Conservative sweep to by election triumph

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THE Conservatives' strong grip on Wyre Council was maintained as a new councillor was elected in Cleveleys.

David Walmsley topped the polls to be voted in as the new Jubilee ward representative.

Voters headed to the polls following the death of fellow Tory Alan Heppenstall, who died last month aged 71.

Coun Walmsley won by a majority of 492 votes.

He said: "I'm absolutely delighted to have won.

"The votes are vindication of the strong support of Wyre Council which is Conservative led.

"I'm here to represent the people of Jubilee ward, however, regardless of their political persuasion.

"I'm pleased local people have seen me fit to represent them which I will do to the very best of my ability."

Coun Walmsley, 64, who lives on Lanefield Drive, is a retired research analyst for Lancashire Police.

He beat the UK Independence Party's Roy Hopwood, who polled 345 votes, Labour's Wayne Martin, who came third with 331 votes, and British National Party candidate James Clayton who polled 116 votes in last place.

Last week there was a protest at the Frank Townend Centre as more than 60 people turned out in opposition to a BNP rally held there.

The make-up of Wyre Council is now: 46 Conservative councillors, seven Labour, one Lib Dem and one Independent.