Conservatives control wiped out as North Somerset Council looks set to change hands

Liberal Democrats celebrate as Conservatives take heavy loses

Liberal Democrats celebrate as Conservatives take heavy loses - Credit: Archant

North Somerset Council has an uncertain future as no one party can form a majority after a disastrous morning for the Tories.

Independents and the Liberal Democrats made major gains with both gaining seat at the expense of the Conservatives.

Although former council leader, Nigel Ashton managed to hold onto his seat, deputy council leader Elfan Ap Rees was not so lucky, losing his Hutton and Locking seat to independent Mike Solomon.

The final results were delclared shortly before 4pm.

* Conservatives - 13 (-23)

* Independents - 13 (+8)

* Liberal Democrats - 11 (+7)

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* Labour - 6 (+2)

* Portishead Independents - 4 (+4)

* Green - 3 (+2)

Liberal Democrat councillor Huw James, who won Portishead South in a recount by only three votes, said: “We thought we would be able to hold them to account, we didn’t think we would wipe them out.”

“It’s great that we now have a council more representative of the people who live across the district.

“The council was mostly made up of old white men so this is really refreshing.”

Liberal Democrat councillor John Crockford-Hawley said: “I was expecting the public to say ‘a pox on all your houses’ but I didn’t think it would quite be the slaughter for the Tories it has been.

“It will be interesting to see how the disparate group of independents will fit in and how Labour and the Lib Dems will fit around that.

“Its time for intelligent conversation.

“With the wide variety of parties and opinions we are finally going to have to have a conversation, rather than one dominant party telling the others what to do.”

Weston MP Jon Penrose said: “I have been here putting arms around shoulders as you can imagine.

“This is a bad day for the two biggest parties right the way across Britain.

“This sends a clear message to Westminster, which I have been saying for some time, that people want Brexit dealt with and they will no longer put up with the main parties behaviour.”

Backwell’s new Green councillor, Bridget Petty, who won in a landslide, said: “I’m really delighted I’m going to get the opportunity to work hard for my village.

“I think it has been a well delivered campaign but I managed to draw out a wide range of volunteers and supporters.

“I look forward to being a part of the fresh face of the council.”

Check out our live blog here for all the latest news and results.