Page last updated at 03:35 GMT, Friday, 2 May 2008 04:35 UK

Tories take control in Maidstone

Polling station
The Conservatives increased their total seats in Maidstone from 27 to 29

The Conservative Party has won the local election in Maidstone after 25 years of a hung council.

The party has also retained control in Tunbridge Wells and Swale in Thursday's local elections.

In Tunbridge Wells they increased their majority by three seats to 44, leaving four seats for the Liberal Democrats.

Swale Borough Council has also seen an increased Tory majority with one less seat for Labour, Liberal Democrats and independent members.

Maidstone's Labour leader Morel D'Souza lost his seat in the Fant ward to Conservative candidate Stephen Paine.

I fear it's the end of the Labour Party in Maidstone
Councillor Eric Hotson, Maidstone Conservatives

In a close race, the Conservative Party increased their total seats in Maidstone Borough Council from 27 to 29.

The Liberal Democrats, who now have 21 councillors, lost one seat while Labour's representation dropped from three to one. There are also five independents on the council, up from four.

Councillor Eric Hotson, who has been leader of the Conservative party in Maidstone for 10 years, said he was delighted with the result.

"I'm over the moon," he said. "I fear it's the end of the Labour Party in Maidstone. It will be very difficult for them to come back now."

He said his party had proved their worth in a "trial run" two years ago when they had formed a minority administration.

"I think we've shown honesty throughout the campaign," he added.

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  Councillors Councils
Party +/- Total +/- Total
CON 257 3155 12 65
LAB -334 2365 -9 18
LD 33 1804 1 12
PC 31 205 -1 0
OTH 10 898 0 0
NOC - - -3 64
159 of 159 councils declared.

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Results in more detail

London Mayoral results
Overall results
Name Party Votes
Johnson CON 1,168,738
Livingstone LAB 1,028,966
Paddick LD 878,097
Berry GRN 409,101

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Results in more detail

London Assembly Results
Overall results
Party Constit' Top-up Total seats
CON 8 3 11
LAB 6 2 8
LD 0 3 3
GRN 0 2 2
BNP 0 1 1

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Results in more detail



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