Full voting figures    Votes
 Conservative  Hilary Rose Hibbert-Biles  1666
 Green  Brian Alexander Luney  233
 Labour  Robert Llewelyn Evans  1428
 Liberal Democrat  Derek Adrian Brown  643


Blue is the colour of Oxfordshire County Council after the Tories won a landslide victory to seize control of the authority in yesterday's elections, writes Local Government Reporter Giles Sheldrick. The party won 43 of a possible 74 seats and now have a commanding majority - the first time County Hall has been under the control of a single political group for 20 years. Conservative county council leader Keith Mitchell and his party now control the decision-making executive and will be able to push through a series of radical reforms, including free evening parking in Oxford and a promise "to end the war on the motorist". The Tories have pledged to introduce a pilot scheme giving motorists the run of the streets by offering free on-street parking in the city from Monday to Saturday and all day Sunday. Mr Mitchell told the Oxford Mail: "For the first time in 20 years people will know who is running the county council - and the buck stops with us. "We have promised to listen to what people want and we will keep to that promise because we will be held to account for what we achieve." Yesterday's election results signalled a sea change in the political landscape of County Hall, with Labour watching helplessly as key seats - and well-known councillors - wilted against the Tory charge. Before the election, Labour held 24 seats. They now have nine. Among the front-line Labour councillors to bite the dust were Mick McAndrews, deputy leader Robert Evans and Charlbury's Brian Hodgson.


David Cameron almost doubled the Conservative majority in Witney today, with the Liberal Democrats taking second place from Labour for the first time since the 1980s. With a majority of more than 14,000, Mr Cameron MP has taken a lead closer to that enjoyed by former Foreign Secretary Douglas Hurd in the traditionally Conservative seat of Witney.

Liberal Democrat Liz Leffman hailed her party's increase in the vote as a breakthrough, and said she hoped to be competing again at the next General Election. Tony Gray, standing for Labour, said he also hoped to stand again and see a return of "progressive politics" to west Oxfordshire. After an earlier than expected result, UKIP candidate Paul Wesson promised the party would be back to campaign on the European Referendum. Mr Wesson came last, with a small increase on 2001. He was narrowly beaten by Green candidate Richard Dossett-Davies, who presented Mr Cameron with a book called Green Alternatives to Globalisation.

Mr Cameron, whose first engagement as returning MP will be speaking to Finstock Parish Council, said: "I want to say thank you to everyone who took part in the election. It was very amicable and a clean fight. But I'd also like to say thank you to the people of west Oxfordshire for supporting me, and I will do my best not to let them down. "We worked hard for the support. I've tried to be a hard-working MP for the last four-and-a-half years, it's a good job and one I love, and I've tried to do it on behalf of everyone in west Oxfordshire, not just the people who voted for me." He said protecting local services would be one of the challenges facing him over the next four years, and said the effects of changes to out-of-hours GPs surgeries was an issue he had encountered on doorsteps and intended to pursue. Asked about his prospects as the next leader of the party -- a question he is increasingly asked -- Mr Cameron said: "It's not on my horizon at all, I think Michael Howard did a very good job and I want him to continue as leader."

Liberal Democrat Liz Leffman thanked her supporters and said: "We'll go home feeling very pleased indeed. To break through after 20 years to second place is a major step forward for us, and that's despite the fact that we've got a very good MP in David Cameron. It's down to hard work and a very strong national campaign, and the plan is to be back in four years time."

Labour's Tony Gray said: "It was a very tough campaign, but it's been great in terms of the country. Although progressive politics may have taken a big step back in west Oxfordshire, as a country we're moving forward."


Conservative Green Labour Liberal Democrat UKIP
26,571 1,682 11,845 12,415 1,356
+4.3% +0.9% -6.8% +2.7% +0.9%