Tories ‘paid the price’ in Cambs County elections, says interim leader

Cambridgeshire County Council Election count, at One Leisure, St Neots, Mac McGuire

Cambridgeshire County Council Election count, at One Leisure, St Neots, Mac McGuire - Credit: Archant

CONSERVATIVE candidates ‘paid the price for national politics’ in yesterday’s elections according to interim leader of Cambridgeshire County Council Councillor Mac McGuire.

His comments came after today’s count saw UKIP gain 10 seats at Shire Hall and leader of CCC Nick Clarke loose his seat in Fulbourn to Liberal Democrat John Williams.

Cllr McGuire, who held his conservative seat in Norman Cross while UKIP took the other seat in the ward from the Tories, will take over from Mr Clarke until a meeting next Friday which will determine the new leader.

He said that UKIP’s success was due to voters expressing ‘anger’ at national politics.

“I don’t think there’s any arguments that it’s a national issue not a local issue, they’ve been riding a wave and we’re paying the price for national politics,” he said.

“It’s disappointing, we have seen the loses of extremely good councillors, having said that we have also got feedback that from other parts of the county where we have had some significant gains.

As well as giving up seats to UKIP Cllr McGuire also commented that the margin of victory for some of the Conservative candidates was very slim and that the new make up of the council would likely require them to work more closely with other parties.

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He said: ”Those that got in, some of us got in by the skin of our teeth in seats that we won comfortably last time.”

“Until I see the overall results it’s difficult to comment. We’re just grateful it wasn’t a landslide victory for UKIP.

“We are going to have to work with the others and we are going to have to be friendly.”