Conservatives triumph in local elections

LABOUR suffered a furious backlash from voters in Suffolk, hanging on to just three seats on the county council in the elections on Thursday.The Conservatives won 53 of the 75 seats on the council, as Labour held on to just three seats, all in Ipswich.

LABOUR suffered a furious backlash from voters in Suffolk, hanging on to just three seats on the county council in the elections on Thursday.

The Conservatives won 53 of the 75 seats on the council, as Labour held on to just three seats, all in Ipswich. The result was reflected in Beccles, Bungay and Halesworth, and the Greens were also celebrating a good result, coming second in several seats.

David Ritchie, replacing veteran Morris Rose for the Conservatives, held the Bungay seat comfortably, with Green Paul Jackson second and Labour a poor fourth.

It was the same story in Halesworth, held comfortably by Tony Goldston for the Tories with Jan Berry second for the Greens and Labour again fourth. And in Beccles Mark Bee, leader of Waveney District Council, and Chris Punt took the two seats up for grabs for the Conservatives, with the Greens in third and fourth place through Graham Elliott and Netta Swallow respectively.

It meant Labour's veteran county councillor John Taylor lost his seat to Mr Punt, but Labour did finish third, ahead of the Liberal Democrats.

In Norfolk, Tony Tomkinson retained the Clavering seat, with Labour back in fifth place. There, UKIP came a healthy third, with the Liberal Democrats second.

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In the Loddon seat the veteran Adrian Gunson had a massive majority for the Conservatives, polling 3087 votes - second place Lib Dems managed just 481.

In the Waveney seats in Suffolk Labour's Julian Swainson and former council leader Jane Hore both lost their seats in Lowestoft South, where the UK Independence Party (UKIP) won their first seat on the council with candidate Bill Mountford. Conservative Deanna Law won the second seat. The Green party also won its first two county councillors.

This week Green spokesman Graham Elliott said the Party in Waveney achieved its best ever results but failed to gain any representation, despite polling 17.2pc of the votes across Waveney, comfortably beating the Lib Dems and coming close to beating Labour.

He said in the European election the Green Party narrowly missed getting an MEP elected for the Eastern Region despite a huge increase in their share of the vote.

“It was very disappointing to see Rupert Read narrowly miss being elected as a Green Party MEP for the region,” he said.

In Norfolk the Tories won 60 of the 84 seats and Labour slumping to fourth place. Labour now has three seats, losing 19 of its 22 divisions. Labour's vote slumped to 13.78pc of the vote, while the Lib Dems, with 22.68pc of the vote, are now the official opposition group. Norfolk also returned its first UKIP county councillor after Rex Parkin-son-Hare won in the Yarmouth division of Nelson and Southtown from Labour.

The result is a triumph for Tory council leader Daniel Cox, who saw his Party gain 13 seats and secure 45.91pc of the vote.



BUNGAY: L Caswell (Lab) 416; P Jackson (G) 657; D O'Neill (LD) 466; D Ritchie (C) 1,515 - C hold

HALESWORTH: J Berry (G) 572; J Blowers O'Neill (LD) 443; P Coghill (Lab&Co) 419; T Goldson (C) 1,553 - C hold

BECCLES (2 seats): M Bee (C) 2,021; A Briggs (LD) 604; G Elliott (G) 1,473; B Howe (LD) 386; K Jenkins (Lab) 704; C Punt (C) 1,782; N Swallow (G) 1,018; J Taylor (Lab) 746 - C hold / C gain

KESSINGLAND & SOUTHWOLD: J Goldsmith (C) 1,330; M Platt (G) 259; L Roberts (LD) 348; J Tyler (UKIP) 870; J Wheatley (Lab&Co) 363 - C hold

GUNTON (2 seats): P Eyres (G) 919; M Lavill (LD) 731; M Narburgh (G) 822; K Patience (Lab) 1,263; B Provan (C) 1,440; M Rudd (C) 1,648; S Taylor (LD) 661; D Thomas (Lab) 958 - C gain / C gain

OULTON (2 seats): M Barnard (C) 1,887; A Barron (Lab) 1,074; B Batchelder (LD) 456; M Cherry (Lab) 1,063; C Goodings (G) 438; B Ladd (UKIP) 1,280; C Law (C) 1,536; B Poole (UKIP) 1,222; T Rix (G) 438; J Russell (LD) 447 - C gain / C gain

PAKEFIELD (2 seats): R Bellham (Lab) 923; P Byatt (Lab) 958; K Gosling (C) 1,659; M Milan (G) 727; J Russell (LD) 641; K Sale (C) 1,569; S Tonge (LD) 584; P Tregear (G) 645 - C hold / C gain

LOWESTOFT SOUTH (2 seats): J Harrison (G) 574; J Hore (Lab) 1,016; R Hudson (LD) 932; D Law (C) 1,200; M Liddiment (G) 426; B Mountford (UKIP) 1,318; J Starling (C) 1,098; J Swainson (L) 788; C Thomas (LD) 793 - C gain / UKIP gain

Suffolk Coastal:

BLYTHING: J Barrett (G) 399; P Bennett (Lab) 222; R Leighton (C) 1,382; D Remy (Ind) 192; B Slater (LD) 1,075 - C hold


South Norfolk:

CLAVERING: D Gifford (UKIP) 653; J Shanahan (Lab) 230; A Smith (LD) 989; T Tomkinson (C) 1492; D West (G) 405 - C hold

LODDON: A Gunson (C) 3087; T Sanders (Lab) 233; I Wagenknecht (Ind) 176; J Walker (LD) 481 - C hold

LOTHINGLAND: C Aldred (UKIP) 948; P Cook (C) 1326; B Walker (Lab) 645 - C gain from Labour

Key: British National Party -BNP; Conservative - C; Green - G; Independent - Ind; Labour - Lab; Labour and Cooperative Party -Lab&Co; Libertarian Party - LP; LibDem - LD; Lincolnshire Independents -LInd; United Kingdom First -UKF; UK Independence Party UKIP; Standing With No Description -SWND; Suffolk Together -ST.

# Voting in the European elections largely followed the county pattern, with the Conservatives tolling the poll and UKIP gaining two of the seven seats in the eastern region.

Of those the Conservatives have three - Geoffrey van Orden, Robert Sturdy and Vicky Ford; Labour one - Richard Howitt; UKIP two - David Campbell-Bannerman and Stuart Agnew; and the Lib Dems one - Andrew Duff.