Successful independent councillors met in Dorchester to investigate ways to campaign for better democracy in Dorset.

The Alliance for Local Living (ALL) for Dorset formed at the end of 2018 to contest this May’s elections.

It fielded 16 candidates across the county, and the independents took 13,116 votes.

Four candidates – Les Fry (Dorchester West), Susan Cocking (Portland), Rob Hughes (Portland) and John Worth (Chickerell) – were successfully elected to Dorset Council.

Mr Fry, who was appointed leader of the Independent group on Dorset Council, said that while independents held only four of the 82 seats, the minority group had been impressed with the openness of other parties.

He said: “I’ve been very impressed with the willingness to work with us from all other parties, and the inclusion into decision making and attendance on committees has been great.

“We are very keen to make a positive difference to help the people of Dorset."

Five candidates were also elected to town councils – Luke Wakeling (Weymouth), Alistair Chisholm and Les Fry (Dorchester), Nigel Dragon (Corfe Castle parish) and John Worth (Chickerell).

The successful candidates, supporters and campaigners are due to meet again in September to plan further action.

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