THE CONSERVATIVES have gained control of Seaford Town Council after taking hold of 15 of the available 20 seats.
The successful candidates were announced at the Downs Leisure Centre in Seaford and the outcome means a major change for the town council, which has had a Liberal Democrat stronghold since 2003.
Well known-faces such as Lib Dems Jon Freeman and Martin Cornforth failed to keep hold of their seats, with only Bob Allen from the party being re-elected.
Speaking before all the wards had been announced Cllr Allen said, “It’s going to be very interesting to work with so many new names. I think Seaford will be a Conservative majorty and will be a complete change there.”
In all but one of the town’s five wards - Central, East, North, South and West - the Tories had the biggest presence.
Only six of the 20 councillors that were on Seaford Town Council put themselves forward to stand another term. Four were successful at being voted in and they were Conservatives Ian White, Barry Groves, Linda Wallraven along with Lib Dem Bob Allen.
Martin Cornforth lost his seat after gaining 682 votes, 294 behind Conservative candidate Adrian Campbell who, with 976, had the most votes for the East ward.
They were some close votes with Lib Dem and Conservative candidates Charlie Carr and Clive Hudson missing out with 538 and 541 votes respectively, just behind Conservative candidate Mark Brown who was elected in the Central ward with 547 votes.
He will be the only Tory councillor in that ward with Ali Hayder, Terry Goodman and Stephen Gauntlett representing the Lib Dems.
Conservative Benjamin Warren, 22, was delighted after winning a seat in both the Seaford Town Council and Lewes District Election.
The Tory candidate said, “I’m ecstatic and can’t believe it. I’m really happy my district has got behind me and voted for me.”
He was equally joyous after learning of his victory at town council level.
Conservative Councillor Ian White, who also retained his seat at both councils added, “We’ve had a very successful day and now the hard work begins.
“We’re pleased with the result.”
The Conservatives also came up trumps at district council level which was previously Lib Dem led.
Twenty two seats were taken by the Tories, Lib Dems took 18 and Ruth 0’Keeffe retained her independent seat.
The district has 21 wards, five of which affect Seaford - Central, East, North, South and West. Conservatives Ian White and Barry Groves were successful in retaining their seats in Seaford West ward while Bob Allen also held onto his in the South ward.
Conservatives Tony Nicholson and Rob Blackman enjoyed outstanding success in Seaford East ward with 992 and 929 votes respectively. Elsewhere Lib Dem hopeful Andrew Johnson missed out on being elected by 69 votes in the Seaford West ward.
*For full results and pictures please see Wednesday’s Seaford Gazette.