THE Basingstoke Conservative group has lose voting control of the borough council following the outcome of a by-election.

Independent candidate Chris Tomblin has today (Friday) been elected to the seat of Bramley and Sherfield. 

Mr Tomblin won 57 per cent of the vote, with Conservative candidate Angus Groom finishinfg second with 32 per cent, and Joyce Bowyer, also an independent, finishing third with 11 per cent. 

This represents a loss of 24 per cent for the Conservatives, who no longer have a voting majority in the council.

Speaking to the Gazette immediately after being elected, Mr Tomblin said he was "relieved".

"It was good and I think it reflects the views well of the community and turnout was I guess what you'd expect, it wasn't massive but it was not small.

"I'm very pleased and I think that Bramley and Sherfield have got what, hopefully, they deserved."  

As previously reported in the Gazette, when Cllr Terri Reid stepped away from her political party amidst frustrations with the administration, it meant that the Conservatives no longer have a voting majority on the borough council, holding 30 of the available 60 seats.

After former councillor and Conservative member Venetia Rowland, vacated her seat in the ward of Bramley and Sherfield, it has put the balance of the borough council’s make up in the air.