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Incumbent mayors hold on despite some closely fought contests

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All incumbent elected mayors who sought re-election held onto their positions in the six mayoral contests held last week.

At Bedford BC Liberal Democrat Dave Hodgson bucked the national trend which saw his party lose council and parliamentary seats elsewhere. After second preferences were taken into account, he secured 35,302 votes to retain the office while the Conservative challenger Jas Parmar received 26,513 votes.

Sir Peter Soulsby held Leicester City Council’s mayoralty for Labour, winning 71,533 votes. His nearest challenger, the Tory Paul Bremner, gained only 24,327 votes, meaning no second round of voting was required.

Conservative Gordon Oliver was reelected on Torbay with a majority of just 621 over second placed Liberal Democrat candidate Dennis Brewer, after a second round.

Labour gained a mayoralty in Middlesbrough where Labour’s Dave Budd beat Independent Andy Preston by less than 300 votes when second preference votes were taken into account. He replaces the Independent Ray Mallon who stood down.

In Mansfield independent Kate Allsop won but just 42 votes separated her from Labour’s Martin Lee after the first round. Once second preferences were taken into account final scores were 22,600-19,720. Another Independent Tony Egginton had previously been Mansfield’s mayor but he did not seek re-election.

The sixth contest saw residents in Copeland BC elect a mayor for the first time. Independent candidate Mike Starkie beat Labour challenger Steve Gibbons by 974 votes. Labour is still in control of the council.

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