Sam Sandell wins West Norfolk Council Burnham by-election for Conservatives

Sam Sandell.

Sam Sandell. - Credit: Archant

The Conservatives have won the West Norfolk Council Burnham by-election, with a late councillor's daughter succeeding him.

Voters went to the polls to elect a new borough councillor yesterday.

The number of votes cast at the polling station was 324, and 170 postal votes were also included in the count.

A total of 494 votes were cast, out of 1440 voters on the Register of Electors giving a percentage turnout of 34.31pc.

Samantha Sandell, the Conservative candidate, received 374 votes, while Jean Smith, the UK Independence Party candidate, polled 103.

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Seventeen ballot papers were rejected and Samantha Adelaide Sandell was duly elected.

Miss Sandell is the daughter of Garry Sandell, who held the post until his death at the age of 67 last year. His death had triggered the by-election.

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A former West Norfolk deputy mayor, Conservative Mr Sandell, had held the seat since 1999.

Miss Sandell, who has lived in North Creake all her life, said she was proud to follow in her father's footsteps, but added: 'It's very hard because he said he would support me.'

She said she was very pleased with the result and added that her father had asked her if she would stand.

But she said she only decided to stand in the by-election in mid-January, a few weeks after his death.

Henry Bellingham, Tory MP for North-West Norfolk, said: 'It's a stunning result; a majority of nearly 4 to 1. It shows that people want a local candidate, someone who lives in the ward or constituency.'

The victory for the Conservatives is in contrast to the results of last May's county council elections, when their majority at County Hall was whittled away largely due to the success of UKIP.

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