Tory candidate Noel Barrett-Morton convincingly won yesterday’s West Ward by-election for a vacant seat on Marlborough town council.
The controversial City businessman, who was revealed during the campaign not to be a knight of the realm but to hold only an Irish feudal title, defeated IT expert Tim Reenan by 225 votes in a low poll (turnout: 24.99%).
Mr Barrett-Morton, 67, who lives in Cromwell Court, in Marlborough’s High Street, polled 498 votes while Mr Reenan, 49, polled 273, some 403 of the votes being posted in advance.
“Congratulations to Noel on being elected and for his kind words after the count,” Mr Reenan told Marlborough News Online. “I am obviously disappointed to come second, but for my first venture into public life I am pretty pleased with the result.”
“It was always going to be a tough ask orchestrating a DIY campaign against the ‘machine’ of a main political party. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the residents who took the time to come out and vote for me yesterday — I’m sorry we didn’t make it this time around.”
“I would also like to thank my lovely wife Jacky for diligently supporting me over the past four weeks or so and for bravely treading the streets with me, although not always in the most appropriate footware.”
The by-election showed little difference, certainly no significant political swing, from the by-election last year when Martin Houlden (Cons) polled 64.5 per cent on a 29.7 per cent turnout and his LibDem opponent mustered 34.4 per cent of the vote.
Yesterday’s by-election gave the Tories 64.1 per cent of the vote on a 24.99 per cent turnout with the Independent candidate claiming 35.1 per cent of the vote.