THREE councillors will take their seats on Oldham Council for the first time to represent Saddleworth after topping the polls at the local elections in May.
Pam Byrne will represent Saddleworth North, Jamie Curley was elected in Saddleworth South while Saddleworth West and Lees chose Valerie Leach.
In Saddleworth North, the seat changed hands from Labour to Conservative as Pam Byrne came out on top of a close contest with 933 votes.
In second was Liberal Democrat John Eccles with 882 votes followed by Labour’s George Hulme with 820 votes.
Cllr Byrne, who is a long-serving councillor with Saddleworth Parish Council, said: “I was stunned at the result! I expected a recount as it was close but then we didn’t need one and I was delighted.
“We find out soon what committees I will be on at Oldham and what I need to do there. I am really looking forward to being on Oldham Council and representing Saddleworth.
“The first thing I want to do locally is hold surgeries there and see people.
“I am already involved in the community with the band club, flower shows, and various groups and committees, and I look forward to building on that.”
Cllr Byrne joins Lib Dems Cllr Garth Harkness and Cllr Derek Heffernan in representing Saddleworth North on Oldham Council.
In Saddleworth South, Lib Dem John McCann lost the seat he has held since 2006 to Conservative Jamie Curley, who also serves on Saddleworth Parish Council.
Cllr Curley said: “I am very pleased. It’s been a long campaign and there have been lots of issues. And there are lots of issues still to be tackled.
“Now comes a whole plateful of problems and issues for the next four years. I will take those on board and do my best and work with people, not just Saddleworth South but everybody, to find a solution.
“John McCann has been in place for 12 years and he was the sitting councillor. It took a lot of work but I am very pleased.”
The vote in Saddleworth South was:Helen Bishop (Independent) 180; Jamie Curley (Conservative) 1215; Catherine Hunter-Rossall (Green Party) 103; Ian Manners (Labour and Co-operative) 793; John McCann (Liberal Democrats) 1043.
Cllr Curley’s election makes him the third Conservative councillor to represent Saddleworth South alongside Cllr Graham Sheldon and Cllr John Hudson.
Meanwhile,Valerie Leach, who has experience as a councillor in Camden, joins Labour councillors Adrian Alexander and Steven Hewitt in representing Saddleworth West and Lees.
She received the most votes on polling day – 1041, ahead of Conservative Andris D’Adamo on 842 and Lib Dem Sam Al-Hamdani on 737, to take the seat previously held by UKIP.
Cllr Leach said: “I am pleased to be elected and I look forward to building on the work Adrian and Steve have already done.
“One of the most important things for me is getting businesses and groups involved the community.
“Most businesses are already involved and people are doing a great job but we can work more to bring in community groups and organisations.”
Overall in Oldham, turnout was 30.597 percent, while in Saddleworth it was: Saddleworth North: 33.98 percent; Saddleworth South: 40.49 percent (highest in the borough); and Saddleworth West and Lees: 31.36 percent.
The overall make-up of Oldham Council is now: Labour 47; Lib Dem 8; Conservative 4; Independent 1.
For more information about the elections, including a full breakdown of results in the 20 wards, visit Oldham Council’s website.