CLLR Lynn Riley is hoping for a better working relationship with Labour members after Cheshire West and Chester Council slipped into no overall control.

The leader of CWAC’s Conservative group endured a difficult election count on Friday as her party ended the day with seven fewer councillors on the authority than before the vote.

And the Frodsham councillor suggested the chaos in Westminster over Brexit played a key role in stopping her party’s candidates from taking control of CWAC.

She told the Guardian: “We are disappointed not to be in control of CWAC. We certainly believe that under Conservative control the council would be run differently to how it has been run for the last four years.

“We do feel obviously that the result that we have had here in Ellesmere Port tonight reflects more on national politics than some of the local issues that we have been trying to bring to the fore through the whole campaign we have been running.


Labour loses CWAC majority by just one seat

“I’m disappointed to have lost so many valued colleagues – hard-working councillors who have given years of dedication to their communities.

“It’s a bittersweet moment – it’s great that we have got a lot of new members of the team joining us, some fresh talent, fresh perspective, fresh vigour and motivation, but very sad to have lost some valued colleagues along the way.”

The Conservative group is the second-largest on CWAC, behind the 35-strong Labour group, which ended one councillor short of overall control.

CWAC will also have four independent members, two Liberal Democrats and its first ever Green Party councillor.

Asked how the Conservatives would work together with the other political groups in the hung council, Cllr Riley said: “I think this is the challenge for the principal group on the council.

“We had a difficult four years where there was one seat in overall control, where effectively the council did not play to its strengths.


Northwich and Winsford's local election turnout

“I hope that the mix of councillors, parties, the independents, will enforce that agenda and we will be a better, stronger, more inclusive council in the next four years than we have been for the last four years.”

The Conservatives have taken a hammering across the country in the local elections.

The party has lost more than 1,300 councillors across the country, while its previously vice-like grip of neighbouring Cheshire East Council has also come to an end.

Cllr Riley said: “I would suggest that the national party takes a long, hard look at what the CWAC Conservatives have achieved.

“We have done is put our communities first, we’ve very much worked on local issues that matter to local people.

“And we all have to remember very much that all politics ultimately is local – politics is about getting things done to improve people’s lives and improve our communities.”


Labour leader upbeat despite losing council control