Update: Lib Dem leader resigns from North Norfolk District Council
- Credit: Archant
The leader of the Liberal Democrat group on North Norfolk District Council has resigned.
Andrew Wells represented the Glaven Ward on the Conservative-led local authority and a by-election to find his successor is likely to be held on September 29.
The council now has 31 Conservatives, 15 Liberal Democrats and one Independent Conservative.
Mr Wells, 27, who has spent the past year on a post-graduate law course, has accepted a job offer in London with international law firm Allen and Overy.
'It was very hard to resist. They are a very good firm,' he said.
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Mr Wells will take up his new post in January and has pledged to spend the intervening time helping his successor and passing over local issues with which he has been dealing.
He said: 'It has been a privilege to represent the Glaven Valley as a councillor, and I am grateful to everyone who has worked with me to get things done for our community over the past 18 months.
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'There have been frustrations, but I also feel that we have been able to really make a difference not just on a range of local issues like planning and enforcement in the villages I represent, but also in fighting for better council services across north Norfolk.
'This has been an immensely difficult decision to make, and I will keep working for residents in my ward to the best of my ability until a new councillor can be elected.'
Mr Wells had previously worked for four-and-a-half years as office manager for North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb.
Mr Lamb said he was very sorry to see Mr Wells move on, adding: 'He was an immensely valuable member of my team and in his short time on the district council a really effective councillor.
'But it's not surprising that he's been given an opportunity with his career that was impossible for him to resist - because he is someone of tremendous talent who will go a long way.'
The Glaven Valley ward includes Blakeney, Morston, Wiveton, Field Dalling, Saxlingham, Letheringsett, Glandford, Brinton, Sharrington, Thornage, Stody and Hunworth.
Last month, the Lib Dems took a district council seat from the Conservatives after Pierre Butikofer won a by-election for the Astley ward, called after the resignation of former councillor Steven Ward.