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Tuesday, 21 October 2014

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Lib Dems keep city Tories in power

THE Conservatives remain in control of Carlisle City Council, thanks to the Liberal Democrats.

At today’s annual council meeting, Tory Mike Mitchelson was re-elected council leader despite Labour now being the largest party.

All Seven Liberal Democrat councillors voted for Mr Mitchelson, and in return the Conservatives elected Liberal Democrat Ralph Aldersey as mayor ahead of Labour’s Mary Styth.

The post of council leader is crucial as the leader picks the other members of the council’s ruling cabinet.

Mr Aldersey will be Carlisle’s 419th mayor. He has been a city councillor since 1983, has also served as a county councillor for 23 years and has unsuccessfully attempted to be elected as MP for Carlisle.

He said: “Today we’ve seen something new, something unique. We are seeing a break in the mould of one party claiming the mayorality for themselves.”

He paid tribute to his predecessor, Judith Pattinson, whose term of office ended today.

She has the distinction of being Carlisle’s longest serving mayor, as her term of office was extended to 13 months because of the European elections.

She also raised more money for charity than any of her predecessors, £24,000.

Fellow Conservative Sandra Fisher was elected deputy mayor and is likely to succeed councillor Aldersey as mayor next year.

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