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Labour defended the other seven wards it held prior to the election, with incumbent councillors Gary Hewson, Loraine Woolley, Pat Vaughan, Adrianna McNulty and Helena Mair being re-elected, along with a new face in the Carholme ward in Laura McWilliams and Bill Bilton returning to City Hall after a two year break.

Labour suffered losses in Wakefield, Sheffield and Hull, despite holding onto all three councils, on a night when the Conservatives comfortably saw off the party's challenge in several flagship London boroughs.

Labour's Ellie Emberson, 19, made history when she won Minster ward, becoming the youngest woman ever elected to the council.

Daily Star Online earlier reported the councils to watch for possible Conservative gains include Portsmouth, Basildon, Thurrock, Peterborough and Colchester, all of which could see the party win overall control on a relatively small swing.

Labour's Ashley Minto polled 1525, the Greens' Jenny Barnes 297 and James Read for the Lib Dems 266.

Cllr Thorpe said he felt the key reason that wasn't reflected in Labour's results was the low turnout - 34.8 per cent - an issue he feels has blighted local politics.

Reflecting on the result, Wakefield's Labour council leader Peter Box said: "It's been a mixed night".

But council leader Harry Trueman, whose wife Dorothy secured re-election on the night in Washington West, ended the night with a warning for the newly energised opposition.

The Conservatives held control of the symbolic London borough of Wandsworth, results on Friday confirmed, defying some predictions that it could fall to Labour. There was also an unforeseen double win for the Green Party in Altrincham with Dan Jerrome and Geraldine Coggins creating a historic event for the party as they have never had a seat in Trafford previously.

Labour's leader in Amber Valley has expressed his disappointment at the outcome of Thursday's election, but remains optimistic about his party's chances next year.

He said: "It's always hard to win contests when you're the party in government, so taking St Chad's and Barnes was very encouraging for us".

The Tories also gained three seats.

Labour have gained Plymouth, but they've lost Derby to no overall control. "This must have been very worrying for Labour so soon after last year's General Election result".

He said: "The Conservative vote is advancing more than Labour".

It also become the largest party in Trafford - which had been the Conservative's only council in Greater Manchester.