Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Election results: Lib Dems gain Winchester from Tories

Lib Dems Image copyright Liberal Democrats
Image caption The Lib Dems celebrated taking control of Winchester for the first time since 2003

The Liberal Democrats have taken control of Winchester City Council from the Conservatives.

The Tories were defending a majority of one but lost six seats to the Lib Dems who won control of the authority for the first time since 2003.

Leader of the Conservative group, Caroline Horrill, called on national politicians to "come together and agree a deal" over Brexit.

The Lib Dems also became the largest party on Portsmouth City Council.

In Winchester, which voted to remain in the 2016 EU referendum, a third of the seats were up for election.

Mrs Horrill said: "It was the national picture that was frustrating residents. We're a 60-40 remain area and they're frustrated with all politicians who have failed to bring about a conclusion to the Brexit deal."

Liberal Democrat leader Lucille Thompson said: "There was a bit of anger over Brexit and I suspect a number of people didn't vote because of that.

"But whenever I spoke to people and they said 'Brexit is a mess', I brought them back and said 'this is a local election and it's about your local services'."

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Media captionPortsmouth party leaders react to the results

In Portsmouth, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats went into the election both holding 17 seats, with the Labour Party supporting a Lib Dem-led administration.

The Lib Dems gained two seats, Labour gained one and the Conservatives lost three - leaving no party in overall control.

Leader Gerald Vernon Jackson said it had been a "very good night" for the party in the city.

"We've gained seats for the third year in a row. We've been back running the council and clearly people seem to like what we do here," he said.

Tory group leader Donna Jones said it was a "tough picture nationally" for the Conservatives, but they would be "on their way back" at next year's election.

Image copyright Andover Alliance
Image caption The newly-formed Andover Alliance won seven seats in Test Valley

Southampton Test MP Alan Whitehead said he was pleased after Labour retained control of the city council and gained two seats overall.

"In some of those areas which had been going away from us, we shored that up and kept the vote solid and that's what led to the overall good result."

Elsewhere, a new independent party, the Andover Alliance, won seven seats on Test Valley Borough Council.

The party's manifesto "rejected national politics" and demanded "desperately needed" improvements in the town.

The Conservatives kept control of the council with a majority of five, after losing 11 seats.

The Lib Dems kept control of their stronghold of Eastleigh, and gained 11 seats on New Forest District Council.

The Conservatives retained control of New Forest, Havant, East Hampshire and Basingstoke and Deane.

The BBC calculates the change in councillors with the previous comparable election in that area.

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