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Summary

  1. Coverage of the 2016 English local council elections in the East of England
  2. Elections were taking place in 25 local authorities across the East region
  3. Currently 12 councils are in Conservative control, five are Labour and eight have no overall control
  4. The local elections are quite separate from the EU referendum on 23 June

Live Reporting

By Andrew Woodger and Nic Rigby

All times stated are UK

Election 2016: That's it for our East live page... now over to Local Live

That's it for our overnight live coverage. We'll now hand over to Local Live for more reaction and also results from the police and crime commissioner elections that are due to be declared later.

This report from Ian Barmer sums up the situation in the East.

Elections 2016: East of England round-up

Conservatives still main force in East

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

The Conservatives are still the main party of local government across the East of England, they run the majority of our councils, they have the largest number of councillors.

Tories celebrating at the Peterborough count
BBC

They made the only gain of the night - taking Peterborough out of no overall control. 

But the party will be disappointed that it failed to take Colchester, lost its only seat on Cambridge City Council and, despite a lot of effort, failed to get any councillors back on to the local council in Norwich. 

UKIP gains from Labour

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

Though Labour in general will be pleased by its showing in the local elections in the East, UKIP made major inroads in its support in Great Yarmouth, Basildon and Thurrock.

In those council elections, UKIP once again proved that it can command significant support at the expense of Labour.

In Great Yarmouth, UKIP is now the second the largest party on the borough council and will probably help run the authority in alliance with the Conservatives. 

Conservatives hold ward after by-election in Waveney

Andrew Woodger

BBC News

One by-election was held at Conservative-controlled Waveney District Council after a resignation.

It was no change in the Wrentham ward, which stayed blue:

  • Craig Rivett (Con) - 335 votes
  • Paul Tyack (Lab) - 252
  • Andrew Bols (UKIP) - 156
  • Christopher Thomas (Lib Dem) - 46
  • David Brambley-Crawshaw (Green) - 40

Mixed picture for Lib Dems in the East

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

The Liberal Democrats are still in play in the East. They will once again run Colchester Borough Council, albeit in alliance with Labour and they have an increased presence on the newly re-drawn Peterborough authority.

Lib Dems in Colchester
BBC

But it's a mixed picture: they lost seats in both Cambridge and Southend. 

The Greens now face a major problem. After a decade of almost unstoppable success, their loss of four seats in one night on Norwich City Council will hurt and they didn't make any gains any where else. It is clear that Labour's move to the left is winning back former Labour supporters.

Green councillors at the Norwich count
BBC

Conservatives remain in control of Welwyn Hatfield

The Conservatives remain in control of Welwyn Hatfield Council where all the seats were up for grabs due to boundary changes.

The Tories lost one seat as did three independents while the Liberal Democrats gained three and Labour gained one.

  • 28 Conservatives
  • 15 Labour
  • Five Liberal Democrats
View more on twitter

Football legend Peter Shilton joins fiancee at election count

England international goalkeeper Peter Shilton made an appearance at the Colchester Borough Council election in support of his fiancee Stephanie Hayward.

Unfortunately for the couple, Ms Hayward did not win the seat she was contesting.

Election 2016: Peter Shilton supports fiancee Stephanie Hayward

Labour relief at results in East

Andrew Sinclair

BBC Look East political correspondent

Labour will be waking up this morning mightily relieved. There were real fears last night among supporters that the party would lose seats across the East. But in its traditional heartlands Labour's vote held up and it also made several impressive gains.

Clive Lewis MP
BBC

Supporters of Jeremy Corbyn are already saying that this proves that the new Labour leader has what it takes to win parliamentary seats in the east. 

The MP for Norwich South Clive Lewis told the BBC this morning that Mr Corbyn's critics should "shut up or get out". 

Milton Keynes Conservative leader says 'Corbyn visit did it'

Paul Scoins

BBC Three Counties Radio political reporter

The Conservative group leader on Milton Keynes Council Edith Bald says the Labour voters may have been galvanised by a recent visit from party leader Jeremy Corbyn after the party ended up with the same number of seats on the council as the Conservatives.

She said: "We did recently have over 600 people attend a Corbyn rally in Milton Keynes which I think backs up my feeling."

No overall control

Nic Rigby

BBC News

Lots of councils in the East have found themselves with no one party in overall control.

In these circumstances two or more parties may form a coalition or some form of loose agreement.

Another option is for the largest party to run the authority as a minority administration.

Milton Keynes Labour leader says it's 'always been close'

Paul Scoins

BBC Three Counties Radio political reporter

The Milton Keynes Labour group leader Pete Marland has said it's "always been close" in the town after his party ended up with the same number of seats on the council as the Conservatives. 

Peter Marland
BBC

He said it was a "really good night" for the Milton Keynes Labour group as a whole as they held off a Conservative challenge.

He said: "The Conservatives were sure they were going to get a majority, they haven't, and actually I think what a majority of people in Milton Keynes have shown... is that there's a progressive majority in the city that want a fairer Milton Keynes, a more progressive Milton Keynes and want a more affordable Milton Keynes."

Colchester remains in no overall control

Simon Dedman

BBC Essex

Colchester Borough Council remains with no party in overall control following the local elections.

England legend's fiancee fails to get on election scoresheet

Peter Shilton's fiancee Stephanie Hayward has failed in her bid to become a Colchester councillor.

Stephanie Hayward and Peter Shilton
BBC

Ms Hayward, who lives on Mersea Island and featured on Saturday Live on BBC Radio 4 recently, was standing as a Conservative in the Highwoods ward.

The seat was won by the independent Gerard Oxford.

Son not like father

Andrew Woodger

BBC News

Earlier we mentioned that Ben Williams was hoping to succeed his father Geoff Williams as a Liberal Democrat councillor in Basildon.

Ben and Geoff Williams
BBC

However, when the ballot papers were counted for the Nethergate ward, it seems voters decided not to keep it in the family as they went for Derrick Fellowes of UKIP.

Basildon Council remains with no single party in overall control, but the Conservatives are the largest party with 18 out of a total of 42 councillors.

Making sense of the night before

Look East producer Ian Barmer is busy editing together pictures for this morning's Look East bulletins.

The main headline so far? Not a lot has changed.

Look East producer
BBC

The sun is rising... and the counts go on

But some local council election counts are still continuing, including in Colchester. 

This is our view from the Norwich newsroom which features the St Peter Mancroft in the foreground and the spire of Norwich Cathedral in the distance.

Norwich skyline
BBC

Council colours across the East of England

There are still some results still to come across the East region, but so far the only change in control is in Peterborough which has gone from overall control to a Conservative majority.

Labour councils in the East of England
BBC
Conservative councils in the East of England
BBC
Councils with No Overall Control in the East of England
BBC

Milton Keynes round-up: Council remains in no overall control

Paul Scoins

BBC Three Counties Radio political reporter

It's been a night of small surprises here in Milton Keynes, with Labour losing one seat to the Liberal Democrats and therefore ending up with the same number of seats as the Conservatives - both parties now have 22 seats and the Liberal Democrats have 13.

Milton Keynes count
BBC

It means that for the moment, Labour's Peter Marland stays in charge and that is unlikely to change unless there's some serious discussion in the next few days but I think both parties felt they could do better - indeed the Conservatives were hoping to take full control.

Labour, though, might be feeling a little bit more relieved that they didn't lose more seats and at the end of it they still are running the council for the time being.

Labour make four gains from the Greens in Norwich

It's been a successful night for Labour in Norwich as the party retained control of the city council, making four gains from the Greens in the process.

Election 2016: Labour make gains in Norwich

Thirteen out of 39 seats were up for grabs, resulting in the parties with the following totals:

  • 26 Labour
  • 10 Green
  • Three Liberal Democrats

At the scene: 'The tensions were palpable'

Jonathan Josephs

BBC News

The tensions at the Backstage Centre in Purfleet were palpable. Just when the final declaration seemed imminent it went to a third recount and even more nail biting, it was squeaky bum time.

Thurrock was a top target for UKIP on a national basis and in the end they fell agonisingly short in coming out level with the Conservatives. Nonetheless, they're jubilant at having picked up six seats, which the leader Graham Snell puts down to his colleagues hard work on local issues such as housing, jobs and the environment.

Conservatives hold Broxbourne

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

The Conservatives remain in control of Broxbourne Borough Council, gaining two seats from independents.

  • 26 Conservatives
  • Three Labour
  • One UKIP

Stevenage remains under Labour control

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

Stevenage Borough Council remains under Labour control despite the Conservatives gaining a seat.

Here is the make-up of the new council, where a third of the seats were being contested - turnout was nearly 35%:

  • 29 Labour
  • 7 Conservatives
  • Three Liberal Democrats
View more on twitter

The dust is settling Thurrock

The Conservatives and UKIP will have to find a way to work together after both parties each gained 17 seats.

Judging by this photograph of both local party leaders, it looks a fairly harmonious start.

1st photo new joint leaders of @thurrockcouncil. #tory & #ukip confident they can work together. 17 each. #Thurrock

1st photo new joint leaders of @thurrockcouncil. #tory & #ukip confident they can work together. 17 each. #Thurrock

St Albans remains under Conservative control

Katy Lewis

BBC Local Live

A third of the seats on St Albans City and District Council were up for grabs with the Conservatives remaining in control having gained one seat.

The Liberal Democrats also gained a seat while Labour lost one and there was also an independent loss. The Green Party councillor Simon Grover was re-elected for St Peter's Ward after a re-count.

Here is the make-up of the new council:

  • 31 Conservatives
  • 17 Liberal Democrats
  • 7 Labour
  • One Green
  • Two Independent

Labour leader set to stay on at NOC Milton Keynes

Paul Scoins

BBC Three Counties Radio political reporter

It looks likely that Labour leader will stay on in charge at Milton Keynes Council until at least the authority's AGM later this month, following the election results leaving no one party in overall control.

Labour and the Conservatives have 22 seats each after Labour lost one seat to the Lib Dems. The Lib Dems have 13 seats.

There is talk of coalition but Labour could end up running council. 

Scores on the doors in Daventry

Here's the final round-up from the Daventry Council count, courtesy of BBC Northampton political reporter Sam Read.

View more on twitter

Great Yarmouth remains in no overall control

Andrew Woodger

BBC News

Despite UKIP gaining four seats at Great Yarmouth Borough Council, the local authority remains in a situation where no single party has overall control, but the Conservatives are running the administration.

Thirteen out of 39 seats were up for grabs and UKIP made all of its gains at the expense of Labour.

That leaves the parties with the following totals:

  • 14 Conservatives 
  • 12 UKIP 
  • 11 Labour
  •  Two  Independent

BreakingConservatives win control of Peterborough

Conservatives have gained Peterborough City Council from no overall control.

BreakingTories hold Daventry

Conservative have retained control of Daventry Council.

So many colours to choose from... and we don't mean a political party

Ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes during the BBC East television election bulletins in the wee small hours of the morning?

It seems that a sugar rush is what it takes to keep things running smoothly. 

Norwich TV gallery
BBC

Ipswich a red dot in a sea of blue

Felicity Simper

BBC Look East

Suffolk is overwhelmingly Conservative with seven out of seven Tory MPs, but Ipswich Borough Council looks like it will remain a red dot in a sea of blue.

Labour has held its seats in the Alexandra, Whitehouse, Priory Heath, Bridge, Gainsborough and St John's wards and made a gain from the Conservatives in Sprites ward.

UKIP beating Labour on the Norfolk coast

Great Yamouth Borough Council had had no single party in overall control and that's looking like it will remain the case, but the Conservatives are holding seats, while Labour is losing out to UKIP.

View more on twitter

Neck and neck in Milton Keynes

Tom Barton

BBC Look East political reporter

Both Labour and the Tories are now predicting Milton Keynes Council will be hung, with both parties on 22 seats. 

Before yesterday's vote, Labour had 23 seats - one more than the Conservatives.

This would still be a bad result for the Tories who had hoped to overtake and become the biggest party, but Labour's vote has held up well with very high turnout in Labour areas. 

Labour needs to do more against Tories, says MP

With no elections at Luton Borough Council, Luton South's Labour MP Gavin Shuker has been at the count in Peterborough, where the Conservatives were holding on to their seats.

Gavin Shuker
Labour Party

He said: "In the places where we're making gains it's against the Greens and Liberals.

"We need to make gains against the Conservatives."

BreakingLabour hold Cambridge

Labour have retained control of Cambridge City Council..

BreakingLabour hold Norwich

Labour have retained control of Norwich City Council.

More UKIP gains in Norfolk

UKIP is making progress at Great Yamouth Borough Council, where no single party has overall control, but the Conservatives are running the administration.

View more on twitter

Parties discuss control of Thurrock Council

Charlotte Rose

BBC Essex

The future control of Thurrock Council is being looked at following the major gains by UKIP and the Labour losses.

UKIP and the Conservatives both have 17 seats, while Labour, which had been the largest party, now only has 14 seats. There is also one independent.

The council remains an authority where no one party has overall control.

Somebody? Anybody? Daventry returning officer seeks an audience

BBC Northampton political reporter Sam Read is among them.

View more on twitter

Watch: The moment Labour councillor held Yarmouth seat

Results are coming in thick and fast now.

This is the moment when Michael Jeal retained Nelson Ward for Labour in Great Yarmouth in Norfolk.

Election 2016: Michael Jeal retains Nelson Ward in Great Yarmouth for Labour