AS the dust settles on a dramatic night of local elections in Welwyn Hatfield, we take a look back at the people who made this year’s headlines.
Undoubtedly the star of the show was Sandra Kyriakides, the 67-year-old grandmother who become the first person to be elected a Welwyn Hatfield councillor as an independent candidate.
The Codicote Road resident pipped Conservative Paul Smith to the Welwyn West seat by just 49 votes, following a recount.
Cllr Kyriakides, a former Tory herself, decided to stand alone after becoming fed up with the Conservative-led council “pushing around” the village, in particular regarding the parking charges row.
Elsewhere, it was a good night for Labour, as they gained two more seats from the ruling Conservative party.
Ben Yetts and Cathy Watson replace Conservatives Howard Hughes and Nick Atkinson as the representatives for Haldens and Hatfield West respectively.
The Tories remain in overall control of the council however, holding on to eight seats, the most won by any party on the night. Duncan Bell is the party’s only new councillor, after winning Hatfield Villages.
The Liberal Democrats managed to buck the national trend by holding on to their one seat up for grabs last night. Cllr Malcolm Cowan held on in Peartree - but only just.
He defeated Labour candidate Mark Biddle by just five votes, winning with 474 votes to 469.
The results mean Welwyn Hatfield Council is now comprised of 34 Conservatives, 11 Labour councillors, two Liberal Democrats and one independent.
For further news, interviews, statistics and analysis from last night’s elections, see next week’s Welwyn Hatfield Times.