draw, no candidate will be nominated from the region.

If there is a clear result from the ballot, the eligible members present must then vote by anonymous online ballot on a motion to formally adopt the winning candidate as the Region’s nominee. If the motion is not carried, there will be no nominated candidate from the Region.

Election Ballot

If more than one nomination emerges from the Regional Nomination Meetings, a postal ballot of the membership will be carried out, to open on 14 February 2022 and to close on 7 March 2022. Nominated candidates will be invited to provide a statement of no more than 250 words to be included with the ballot papers, along with a photograph.

It is intended that the postal ballot will be undertaken using the alternative vote system, a preferential voting system in which voters rank the candidates in order of preference rather than voting for a single candidate. However, clarification on this will be provided with the ballot papers and online at the time. Notification of the outcome of the ballot will be included in the Summer 2022 edition of The Musician magazine.

Independent Scrutineer

The EC has appointed UK Engage, Image House, 10 Acorn Business Park, Heaton Lane, Stockport SK4 1AS to act as independent scrutineer for the election.

Skills & Competence Profile

The EC approved a skills and competence profile of the General Secretary’s role and responsibilities.

MU Rules

For reference, Rule VIII (paragraphs 1-5) governs the General Secretary’s election.

Supporting documents

Supporting resources for the General Secretary Election 2022