LABOUR had a night to forget as the Conservatives took two of the three seats up for grabs in the Carlisle City Council by-elections.

The area’s MP John Stevenson welcomed the “extraordinary result” of the Thursday ballot, which reflects a night of Tory gains in local Government across England.

It was also seen in the Hartlepool parliamentary by-election, with Conservatives gaining control from Labour.

The Carlisle elections were held in the Cathedral & Castle, Harraby South & Parklands, and the Newton & Morton North wards, with results announced yesterday.

The seats had all been held by Labour councillors.

Councillor Peter Sunter managed to hold Cathedral & Castle with 673 votes, compared to 599 for his Conservative rival, Hugh McKerrell.

However Conservative candidate Linda Mitchell romped home in Harraby with 1,028 votes – Labour’s Mohammed Harid got 752.

In Newton & Morton North, Neville Lishman overcame Labour’s David Graham by 883 votes to 767.

Carlisle’s Conservative MP John Stevenson said: “I think it is an extraordinary result and a fantastic night for the Conservatives which demonstrates they are in tune with the people of the North and that our agenda is their agenda.

“It also demonstrates how out of touch that Labour have become and they have nothing to say to Carlisle or the north of England.

Conservative city councillor David Shepherd said: “I think that people have realised just what Boris has done for the country and this has been reflected in the way people have voted.

“In terms of the council, we have a strong leader and portfolio holders.

“We have local councillors who respond to problems when we come across them – people recognise this and I’m really pleased.”

The composition of council seats is now as follows: Conservative 19, Green Party 1, Independent 4, Labour 13, Liberal Democrat 1, UKIP 1.

The News & Star tried to speak to a Labour Party representative but were unable to before the deadline.

The turnout on the night was 27.1 per cent.