Veteran councillor wins biggest majority after 33 years in politics

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Councillor Peter Britcliffe has won a majority of 1000 votes, his largest ever, after representing Oswaldtwistle for 33 years.

Councillor Britcliffe, 66, won a total of 1,935 votes, over half of the votes cast, beating Labour’s Colette McCormack and UKIP’s Janet Brown to represent the parish at Lancashire County Council.

Peter said: “I feel very humbled. It’s very gratifying when the hard work that you do is recognised.

“Over the next four years, I’ll be pressing the case at county hall for improvements in Hyndburn’s roads, but the main thing I’d like to see at the moment is Oswaldtwistle library re-opened.

“I shall be pushing the Conservative Party to follow their election problem and re-open our library.”

Turn out in Oswaldtwistle was 33.9 percent, while turn out in Hyndburn was 42.4 per cent, higher than the national average of 29 per cent in local elections.

Credit: Lancashire County Council

Map of Lancashire. Credit: Lancashire County Council

Mr. Britcliffe of New Lane, Oswaldtwistle, is a longstanding member of Lancashire County Council with the Conservative Party, beginning his career in politics in 1984. He was leader of Hyndburn Council from 1999 to 2011 when Labour took control.

Peter and his daughter Sara, 22, are also to become mayor and mayoress of Hyndburn on Saturday, after serving one year as deputy.

Peter said: “It’s very exciting because it’s a completely different role from anything I’ve ever done on the council.

“I really want to make it a year when I’m going to support the community through the churches and the pubs, which are the social hub of Hyndburn.

“Obviously, I will be strictly politically neutral in Hyndburn in my role as mayor. But in County Hall, where I am chairman of the Conservative Group of Councillors I will be with the Conservatives as we push to improve Lancashire.”

But Peter sees no end to his career just yet.

“It’s difficult to say how much longer I’ll be in politics. I’m enjoying what I’m doing, and as long as I am enjoying what I’m doing and I feel fit and able to do it, I’ll continue to do so. I’m sure Mother Nature will tell me when it’s time to give up.”

The Conservative Party gained overall control of Lancashire County Council on May 4, with a majority of 16 councillors.

Peter said he is ‘delighted’ the Conservatives have taken back control of Lancashire.

Peter also said the upcoming general election should be “welcomed.”

“I think there is some tough years ahead and we need the stable leadership Theresa May can provide the country with.”

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