County council elections: Electorate stays loyal

The electorate in Eastwood and Kimberley stayed loyal to their long serving councillors in this week’s county council elections.

Candidates fought off any challengers from Labour and UKIP, keeping the area Lib Dem and Tory-led.

Keith Longdon (Lib Dem) was voted into the Eastwood ward for the second term, taking 1,234 of the votes.

Sue Bagshaw (Lab) followed behind with 834 votes.

Cllr Longdon said his second victory felt ‘marvellous’.

“It’s absolutely marvellous. I want to say thanks to all the residents that put their trust in me to carry on the fight for Eastwood.

“I’m determined to continue the fight to improve our roads, and I’m sure there are other things that will come up in the next four years that I’ll give 110 per cent to,” he added.

In Nuthall Philip Owen (Con) beat off competition from Dawn Elliott (Lab) and Simon Rood (UKIP) with a majority of 700 votes.

He has been on the Nuthall ward for eight years, and is just about to embark his third term.

He said: “I want to continue with what I have been doing because obviously it’s a recipe for success. I got a majority of 700 and increased my share of the votes so it’s great news.

“My work has obviously been appreciated by the electorate and I am very grateful that people have put faith in me yet again.”

In Kimberley, Ken Rigby (Lib Dem) took an enormous 1,492 of the votes, also securing him a third term in office.

He was followed behind by Helena Lings (Labour) who got 787 votes.

Cllr Rigby - who secured a £1m investment for improvements to Kimberley town centre a couple of years ago – said he hoped the victory was ‘because his hard work had been recognised’.

He said: “I really hope it’s because my hard work has been recognised. I brought £1m into Kimberley and about £400,000 into my three villages,” he said.

“My case files are bulging so it’s sleeves up and back to work next week!” he added.

In Beauvvale John Handley (Con) replaced David Taylor (Con), who had been the ward councillor for 24 years.

Cllr Taylor could not stand due to illness, and Cllr Handley won the vote with 1,050 votes, closely followed behind by Edward Llewellyn-Jones (Lab) who secured 902 votes.

Cllr Handley said Cllr Taylor would be ‘a hard act to follow’.

“David has been on on this ward for 24 years and in politics for 50 years so will be a hard act to follow.

“With UKIP polling well nationally it was going to be a difficult one to call, but luckily it came out well.”

The Greasley parish councillor said he wanted to work on ‘developing community identification’.