York & North Yorkshire

Richmondshire District Council in control of independents

Richmondshire District Council has become independently controlled for the first time in ten years.

Councillors Jane Parlour and Stuart Parsons joined the Independents at Richmondshire group more than a year after leaving the Liberal Democrats.

Their move has given the independents an overall majority of 18 out of 34 seats at the authority.

Leader of the council John Blackie said: "We are proud to be an official Independent council once more."

'No local disagreement'

It had been under no overall control since 2003.

Ms Parlour said she left the Lib Dems a year and a half earlier, but had remained part of the Liberal Democrats and Associates grouping on the district council.

"We have really good friends locally who are Liberal Democrats, there was no local disagreement but there was a real dissatisfaction with the national party," she said.

"There is now no central government pressure on us, we are free to act in the interests of those who have elected us."

As well as the 18 independent councillors, there are 13 Conservatives, two Liberal Democrat and Associates councillors, and one from the UK Independence Party.

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