Fringe Box



Conservatives Hold Worplesdon in County Council By-Election

Published on: 4 May, 2012
Updated on: 7 May, 2012

The new duly elected Surrey County Councillor for the Worplesdon Division - Keith Witham, Conservative.

Friday, May 4: 1am
The Conservative Party held the Surrey County Council Worplesdon Division this evening. At a little after midnight returning officer David Hill (also Guildford Borough Council’s chief executive) announced the votes cast as: Paul Cragg (Lib Dem) 1236, Martin Phillips (Lab) 517, Keith Witham (Con) 2,022, invalid papers 19 and that Keith Witham was duly elected.

The winning candidate, in a short speech, thanked the other candidates, and the returning officer and his team for a well organised and efficient count. He said, somewhat tongue in cheek with reference to the relatively low number of Labour votes cast, that it had been a “huge victory” for the coalition and undertook to represent all his constituents irrespective of any party loyalties, working together with members of other parties where necessary.

The result, bucking the national trend, showed an increased vote for the Conservatives, by nearly 200 and a reduction of only 50 votes for the Lib Dems. The Labour party candidate, who was not present at the count due to illness, managed to increase his vote by over 300.

The by election was necessary because the previous incumbent, Nigel Sutcliffe, is understood to have moved away from the area.

Thursday, May 3: 10.15pm – Worplesdon by-election poll closes

Polling station at Worplesdon Memorial Hall

Polling has just closed in Worplesdon in the by-election for the vacant Surrey County Council seat. Although local elections are taking place in many parts of the country this is the only one to take place locally.

Counters at the door of the polling station at Worplesdon Memorial Hall reported that, while voting had picked up during the early evening, by 7pm they had recorded only 80 voters attending out of a possible 1,000.

Although it is expected that 20% of the total turnout is expected to be from postal voters it could still mean that the turnout figure might be very low. This could be partly due to dull and damp weather and partly due too to the isolated nature of this by election.

The Guildford Dragon will be attending the count to be held in the Council Chamber of Guildford Borough Council shortly and hopes to be the first to bring you the result and reactions from candidates.

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