Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland local elections 19: New faces to the fore as an independent causes a stir

Kyle Black (Louise Convery/UTV/PA)
Kyle Black (Louise Convery/UTV/PA)

By Annamay McNally

The son of murdered prison officer David Black is among the new faces on Mid-Ulster District Council.

Kyle Black took a seat for the DUP in the Carntogher district electoral area.

Mid-Ulster council was the first to declare a result yesterday, with Sinn Fein's Darren Totten elected in the Magherafelt area.

One of the other big stories was Dan Kerr, an independent republican first-timer, romping home at the first count in the Sinn Fein stronghold of Torrent with 1,525 votes,

While local Sinn Fein MLA Linda Dillon said they remained the largest party in Torrent, and returned three strong candidates with sitting councillors Niamh Doris, Joe O'Neill and Ronan McGinley, there were a few tears shed with the loss of long-standing Galbally councillor, Mickey Gillespie.

Overall, the SDLP increased their vote in Mid-Ulster, with Malachy Quinn topping the poll in Torrent and new face Kerri Hughes adding to their tally in Cookstown, and increasing the first-preference vote by 260.

In Dungannon, the DUP's Clement Cuthbertson, returns to the council with a poll-topping performance of 1,833 first preference votes, alongside party colleague, Kim Ashton, who was elected on the second count.

Mr Cuthbertson said GP provision in Dungannon and anti-social behaviour at public parks were among the key issues he would be raising.

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