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Conservatives make gains in West Berkshire

Blue is the colour in West Berkshire as the Conservatives gain seats on the district council

THE Conservatives have snatched Thatcham North and Thatcham South from the Liberal Democrats and look to have regained control of West Berkshire Council.

Reflecting on the loss of the seats, the leader of the Liberal Democrats Jeff Brooks (Thatcham West), who retained his seat in Thatcham West, said: "Given the national picture being so dire across the country we are pleased to have been able to have kept a workable majority to form a working opposition and will still be able to fight the Tories.

"We will represent the people who voted for us with vigour, and be assured there is still much more to come."

it has not been the disaster many Liberal Democrats feared, but the leader of the council Graham Jones (Con, Lambourn), who retained his seat comfortably, said it was still a significant gain for his party.

"Thatcham is the big one for us, there was a big turnaround and it looks like we have won the popular vote in Thatcham for the first time in our history," he said.

"We are still waiting for a few but it looks like we could have five out of eight councillors in Thatcham, which would have been unthinkable four years ago."

Sheila Ellison and John Horton are the Conservatives who have taken the Thatcham North seats, with Dominic Boeck and Roger Croft taking Thatcham South.

As of 5pm, Labour, UKIP, the Apolitical Democrats and independent candidates have not won a single seat.

The Conservatives have 32 seats, the Liberal Democrats have 10, with 10 still to be declared.

Five wards still to be declared; Thatcham Central, Birch Copse, Calcot, and Northcroft.

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