There was a message of congratulations from party leader Tim Farron as Liberal Democrat Steve Greenall won election to Huntingdonshire District Council last night.

Councillor Greenall scooped 844 votes – some 45 per cent - to win in the Huntingdon East ward – comfortably ahead of nearest challenger, Conservative Tom Fletcher, who came in second with 596 votes.

A total of 1,874 votes were cast.

After the news was announced last night, MP and Lib Dem leader Tim Farron sent his congratulations on Twitter, posting “Well deserved! Many congratulations!”

Councillor Greenall said: “To win this time around, after the disappointment of 18 months ago, is humbling, uplifting and exhilarating and I can’t wait to get on with doing the job I love.

“I would like to pay testament to the people who were out with my campaign, when it was cold, dark and wet, they were tremendous. This is a win for them and a win for the people of Huntingdon East.

“I normally only get two messages a day on Twitter but when I got up on Friday morning, there were 48 messages on my feed, it’s been amazing.”

The seat was formerly held by UKIP’s Andrew Hardy – who resigned from the council in October on grounds of ill health, triggering a by-election.

There was to be no repeat for UKIP this time around, though, as their candidate, Martin Cohen, came in a distant third, polling 293 votes – 15.6 per cent of the vote.

Labour’s Duncan Williams came in fourth, with 141 votes.

Turnout for the vote was 26.4 per cent and there were three spoiled ballot papers.