Lib Dem gains in East Cambs send shivers down county Tories spine
- Credit: Ben Jolley
Conservatives lost overall control of Cambridgeshire County Council - partly attributable to Lib Dem gains in East Cambridgeshire.
The Tories have have 28 seats on the new administration with Lib Dems in second place with 20 seats.
Labour has nine seats on the council with independents taking up the remaining four.
There will be puzzlement – and some disquiet – in Tory circles over whether the Conservatives retain Steve Count as their leader.
He has been under pressure since his deputy leader Roger Hickford quit the council over the farmgate report.
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That report, so far unpublished, will be a priority aspiration for opposition groups who have consistently demanded its release into the public domain.
There will also be demands for greater transparency over the loans issued to the council’s property arm, This Land Ltd. It has received over £100m to establish and set up a new housing company and many opposition councillors have called for more information to be shared with elected members.
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Lib Dem gains in East Cambridgeshire saw both Ely North and South taken from the Conservatives.
Lib Dem newcomer Piers Coutts was elected for Ely South division, winning 1,763 votes - 45.64% share of the vote..
After winning, he said he was "astounded and delighted", describing that the support from the party and his wife has been "remarkable.
"Particularly because I had never been involved in local politics until two years ago.
"I look forward now to trying to deliver on some of the things we've promised and do our best for Ely South."
Lib Dem Alison Whelan was elected for Ely North division after winning 1,233 votes.
Lib Dem Lorna Dupre was re-elected for Sutton division after winning 2,155 votes.
She said: "I've been delighted with the level of support that I've received from residents.
"I'm very pleased to have earned their trust to have another term on Cambridgeshire County Council.
"I like to think that I've done my best to keep in touch with people throughout the year, particularly on social media.
"I have tried to reflect their concerns, answer their queries and assist them where I can and be a positive councillor representing their interests."
Meanwhile the Conservatives won the majority of seats, including Mark Goldsack who was re-elected for Soham North and Isleham division.
Having won 1,570 votes he said: "I'm incredibly proud to have been re-elected and want to thank everyone that voted for me.
"I've worked hard, but I've worked hard since I got elected in the by-election for the post.
"I continue to work hard; I'm very fortunate to have grown up in this town and attended the local school.
"Now, I live in Isleham - it's been a very fair and open contest. I'm a bit disappointed by the turnout but I've worked hard for this and I'm very happy."
Conservative Daniel Schunmann was elected for a second time to the Soham South and Haddenham division.
Having won 1,620 votes - a 51.44% share of the votes - he said: "I think it's a reflection of all of the hard work the Conservatives have put in over the last four years.
"It's been a really tough year and I think the way the council has supported its residents has really shone through.
"I'm really excited about the future and, particularly, the Green Agenda. We want to continue that and try and reduce our carbon and improve the environment.
"I think that's a really key issue and this election has showed us how much that matters to people.
"It's something I've led on and it seems to have resonated with residents. Over the next four years, we will continue that good workl"
Elsewhere, Conservative Alan Sharp was elected for Woodditton division, with 50.39% of the votes.
Conservative Josh Schumann was re-selected for Burwell division, winning 1,551 votes and 51.60% of the votes..
Conservative David Ambrose Smith was elected for Littleport division, winning 904 votes - that's 53.71 per cent of the votes.
And Virginie Ganivet won the Ely North parish by-election with 689 votes.
Josh Schumann - Elected
Conservative (1551 votes / 51.60%)
Labour (694 votes / 23.09%)
Liberal Democrats (761 votes / 25.32%)
Alison Whelan - Elected
Liberal Democrats (1233 votes / 42.14%)
Conservative (1080 votes / 36.91%)
Green (240 votes / 8.20%)
Labour (373 votes / 12.75%)
Green (360 votes / 9.32%)
Piers Coutts - Elected
Liberal Democrats (1763 votes / 45.64%)
Labour (618 votes / 16.00%)
Conservative (1122 votes / 29.04%)
David Ambrose Smith - Elected
Conservative (904 votes / 53.71%)
Labour (363 votes / 21.57%)
Green (165 votes / 9.80%)
Liberal Democrats (251 votes / 14.91%)
SOHAM NORTH AND ISLEHAM
Mark Goldsack - Elected
Conservative (1570 votes / 62.93%)
Liberal Democrats (400 votes / 16.03%)
Labour (367 votes / 14.71%)
Green (158 votes / 6.33%)
SOHAM SOUTH AND HADDENHAM
Dan Schumann - Elected
Conservative (1620 votes / 51.44%)
Green (236 votes / 7.49%)
Liberal Democrats (740 votes / 23.50%)
Labour (553 votes / 17.56%)
Lorna Dupre - Elected
Liberal Democrats (2155 votes / 65.26%)
Conservative (972 votes / 29.44%)
Labour (175 votes / 5.30%)
Anna Bradnam - Elected
Liberal Democrats (1462 votes / 35.97%)
Conservative (1050 votes / 25.83%)
Labour (1053 votes / 25.90%)
Green (500 votes / 12.30%)
Green (355 votes / 10.77%)
Labour (471 votes / 14.29%)
Liberal Democrats (809 votes / 24.54%)
Alan Sharp - Elected
Conservative (1661 votes / 50.39%)
HISTON AND IMPINGTON
Khadija Arsalan Ghani
Labour (630 votes / 16.06%)
Ros Hathorn - Elected
Liberal Democrats (2240 votes / 57.11%)
Green (327 votes / 8.34%)
Conservative (725 votes / 18.49%)
COTTENHAM AND WILLINGHAM
Neil Gough - Elected
Liberal Democrats (2045 votes / 53.21%)
Conservative (1363 votes / 35.47%)
Green (435 votes / 11.32%)