Bromyard's former mayoress Clare Davies has been elected as county councillor for the Bromyard West ward, following yesterday's by-election.

Her tally of 315 votes was more than double that for the second-placed candidate, Nick Ferguson, who polled 152.

Third was "Local Conservatives" candidate Mark Franklin, with 100 votes. Turnout was on the low side, at 23.5 per cent.

Hereford Times: Coun Davies of the True Independents signs her Declaration of Acceptance of the role of Herefordshire CouncillorCoun Davies of the True Independents signs her Declaration of Acceptance of the role of Herefordshire Councillor

The result changes the voting arithmetic on Herefordshire Council, which is controlled by a minority Independents for Herefordshire (IfH) / Greens coalition.

The election arose following the resignation at the start of the year of IfH councillor Alan Seldon.

Nick Ferguson had the backing of the IfH / Greens coalition, and his defeat leaves IfH with 18 councillors, the Greens with seven.

Coun Davies, a serving town councillor, stood for the True Independents, a separate, currently five-strong group in the council.

The county has 53 councillors in total, leaving the Coalition requiring two votes from other councillors for a majority.

IfH group leader Coun John Harrington said: "A good result for Clare, who is very well known and liked in Bromyard, and we wish her every success in her new role."

He denied that the result presents problems for the Coalition, saying that being a minority administration "hasn’t prevented us from working effectively".

"Having to convince fellow councillors, opposition or otherwise, of the arguments for decisions we do make at Full Council has been good for us and local democracy," he said.

The Conservative group on the council, who had sought to capitalise on their opposition to the latest council tax rise in the county, said it was "disappointed" in the result.

It said in a statement: "We would like to thank all of those who engaged with us during the campaign.

"Your voice has been heard and the Conservatives will continue to challenge and hold to account the Green Coalition currently in control of Herefordshire Council.

"We look forward the all-out Herefordshire Council elections in May 2023."

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