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Election result even better than I imagined, says Ealing Labour leader
LABOUR leader Julian Bell said the borough election results exceeded even his own hopes as they cruised to a huge majority in Ealing.
Labour ended the night with 53 of the 69 seats, while Conservatives seats fell from 23 to just 12 seats.
The Liberal Democrats lost one seat and now have four councillors.
Cllr Bell said: “That was amazing. That exceeded even my highest expectations and we’re euphoric.
“I think it gives us a great platform to win the general election next year.
“If I were Angie Bray, the Tory MP in Acton Central, I’d be getting extremely worried. Based on today’s results, Dr Rupa Huq, our candidate, is heading to Westminster and Ed Miliband is heading to 10 Downing Street.”
Mr Bell said he thought the future of local hospitals was a major factor in his party’s victory and that residents did not want A&Es to close.
He wants his newly-elected councillors to expand schools, regenerate housing estates and get more jobs and apprenticeships for young people during his four-year term.
“We’re going to freeze the council tax for a fifth consecutive year and we’ll try to extend it further than that, though we know we have some huge cuts coming,” he said.
“There’s a very tough four years ahead but we’ll continue to make some big investments in capital projects.”
Conservative leader David Millican, who managed to hold on to his own seat, had an evening to forget.
“Obviously the national picture doesn’t help us much,” he said. “It’s a cloud over our shoulders really.
“I feel sorry for the guys and women who worked so hard, out canvassing every day, knocking on doors.”