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Wolverhampton election: Labour and Tories swap seats as city council stays red

The order remained the same as both of the leading parties lost and won a seat at the Wolverhampton Council elections.

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Carol Hyatt won Merry Hill for Labour

A total of 20 seats were up for grabs on the Labour-run council last night, but in the end both they and the Conservatives made one gain and one loss.

The result leaves the make-up of Wolverhampton Council exactly the same as it was going into yesterday's vote; 44 Labour councillors, and 16 Conservatives.

Bushbury North was a target for the Conservatives, and Conservative Deputy Leader Simon Bennett was elected ahead of Labour candidate Alan Butt and Liberal Democrat candidate Harry Marston.

The newly elected councillor said it was an incredible feeling and said he would work hard for his constituents.

He said: "It's been a really hard and tough campaign and we have had to fight really hard against the incumbent councillor, so I think we can now show we want to work for the local area and have better ideas for the area.

"As a Bushbury resident, more than anything, I want to make sure that residents benefit from the services, infrastructure and everything else I can bring them as a new councillor.

"The biggest issues are the Green Belt, which the Labour Party are trying to sell off and one of my pledges is to fight as hard as I can to protect that from development."

Simon Bennett celebrates taking Bushbury North for the Conservatives

In Merry Hill, Labour were looking to take the seat and standing Conservative candidate James Montero was beaten by Labour's Carol Hyatt, who won by just six votes after a recount ahead of Mr Montero and Liberal Democrat candidate David Marsh.

The visibly emotional Ms Hyatt said she was very overwhelmed and was excited to get started.

She said: "I'd like to say a huge thank you to everybody who has supported me on this journey, especially my superb agent Andy Winter.

"I look forward to working for the constituents of Merry Hill and the hard work begins tomorrow and it's just fantastic."

There were few other surprises at the Wolverhampton Council Election count as the status quo was maintained in the city council following a long evening of counting and verification at Aldersley Leisure Village.

Council leader Ian Brookfield holds up a sign to congratulate Paul Sweet who is ill at home

The Conservatives had come in expecting to win at least one new seat, while Labour were looking to hold onto the 17 seats they held at the time of the election and, potentially, win one more from the Conservatives.

The sports hall at Aldersley Sports Village was a hive of activity once the 124 voting boxes arrived from the polling stations of the 20 wards being contested, with candidates walking up and down the hall observing the count and verifying the number of votes cast.

At around 1am, the verification ended and the count was able to continue for all wards, with the final results being announced after 3am.

Voter turnout stood at less than a third, with 50,395 people out of 183,932 registering a vote, a percentage of 27.40.

It was a long night for some of those at the count

Turnout was highest in Tettenhall Wightwick with 39.96 per cent with Penn next highest with 39 per cent, while the lowest turnout was 18.90 per cent in Bushbury South and Low Hill, followed by 19.05 per cent in East Park.


Wolverhampton Council Leader Councillor Ian Brookfield said the number of votes cast for Labour was a positive ahead of the run in to a General Election.

He said: "Our share of the votes in Wolverhampton has gone up, which is good news in relation to any general election and I think the red wall Conservative seats will be pretty worried at the end of the day once they see the size of the ballot boxes.

"As a council, the biggest thing we need to work on is the cost of living increase, even today with the increase in interest rates, and I think it's going to get worse before it gets better, so we need to do what we can as a city council to help out."