John Yates is the new councillor for Ely City north ward - winning by-election with a massive majority

Councillor John Yates

Councillor John Yates - Credit: Archant

Ely North Ward residents have a new representative with a familiar face on the city council following yesterday’s (Thursday) by-election.

Former city mayor and independent candidate John Yates took the seat with a whopping majority polling half of all votes cast.

Mr Yates who polled half of all votes cast previously served as a city councillor for nine years until losing his seat in May 2015’s local elections. He was mayor in 2011 and was due to take on the role for a second time when he lost out on being re-elected for the East Ward.

It was the first time in more than 20 years the city council had seen an election but 2015 saw 20 candidates vying for the 15 seats on the council including Councillor Yates who lost out on the East Ward seat to Councillors Lis Every, Richard Hobbs, Dian Warman.

However, there was no doubt over his election in yesterday’s by-election because of the 855 ballot papers counted 429 were in favour of Mr Yates.

He was declared the winner shortly after 11pm at the count venue the council chamber at East Cambridgeshire District Council.

His nearest rival was Labour’s Edward Browne who gained 179 votes, in third place was Richard Morgan, who gave no description of himself. He received 124 votes.

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Bringing up the rear in the four horse race was Mark Cooney of Spotted in Ely who gained 118 votes.

The turnout was announced as 16.17 per cent and there were five ballot papers rejected.