Tories and Lib Dems go head to head in South Norfolk council elections

The political colour of South Norfolk went from yellow to blue four years ago when the Conservatives turned opposition into a landslide victory.

The 2007 district council elections ended 12 years of Liberal Democrat rule, with voters returning 39 Conservatives and seven Lib Dems.

The Tories are looking to hold on to their big majority this time around with all seats being contested when the polling stations open on May 5.

And after licking their wounds after a crushing defeat four years ago, the Lib Dems are aiming to make gains from the ruling Conservatives with both parties fielding candidates in all 36 wards.

It is difficult to see how 12 months of the coalition government will influence people's voting.

However, the 14 Labour, 10 Green, five UKIP and two independent candidates are hoping that national politics will increase the chances of having more than two parties in the council chamber after Thursday's vote.

The Conservatives, led by John Fuller, have pledged in their manifesto to keep council tax down, promote the local economy, build the Big Society, keep South Norfolk clean and tidy, and lay down strict rules to developers to enforce proper design standards and use the government's new homes bonus to create more community facilities in towns and villages.

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They will also be keeping a close eye on the elections in Great Yarmouth where the Tories will look to advance shared services discussions with the borough council if they hold on to power.

The Lib Dems, led by Murray Gray, say they will make South Norfolk a greener place, strengthen services for young people, support the frail, vulnerable and elderly, enable a thriving economy, improve communications and access, and control excessive housing development.

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