Conservatives appoint Eddie Reeves as new Oxfordshire party leader

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image captionEddie Reeves is the new Oxfordshire Conservative councillors leader

Conservative councillors at Oxfordshire County Council have voted a new party leader after their former leader lost his seat in the local elections.

Eddie Reeves, councillor for the Banbury Calthorpe, was elected as the new Tory leader at a virtual meeting between members late on Monday.

Mr Reeves replaces former council leader Ian Hudspeth, who lost his seat in Woodstock to the Liberal Democrats.

He said he was "delighted" to have been elected.

Mr Reeves, a qualified solicitor and former district councillor in Northamptonshire, takes over after his party suffered heavy loses in last week's local elections.

The Tory group remains the largest on the authority with 22 seats after losing nine, but is short of the 32 needed for a majority.

The Lib Dems won 21 and Labour 15, which gives the parties enough to make an administration if they work together and talks are set to take place between them.

Mr Reeves replaces Mr Hudspeth, a councillor since 2005, who lost his Woodstock seat to Lib Dem Andy Graham in a shock result by 168 votes.

Mr Hudspeth had been the leader of the Conservatives since 2012.

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