INDEPENDENT Geoffrey Fellows pulled off a huge upset on Thursday to be elected in Penketh and Cuerdley.

He beat Labour's Kenny Watson, the chairman of the Momentum group in the town, to win the seat on the borough council.

Conservative Philip Hayward was third, Liberal Democrat David Crowther fourth with UKIP’s Ian Wilson fifth and Steph Davies sixth for the Greens.

Mr Fellows said he was 'overwhelmed and overjoyed' to be elected.

He secured 784 votes, with Mr Watson winning 691.

Turnout was 25.89 per cent.

Mr Fellows added: “Penketh is a great place and we should be grabbing hold of that.

“We need to be working more for the residents of the area – it is all about community and doing some really good stuff for the people of Penketh and Cuerdley.

“We have listened to what people want to say and want for their area.

“We are supporting Friends of Penketh Library and we do hope we have been able to secure something to make sure we have got a full working library in Penketh for many more years to come.

“We are aware it is a place for the community and it is not just about borrowing a book.

“It is an essential place for people to meet and to socialise and for the youth as well, we have great playgroups that operate from there.”

The election was called following the death of Allin Dirir earlier this year.

Labour’s Mr Watson has reflected on the shock result.

He said: “We ran a positive campaign based on what is great about Penketh and what we can do to improve it.

“There was fantastic support from Labour members and supporters in Penketh and beyond.

“We had great feedback from the residents of Penketh.

“I think we suffered from the poor turnout, anything above 30 per cent would’ve been comfortable.

“By-elections often suffer poor turnout, particularly when it’s the second by election in the year.

“However, we will build from this and continue to learn and listen to the people of Penketh.”

A Labour group source labelled the result as 'concerning' – and said councillors in Warrington South will be 'worried'.

Andy Carter, deputy chairman of Warrington Conservatives, thanked residents who supported Mr Hayward.

He added: “While we are obviously disappointed we weren’t successful in taking the seat back from Labour, we’ll continue to work hard for people in Penketh both locally and in Government.

“We know people care greatly about local issues and we congratulate Geoff on his success.

“There’ll be times when we can work together at the Town Hall to challenge decisions made by Labour to get a better deal for people living here.”

Results in full:

Geoffrey Fellows (IND) 784

Kenny Watson (LAB) 691

Philip Hayward (CON) 479

David Crowther (LD) 100

Ian Wilson (UKIP) 69

Steph Davies (Green) 47

Independents Craig Lenihan and Christine Wych won the two seats on Penketh Parish Council.