Labour takes Carlisle City Council

Joe Hendry
Image caption Labour's Joe Hendry said the result marked a new beginning for Carlisle

Labour have gained control of Carlisle City Council.

The party took two seats from the Conservatives and two from Lib Dems, giving it a total of 27.

The Tories now have 20 councillors, the Lib Dems two, there are two Independents, and one vacant post.

In South Lakeland, Labour and the Lib Dems gained two seats each, with the Conservatives losing four of their seats. The council is therefore still held by the Lib Dems.

The Lib Dems now hold 34 seats, the Conservatives 14 and Labour three.

Carlisle was heavily targeted by both Labour and the Conservatives, with Ed Miliband showing up on the local election launch tour and David Cameron also paying a high-profile visit.

Joe Hendry, the council's Labour leader, described the result as a new beginning for Carlisle.

"This is the first time in 13 years that any political party has had a clear majority," he said.

"We intend to do good things with it.

"The first thing to do is clean up the city, but also make sure there are jobs, to get investment and a consensus of what kind of place this is going to be in 10 years time, and work towards that."

'Disastrous night'

Carlisle's Conservative MP, John Stevenson, said: "We're very disappointed.

"We've lost two good councillors as well.

"In our own vote there may be a little bit of apathy, but in some cases I think there was a good turnout by Conservatives, and that's something we have to look to in the future."

Lib Dem Trevor Allison said: "Obviously it was a disastrous night for us.

"It wasn't unexpected, it turned out exactly as we thought it would, not just for ourselves but the Conservatives as well."

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