Sea of red as Labour rule

County Elections, Mansfield Civic Centre 2013.''Parry Tsimbiridis, North Mansfield Councillor, Joyce Bosnjak, North Mansfield Councillor
County Elections, Mansfield Civic Centre 2013.''Parry Tsimbiridis, North Mansfield Councillor, Joyce Bosnjak, North Mansfield Councillor
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LABOUR party officials are celebrating a return to power after the party regained control of Nottinghamshire in Thursday’s county council elections.

The party also enjoyed success in Mansfield and came away with seven out of the nine seats up for grabs in the district.

Mansfield Independent Forum took the other two.

But voter turnout gave concern again this year with 22,556 people recording their vote, giving an overall turnout of 27.63 per cent.

In North Mansfield Ward sitting councillors Joyce Bosnjak and Parry Tsimbiridis held on to their seats with 2,443 and 2,008 votes respectively.

Labour’s Alan Bell and Colleen Harwood took control of East Mansfield, with 1,801 and 1,631 votes respectively.

In Mansfield West the Conservatives’ Victor Bobo and the Nottinghamshire Independents’ candidate June Stendall were ousted by Labour’s Darren Langton and Diana Meale.

Both of Mansfield South’s seats are now Independent Forum-controlled after Steve Garner held on to his seat and Andy Sissons ousted Labour’s Chris Winterton with 2,940 and 2,543 votes.

Speaking after the election count at Mansfield’s Civic Centre on Friday Mansfield Labour Group leader Martin Lee said he had hoped for two seats, but to achieve seven was ‘fantastic.’

He added; “I think it’s the end of the line for the Independents in Mansfield.”

But Coun Steve Garner, Mansfield Independent Forum’s sitting candidate for Mansfield South, proved otherwise with his successful re-election.

“It was never in any doubt,” he said after his re-election was confirmed. “My fellow running partner and I know a lot of people came out just to vote for us.

“That was always enough to get me across the vote line. Steve Garner is the only councillor you ever see on South Mansfield. I just work for my people in the ward and think I always will.”

But it was the end of the road for West Mansfield’s Nottinghamshire Independents incumbent June Stendall, who is now taking a step back after 10 years as a district and county councillor.

She said: “It is down to a few factors, but one of them is voter apathy - people say councillors never contact them and it is always just before the election they get in touch.

“But I have kept newsletters updated and always kept in touch over the last four years.”

“One thing noticeable at the count was for the first time people did not know what they were voting for - people were selecting UKIP and Labour on the same paper.”