HEREFORDSHIRE parties with a strong pro-European Union stance saw huge gains in last week’s local council elections.

The Green Party, which backed staying in the EU during the 2016 referendum campaign, saw their number of councillors surge from four to seven.

On a national level, they say they will ‘demand that the terms of the final Brexit deal are closely scrutinised’.

A party spokesperson said: “We do not accept that either a ‘hard’ Brexit or an exit from the EU without a deal is in the interests of the British people.

“We will be actively campaigning to safeguard jobs, uphold basic rights and put environmental protection at the heart of any future trade deals.”

The number of Liberal Democrat councillors at Shirehall also rose steeply, tripling from two up to six.

The Lib Dems believe that the UK is better off in the EU and are fighting for an exit from Brexit.

Councillor Terry James, their group leader on Herefordshire Council, said he did not know how much of an effect the handling of Brexit at Westminster had on his party’s results.

“Whatever your stance on Brexit I think people are sick of the whole issue,” he said.

“They are fed up to the back teeth of it.”

All nine of UKIP’s candidates failed to win a seat on the council.

In 2016, 59.2% of county voters voted to leave the EU while 40.8% wanted to remain.

Herefordshire was marginally more in favour of Brexit than the majority of the UK.

The national vote saw 51.9% voters for the UK to leave the EU, and 48.1% wishing to remain.