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Labour loses all its county council seats in Harlow

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn holds one-year-old Angelo after speaking to supporters at a rally in Harlow on 27 April. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

All four of the Essex County Council divisions in Harlow have gone to the Conservatives with Labour losing three of their seats.

It will be a blow to Labour hopes at the General Election as Harlow has been a marginal constituency in the past. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn was campaigning in the new town last week.

Robert Halfon won the parliamentary seat for the Tories in 2010 and increased his majority to more than 8,000 at the 2015 election. Labour held the seat from 1997 until 2010 and would need a 6.4% swing to take it back.

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First result of the night in as Kerry Smith keeps his seat

Kerry Smith has kept his seat. Credit: Essex County Council

Independent candidate Kerry Smith has been re-elected in Basildon Westley Heights in the first result of the night in this year's Local Elections.

Smith won the same seat as a Ukip councillor in 2013, but left the party a year later.

He was the clear winner in this year's count, registering 3,341 votes compared to his nearest challenger Andrew Schrader from the Conservatives who earned 1,329 votes.

Turnout in Westley Heights was 33.62%.

Voters head to the polls ahead of the General Election

A man arrives at St Mary Magdalene Church Hall in Great Burstead, Essex, to cast his vote in the local council elections. Credit: Nick Ansell/PA Wire

Hundreds of thousands of voters across the Anglia region are heading to the polls in county council elections ahead of the General Election in June.

They are electing 430 county councillors in Cambridgeshire, Essex, Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Northamptonshire and Suffolk.

While it is a local election, it will be regarded by political experts as a giant opinion poll on voting trends ahead of the General Election in five weeks on Thursday 8 June 2017.

A caravan being used as a polling station for voters in the local council elections in the grounds of a Tesco supermarket in Fulbourn, Cambridgeshire. Credit: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

Polling stations are open until 10pm but the results in most counties in the Anglia region will not be known until Friday afternoon.

There are no elections in Bedfordshire which no longer has a county council. There are also no elections in areas which have a unitary authority like Milton Keynes, Thurrock and Southend-on-Sea.

While Peterborough has no local authority elections, the area will join up with the rest of Cambridgeshire to elect the region's first so-called Metro Mayor.

This new official will lead a new Combined Authority with devolved powers from central Government over transport, housing and regional investment.

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