Voters in East Riding of Yorkshire have rejected the idea of joining Hull City Council by a massive majority.
East Riding called the poll in 12 parishes after Hull launched an independent commission to decide whether its boundary should be extended to include them.
The result showed 51,312 voting to stay in East Riding and only 1,887 voting for Hull, a 96.5% vote in favour of keeping the current boundary on a 75.3% turnout.
Hull had argued that it needed a larger area because most of its hinterland lies outside the city boundary, putting it at an economic disadvantage.
But the campaign rapidly descended into angry exchanges between the two councils.
Hull leader Stephen Brady (Lab) said in a statement: “I am not surprised by the poll results, bearing in mind the questions that were asked.
“There are currently no proposals to change Hull’s boundary, yet the East Riding has spent a considerable amount of money asking residents the wrong questions at the wrong time.”
He said both councils needed to work together to bring jobs and investment to the area, given the growth of the concept of combined authorities.
In a speech delivered at the referendum count, East Riding leader Stephen Parnaby (Con) urged Hull to “shut up” about the boundary issue, and ridiculed Cllr Brady and his deputy Daren Hale (Lab) for having been elected on turnouts of less than a third of that in the referendum.
“Let us hope the result of this referendum puts a stop to the city council’s hostile takeover of the East Riding and land grab,” Cllr Parnaby said.