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Local Elections 2019: Labour seize control of Gravesham

PUBLISHED: 17:56 03 May 2019

Gravesham Borough Council Civic Centre. Picture: STEVE POSTON

Gravesham Borough Council Civic Centre. Picture: STEVE POSTON

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Labour swept to power in Gravesham today - historically an important bellwether seat for general elections - as the Conservative Party suffered further embarrassment at the polls.

With a poor turnout of 30.99 per cent, Labour took 24 seats, Conservatives 18 seats and Independents two seats as the local election count ended.

Earlier in the day the Conservatives held Dartford Borough Council, with Labour and Residents' Association candidates making some gains.

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Both Labour and Conservatives suffered heavy losses around the country with voters showing their frustration over the Brexit debacle.

The Liberal Democrats where the main winners picking up hundreds of seats.

Bellwether seats are basically areas which indicate a trend in voting during general elections. But with Dartford (Conservatives) and Gravesham (now Labour) both considered bellwether constituencies the national political landscape would be more confused than ever if a general election was called.

Dartford has reflected the overall result in every general election since 1964. Gravesham (previously Gravesend) has voted for the winning party – or the one with the largest share of the vote – since World War One, except in 2005 when then Conservative candidate Adam Holloway ousted Labour's Chris Pond MP but Labour won nationally.

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