A 34-year-old mum has been elected a St Edmundsbury Borough councillor for the Abbeygate ward - holding the seat for the Conservatives.
Joanna Rayner took 359 votes in last Thursday’s by-election compared to 236 for Green candidate Mark Ereira-Guyer, 85 for UKIP’s Clive Reason, 83 for Liberal Democrat Christopher Lale and 76 for Labour’s Quentin Cornish.
The poll, which attracted a 22 per cent turn out, was called following the death of Cllr Charlotte Howard.
Cllr Rayner, who is a manager at Havebury Housing Partnership and lives on Moreton Hall with her husband and three-year-old son, said: “I’m grateful to have received so many votes and will now do my best to represent all the people in Abbeygate, whatever their politics.
“Being new to the role of councillor I’m hoping to bring a different perspective, working with residents in Abbeygate to make positive changes for Bury St Edmunds.
“I’ve already demonstrated my commitment to the community and ability to deliver by raising £10,000 for the West Suffolk Hospital neo natal unit in July with a charity ball (Blackthorpe Ball).”
She added that, after hearing residents’ concerns during her campaign, she will now ‘consider each and every one and take forward as appropriate’.