IT’S a case of ‘as you were’ in Knaphill as the Conservative trio of Saj Hussain, Melanie Whitehand and Deborah Harlow held on to their seats to lock out the ward for the Tories.
No candidate came within 800 votes of third-placed Councillor Harlow (1,293 votes and a two-year term) as the reigning Conservatives underlined their stranglehold on the ward – and the new-look council chamber.
Cllr Hussain (1,587; four years) and Cllr Whitehand (1,333; three years) ensured the Tories moved on to 17 seats out of a possible 27 so far, with just three more slots to be decided (with just the remaining Hoe Valley ward results due at the time of writing).
Popular local figure Cllr Hussain, who works at the village’s Post Office and has carried momentum right through his entire political career over the last four years, said: “My residents come before anything else and, having voted for me, I will endeavour to continue to live up to their expectations. I would like to thank everyone who voted for me.”
An emotional Cllr Whitehand said: “Thank you to all the residents in Knaphill who voted for me. I hope I can fulfil their ambitions for the village.”
Cllr Harlow added: “I am thrilled to be re-elected and to be supporting the residents of Knaphill.”
BARKER David (Liberal Democrat): 394
BRIERLEY James (Green Party): 407
ELLICOTT Vanessa (Liberal Democrat): 399
FORD Richard (Labour): 384
HARLOW Deborah (Conservative): 1,293
HUSSAIN Saj (Conservative): 1,587
JAFFRI Syed (Liberal Democrat): 223
KNIGHT Terence (UKIP): 372
WHITEHAND Melanie (Conservative): 1,333
*(6 rejected ballots)