Scarborough’s Labour group has made further inroads into the town hall, after a landslide victory in the Eastfield by-election.
In his second election victory this year, county councillor Tony Randerson secured a seat on the borough council, capturing just under half the vote.
However, just over one in seven voters bothered to turn out in Thursday’s snap election, which was called following the resignation of under-fire Liberal Democrat councillor Geoff Evans.
The win is the latest gain for Labour, having won by-elections earlier this year in Ramshill and Streonshalh, and the victory puts them level on nine seats with the Independent group, and as chief opposition to the dominant Conservative party.
Cllr Randerson, who polled 49 per cent of the vote, said he’d represent all of Eastfield - even if they didn’t vote for him.
“I would like to thank the residents of Eastfield for putting their faith in me and they can be sure that I will repay their trust by working hard for them as a member of Scarborough Council,” said Cllr Randerson.
“I’d like to place on record my sincere thanks to all those who voted for me but I will of course be representing all residents irrespective of whether they voted for me or not.”
In recent years, Eastfield had been a Lib Dem stronghold.
However, only one of the three existing ward councillors now represents the party, which didn’t even field a candidate to contest the seat.
And Labour group leader Eric Broadbent said the party had been “strengthened” by the victory, but that despite its recent growth, the group must still press on if wishes to make a dent in the Conservative’s stranglehold on town hall.
He added: “We take nothing for granted - especially the growing faith amongst residents in the Labour team.”