A High Wycombe councillor said there are claims her colleagues will boycott Saturday's traditional mayor making ceremony amid concerns the next mayor is not fit for the role.

This comes after suggestions that former UKIP councillor, Brian Pearce, may not become mayor of High Wycombe on Saturday if councillors vote against him in a final ballot ahead of the ceremony.

Cllr Pearce has attracted criticism in recent weeks for “inciting racism” when he joked a traveller cull should be carried out on the nomadic community, which he was later forced to apologise for.

And last week he faced calls to stand down from the prestigious post after it emerged he recently lost a court battle over a tenancy dispute on TV’s Judge Rinder.

Cllr Julia Wassell, who represents Totteridge on Wycombe District Council, said she was aware some are refusing to attend the ceremony, however fears too few votes will be cast against Cllr Pearce to oust him from the role.

She said: “I am very disappointed that Brian Pearce is being made mayor following his comments about travellers. I am positive a number of complaints are being made and hope they are being upheld.”

A move to oust Cllr Pearce echoes controversy from more than 100 years ago when High Wycombe’s first female mayor, Frances Dove, was de-elected by her colleagues purely because she was a woman in 1907.

The official mayor making ceremony is one of High Wycombe’s oldest traditions, which sees the new mayor, dressed in ceremonial robes and chains, paraded in front of shoppers before taking their seat on the scales.

The new mayor and town dignitaries are weighed in in front of crowds, who are encouraged to jeer of people were found to have gained weight over the last year.

If Cllr Pearce does become mayor he will take the chains from Conservative councillor Zia Ahmed on Saturday.