LOCAL ELECTIONS 2018: Labour pleased to add two Daventry District Council members but disappointed at narrowly missing out on third

Ken Ritchie
Ken Ritchie

Labour councillor Ken Ritchie says he is pleased his party was able to add two new councillors to Daventry District Council in yesterday's local elections.

The Labour Party gained two wards, one in the hard-fought Abbey North ward where portfolio holder Colin Poole lost out to 2017 Parliamentary candidate Aiden Ramsey and the other in Drayton - both were UKIP’s only two seats on the council.

They could have added increased their membership on the council to six but narrowly missed out on victory by 28 votes.

"We are delighted to have got Andrew Dabbs in Drayton and to get Aiden Ramsey in in Abbey North," said Councillor Ritchie.

"Andrew fought a very well fought campaign in Drayton. He's the sort of guy that could talk to as many people as he can, and I think he won respect for that.

"We expected to win in Abbey North - two years ago I had won there - but with a very strong challenge, not just from the Conservatives but from the Liberal Democrats, it was a difficult ward to predict.

"We had an excellent candidate in Aiden Ramsey. Somebody who is well known for all the work that he's done in Daventry in the past and I'm absolutely delighted that he won, and it wasn't just winning narrowly, he won quite comfortably."

Labour came close to winning a third seat, in Hill ward, but their candidate Katie Thurston came second behind Conservative Peter Matten by 28 votes, despite having spent the final weeks of the campaign abroad on her honeymoon.

"We were disappointed not to win in Hill we had a fantastic candidate, she came so very close to winning that seat and it must be years and years and years since Labour had councillors in Hill ward," said Councillor Ritchie.

"The fact that she got within 28 votes and Katie was fighting an election at possibly the worst time for her. She got married in April and did spend a large part of the final weeks of the campaign out of the country on her honeymoon.

"Katie has got a great future. She was an amazing candidate."