Labour win East Finchley council seat

Labour held on to a crucial council seat in East Finchley last night ahead of the London Mayoral election.

Arjun Mittra won more than 2,000 votes to get the coveted spot on Barnet Council – nearly four times as many votes as his nearest Conservative rival.

But voter turnout remained low, with only 28 per cent of residents casting their ballots.

Cllr Mittra said: “I feel really honoured to have been elected. I look forward to working with people to help them get the improvements to our area that they need.

“I believe that Barnet’s Conservative council has let East Finchley residents down - they have not listened over parking charges, road safety, and cuts to our children centres.

“They just don’t seem to care. The residents of East Finchley have sent a clear statement that it is Labour that is on their side.”

The by-election was triggered by the resignation of Labour councillor Andrew McNeil, who is stepping down after six years at the town hall.

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A popular children’s author and the brains behind the best-selling adult board game Kingmaker, former Cllr McNeil said he was leaving local politics to spend more time with his family.

Labour supporters today (Thursday 12) claimed the victory was a sign voters were growing disillusioned with the Conservative-run council.

The vote comes just three weeks before London decides who to elect as the city’s mayor.

The full results were as follows:

Arjun Mittra (Labour Party) - 2,117 votes

Anshul Gupta (Conservative Party) - 543 votes

Jane Gibson (Liberal Democrats) - 461 votes