LABOUR caused a major upset by capturing the Conservative stronghold of Hyde Werneth where the retiring John Bell had served the ward for more than 40 years.
In a night of high drama, Labour’s Shibley Alam won by five votes after a recount was needed and Hyde Werneth was the last of the 19 wards to be declared shortly before 2am on Friday.
“I am overwhelmed by the result, it is awesome,” explained newly-elected Cllr Alam.
Cllr Bell, the Conservative leader on Tameside Council, was elected in 1975 and, apart from a two-year spell between 1995-97 when he lost his seat, he had served Hyde Werneth since then.
Shibley polled 1,473 votes to 1,468 from Paul Molloy who had been seeking to succeed Cllr Bell.
Hyde Werneth was one of two shock results as polling day saw the remaining 17 seats remain unchanged.
The other was in Ashton Waterloo, a Labour stronghold, which was captured by the Green Party’s Lee Huntbach who polled 1,073 votes to 935 from Labour’s Jean Drennan.
Tameside Council leader Brenda Warrington had a runaway victory to retain Denton West while Allison Gwynne, wife of the town’s MP Andrew, was re-elected in Denton North East.
There is a new Labour councillor in Denton South where Jack Naylor won the seat having succeeded the retiring Mike Fowler.
In Hyde’s two other wards, Labour’s Betty Affleck held off a strong challenge from Conservative Andrea Colbourne in Godley and Helen Bowden comfortably held on to Newton for Labour and Co-operative.
In Longdendale, there is a new Labour councillor as Jacqueline Owen won the seat having only been selected to contest the seat in February that was vacated by the retiring Gillian Peet.