Deal expected on council control

LABOUR is poised to take control of Northumberland County Council, with support from Independents.

Elections earlier this month left no Party in overall control of the authority, with Labour falling just short with 32 out of the 67 seats available.

The Conservatives claimed 21 seats and the Liberal Democrats, who ran the previous minority administration, ended up with 11, while three seats went to Independent candidates.

Now those three members have formed a new group and appear to have struck a deal with Labour to create a governing coalition.

Labour Group Leader Grant Davey said: “Discussions with the newly-formed Independent group have proved to be productive and it’s clear that we all feel the council could benefit from the stability of a formal understanding between the majority group and the Independents.

“At the next meeting of full council we’ll formally announce full details, but I think it’s widely accepted that our manifesto will deal with the issues that matter to residents and businesses in the county.”

The group hopes to press ahead with plans to deliver an extra 1,300 affordable homes and ‘first class’ frontline services.