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DRAMATIC GAIN FROM LIB DEMS AUGURS WELL FOR 1998: TORIES

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The Conservatives have scored what they describe as a key local government by-election gain from the Liberal Democr...
The Conservatives have scored what they describe as a key local government by-election gain from the Liberal Democrats in Torbay, the most marginal constituency in the country. The Conservative share of the vote increased from 33% to 45%, while the Liberal Democrat share fell by 2.5% and the Labour share by 5.5%.

Christopher Chope, vice chairman of the Conservative party with responsibility for local government, said on Friday:

'This excellent result augurs well for a local government campaign in 1998. The Torbay seat was last fought on the same day as the 1997 general election so the result is a direct comparison and shows that support for the Conservatives is now rising significantly at the expense of both Labour and the Liberal Democrats.

'The only other local government by-election last night in England showed the Conservatives more than doubling their share of the vote in a ward in Sevenoaks compared with 1995.'
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