GALLERY: No purple tide in East Cambridgeshire as Tories buck national trend

Fred Brown, far left, looks on as counting in the Littleport ward takes place

Fred Brown, far left, looks on as counting in the Littleport ward takes place - Credit: Archant

VOTERS in East Cambridgeshire may not have been swept along with the purple UKIP tide at Thursday’s elections but there were still plenty of surprises.

Counting took place at the Ross Peers Sports Centre in Soham

Counting took place at the Ross Peers Sports Centre in Soham - Credit: Archant

Every election has its casualties and the biggest news of this year’s Cambridgeshire County Council elections in East Cambridgeshire was the unseating of Conservative Fred Brown, who was usurped by Daniel Devine of UKIP.

Cllr David Brown

Cllr David Brown - Credit: Archant

In 2009, Brown took the seat from the Liberal Democrats with a total vote of 926 but, four years on, he polled 389 votes to Devine’s 475. The turnout in Littleport was a worrying low 20.3 per cent.

UKIP's Michael Banahan

UKIP's Michael Banahan - Credit: Archant

Mr Brown’s loss comes two years after he lost his Littleport seat in district council elections.

Liberal Democrat Nigel Bell lost his grip on the Ely North and East seat as he was replaced by veteran city and district councillor Mike Rouse. Cllr Rouse polled 39.8 per cent of the vote, with Bell in second with a 22.4 per cent share.

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UKIP had been expected to pick up Tory votes in Ely South and West but Jeremy Tyrell managed only 441 votes. The seat was won by Conservative Anna Bailey, who took the seat from Sue Austen by 973 votes to 712.

Turnout in Ely South and West was the best in the district, with an impressive 37.43 per cent turning out to vote. The average turnout overall in East Cambridgeshire was 28.2 per cent.

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Elsewhere, there were comfortable victories for Philip Read in Sutton, with a majority of some 275, while David Brown fended off both the Liberal Democrat and UKIP candidates to retain his Burwell seat, with 46 per cent of the vote.

The Haddenham ward was expectedly to be closely fought between the Tories and the Liberal Democrats but it turned out to be a comfortable win for Conservative Bill Hunt, who romped home with 49.3 per cent of the vote. UKIP’s Mark Higginson was in second place with 20.5 per cent.

Conservative duo James Palmer and Joshua Schumann both won election to the county council, holding the seats for the party, albeit Schumann taking over from John Powley, who opted to stand down.

The duo’s nearest contenders were Dick Bourne and John Howlett of UKIP who polled 1,364 and 1,198 votes respectively to Palmer’s 2,064 and Schumann’s 1,623.

In Woodditton, Conservative Matthew Shuter retained his seat with a whopping 60.2 per cent of the vote.

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