It was a fantastic night for the Liberal Democrats in Torbay, last night on Thursday 2nd May, along with our colleagues from across Devon and the rest of England.
In Torbay, we defended all of our existing seats and gained 6 more, taking us to 13 seats in total. The Conservatives remain the largest party overall with 15 seats, along with 8 independents, in a 36 seat council.
In Torquay, new Councillor John Dudley joins our Group Leader Steve Darling and Swithin Long in Barton-with-Watcombe, with Cordelia Law being elected for the first time alongside sitting Councillors Mandy Darling and Nick Pentney in Tormohun ward.
In Ellacombe, we made two fantastic gains, with Jermaine Atiya-Alla and Jack Dart taking both available seats.
In Paignton, Liberal Democrats comfortably held both seats in Clifton-with-Maidenway, with Ian Doggett retaining his seat and Maggi Douglas-Dunbar successfully taking over from the retiring Adrian Sanders, whilst Chris Carter successfully defended her seat in Roundham-with-Hyde.
The big Paignton success in terms of gains on the night came in Goodrington-with-Roselands, where Rick Heyse and our Parliamentary Spokesperson for Torbay, Lee Howgate, were both elected, unseating the Conservative Deputy Group Leader, Alan Tyerman, in the process.
Elsewhere our Election Agent, Nigel Penny, gave the Conservatives a tough fight for the second seat in Roundham-with-Hyde, and we narrowly missed gaining a seat from the Conservatives in St Marychurch, with Deborah Brewer missing out by just 52 votes. Commiserations to all of our candidates who were unsuccessful in these elections - we will get them next time!
For a full rundown of the action and results from the count, and an interview with our Group Leader, Steve Darling, you can see the Devon Live article here: https://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/torbay-council-ends-up-no-2827436
Elsewhere in Devon
Elsewhere in Devon, our colleagues have also had tremendous success, not least in neighbouring Teignbridge Council where the Liberal Democrats have gained the Council from No Overall Control, gaining 10 seats on the night.
Liberal Democrats also took control - at least temporarily - of North Devon Councilwith 21 out of 41 seats, pending the outcome of a by-election for the Council's 42nd seat next month. The Conservatives have also lost control of both Torridge and Mid Devon Councils to No Overall Control.
In the South Hams, the Liberal Democrats also made 6 terrific gains, with the Conservatives only narrowly holding on to control of the Council with 16 of the 31 available seats. Congratulations to all of our colleagues across Devon.
Nationally, the Liberal Democrats have successfully held every Council we were defending across the country, have gained control of 10 local authorities and increased our number of Councillors by over 700 - our best set of local election results in the party's history.
We would like to thank you for all your efforts, kind messages of support and donations during the election campaign. We now turn our attention to the elections for the European Parliament on 23rd May, and preparation for a potential general election later in the year.