'No vote' Tory: I'm not surprised

A CONSERVATIVE local election candidate said she was not surprised today after receiving not a single vote.

Shirley Bowes stood for the Tories in the Labour heartland of New Trimdon and Trimdon Grange - the location of Prime Minister Tony Blair's constituency home.

But the election hopeful received no votes whatsoever in Thursday's poll.

Mrs Bowes said: "I'm not surprised at all. It was just to put a name up so there was an alternative.

"You know that it would be Labour that get in. It always has been Labour and probably always will be, whatever they do.

"The true Labour people are not going to vote for anybody else.

"I didn't expect to get in so that's all I'm saying."

A spokesman for Sedgefield Borough Council said: "She got zero votes. Apparently she does not live in the ward so she could not vote for herself. Labour was quite a convincing winner."

Lucy Hovvels, the Labour candidate and Mayor of Sedgefield, won the seat with 441 votes, with the only other candidate, Amanda Foster, of the British National Party, coming second with 75 votes.

Mrs Bowes, of Great Stainton, Stockton, added that she had hoped to get some votes. She told the Mail: "It might have stopped all you people ringing me up."

When told she had come third to the British National Party, Mrs Bowes added: "I would think a lot of people disenchanted with Labour would not vote Conservative, but would probably change their vote to that party."