THE Tories are back in Huddersfield.
Conservative Tony Brice yesterday re-took the Lindley seat he lost to the Lib Dems last year.
The 67-year-old from Highfields said: “It feels absolutely brilliant to have won, we’ve worked continuously since the beginning of the year.”
Mr Brice lost his seat on Kirklees Council in 2010, leaving Huddersfield without any Conservative councillors.
But he surged back yesterday, unseating Lib Dem Tony Woodhead by 700 votes.
Mr Brice – seen at the count – said possible development on Lindley Moor had been a big issue on the doorsteps.
“It’s an emotive subject,” he said.
“The Liberals put out a lot of innuendo about Lindley Moor last year, they accused the Conservatives of supporting development on the moor.”
Mr Brice was among 10 new faces on Kirklees following yesterday’s results.
Marsh woman Judith Hughes said she felt “overwhelmed” after romping home for Labour in Greenhead.
The party also gained a seat in Dalton, where Cliff Preest unseated Lib Dem Roger Battye.
The 63-year-old from Kings Mill Lane said: “I feel very pleased with the result.
“Many people told me on the doorsteps that they were concerned about the broken promises which have been broken on tuition fees and the NHS.”
Labour’s Hilary Richards is also new to Kirklees after unseating Robert Iredale in Golcar.
The Lib Dem said: “I feel upset and disappointed. We couldn’t have done any more locally but we couldn’t stand against the national swing.”
There was better news for the Lib Dems in Almondbury, where James Blanchard defended the seat vacated by John Smithson.
The 34-year-old from Somerset Road said: “I’m relieved to have won and it’s a great honour for the people to have put their faith in me.”
Marsden woman Donna Bellamy was also pleased, after taking Colne Valley for the Conservatives.
The 40-year-old said: “I’m a bit gob-smacked.
“I think the Local Development Framework was the big issue because the whole consultation has been a sham.”
In Dewsbury West, Darren O’Donovan took the seat for Labour.
The 35-year-old said: “We expected it to be quite close all the way obviously because the Lib Dems were the sitting party in the area.
“In these elections generally Labour have done really well and we’re showing people that we are the party to represent people especially with the cuts and tough challenges ahead.”
In Dewsbury East Clr Eric Firth held his seat for Labour. The Deputy Mayor of Kirklees is due to become Mayor on May 25.
Clr Firth said: “I’m absolutely delighted and I look forward to the forthcoming year.”