The Conservatives held onto Ribble Valley and South Ribble last night setting the Tories up for election success around Lancashire.
Labour however have fought back today with victories in Chorley and Preston. In Chorley the result meant there is no overall control, but Labour took nine of the 15 seats available; defeating the Conservative majority.
Preston was taken by a 29-seat sweep across the city with victories in Ashton, taken from the Conservatives; and Larches, which was previously held by the Liberal Democrats.
The incoming Preston City Council leader, John Collins, said before the official announcement that Larches and Ashton were important wards for Labour if they were going to take control of Preston. In Larches, the results came in as an overwhelming victory for Labour with 914 votes, Liberal Democrats 703, and Conservative 337. Ashton’s results came in with Labour success at 750 votes, Liberal Democrats 132 and Conservative 517.
Outing leader of Preston City Council, Conservative Ken Hudson, remarked after the defeat: “Only 12 months ago the Labour party left us in such a [state], as we’re in today. And the point is that now we will be as strong in opposition as we were previously; in fact more so.”
The comments did not sit well the crowd as Hudson continued on over the booing: “We will be back; and we’ll be back with a vengeance. The Labour leader group will attempt to bundle along and keep Preston ticking along, until we get back in control.”
Listen to Ken Hudson’s outburst in full here: http://audioboo.fm/boos/349840-ken-hudson-s-outburst
*Keep an eye on the page through the day as we’ll be bring more updates as results come in across Lancashire*