THE Green Party has won its first seat on Dorset County Council after Clare Sutton triumphed in the Rodwell by-election.

The Greens took the seat from Labour, who came third.

The Weymouth seat became vacant after Labour's Dan Brember resigned due to work commitments.

Voters went to the polls on Thursday and the count was held last night.

Ms Sutton won the seat from Labour with 663 votes.

Conservative candidate Richard Nickinson was second with 561 votes. Labour's Hazel Priest was third with 417 votes. Francis Drake for Ukip polled 174 votes and Graham Winter for the Lib Dems received 87 votes.

Ms Sutton, who is known locally for her efforts to restore access to Castle Cove Beach, says she aims to champion community values.

She said “Getting elected isn’t the end of the effort…it is the beginning. Support for the Green Party is growing all the time across south and west Dorset."

She added: “What we now have to prove is that we are worth voting for. I will fight tooth and nail to represent all those people in Rodwell, and elsewhere, who feel ignored and excluded by endless cuts in local services.”

Ms Sutton said one of the first priorities will be campaigning on behalf of people living along Weymouth’s most polluted street - Boot Hill.

The Green Party is organising a meeting next month to give residents, who have long complained about traffic fumes and congestion on Boot Hill, a chance to have their say directly to council officials.

Ms Sutton said: “Environmental issues sit right at the top of the Green Party’s agenda. And the plight of people living on Boot Hill shows why. They have been ignored for too long. We want to work with others to try to find ways of improving their lives.”