New councillors celebrate success

Sunderland City Council leader Paul Watson celebrates with new Washington Labour party councillors George Thompson and Fiona Miller.
Sunderland City Council leader Paul Watson celebrates with new Washington Labour party councillors George Thompson and Fiona Miller.
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BEAMING from ear to ear, new Labour councillors have been speaking about their victory at this week’s local elections.

Magistrate Lynda Scanlan clinched a resounding win in Millfield for Labour.

Mrs Scanlan, 57, racked up 1,363 votes, 778 ahead of her nearest rival, Lib Dem candidate Paul Edgeworth.

She said: “It was a very marginal seat in Millfield and we certainly knew we had a fight on our hands against the Lib Dems.

“A win of nearly 800 votes is fantastic and is a message to this Government that people will not put up with all the policies they are implementing and that Labour are on the way back up.”

Fellow new councillor Fiona Miller, 49, took the Washington East seat from the Conservatives, winning 1,935 votes against Tory candidate Ian Cuthbert’s 1,201.

She said: “I’ve been on the road for five weeks flat, knocking on doors and asking people what they want.

“A lot of local and national issues come into play.

“I hope it tells Cameron that we are here and we want him out.”

Retired policeman George Thompson was another candidate who saw a Washington ward swing from the Tories to Labour.

The 53-year-old clinched 2,126 votes in Washington South, a resounding 1,024 ahead of Conservative candidate Martin Talbot.

He said: “I’m very pleased. The feedback on the doorsteps was against the Government.

“People here are being really hit, not just financially, but losing their jobs.

“It is really taking effect against the people in my ward, which has been reflected in the votes.

“On the doorsteps quite a lot of people also wanted a conversation about AV (the Alternative Vote) and there was a general condemnation of Government policy.”

In St Chad’s, Labour councillor Stuart Porthouse won revenge by booting out Tory Michael Dixon, the man who defeated him in the same seat in the 2007 council elections.