"An industrial and market town close to the English border,Wrexham has fared better than many similar communities in successfully diversifying its economy in the wake of the rundown of the areaís traditional employers, steel and coal. As north Walesís biggest town, it has developed as an important regional centre for north east Wales. It has been traditional Labour territory, although not with the massive majorities characteristic of south Wales industrial seats. At the 1997 General Election, Labourís John Marek, the MP since 1983, retained the Westminster seat with a comfortable majority of 11,762. The Conservatives were second with 8,688 votes, the Liberal Democrats third with 4,833, and Plaid Cymru were fifth with 1,170, trailing the Referendum Party on 1,195. The electors of the Wrexham county borough council area voted No in the 1997 devolution referendum by a majority of 3,875. Wrexham council is in Labour control, with Labour holding 34 of the 52 seats. The Radical Party, a mainly Liberal Democrat group, hold 9, the Conservative and Independent group 5, Independent Labour 2, and Non-Aligned 2."