A NORTH-EAST council has been taken over by The Brexit Party after ten of its independent councillors moved to the party, and agreed to form a 'Pro-Brexit' coalition with three Conservative councillors.

Last night, Richard Tice, chair of The Brexit Party confirmed that ten councillors from 'different parties' at Hartlepool Borough Council had formed a 'pact' to secure a Pro-Brexit majority.

Out of the council's 33 councillors, the three Conservative councillors - Cllr Brenda Loynes, Cllr Cameron Stokell and Cllr Mike Young - formed the pact.

The council leader, Cllr Shane Moore, previously of the Independent Union group, also defected to The Brexit Party.

The announcement was revealed at a council meeting held on Thursday (September 12) which formally ended The Labour Party's grip on the council.

Councillor Shane Moore said councillors “could not sit by and watch what was happening nationally” regarding Brexit.

He said: “In a town like Hartlepool that overwhelming voted to leave the EU people will be sat watching the events unfolding in Westminster in disbelief.

"What we are seeing is the Labour Party joining forces with the Liberal Democrats and Scottish National Party and other remains parties and groups to block Brexit.

"If these parties are going to come together, we will make it clear we will work with other leave voting groups and parties to do the same.

"We feel collectively, as three groups on the council, we want to send a very clear message to The Labour Party and other politicians we won’t sit ideally by and allow them to block Brexit.”

Deputy council leader, cllr Mike Young, said: "I am incredible disappointed that we still appear to have no way forward for a Brexit, deal or no-deal.

"Those local coalition councillors who have chosen to become members of The Brexit Party are, in my own view, seeking to ensure that we leave the EU in accordance with the 2016 referendum result."

Cllr Young said the annoucement following the party's "success" in the election of a Brexit Party MEP in Hartlepool, and said they wanted to "stand by the people of the town", who voted as a majority to leave the EU.

In the 2016 EU referendum, 69.6 percent of Hartlepool constituents voted to leave. 

Hartlepool Councillor Tom Cassidy, who joined The Brexit Party, said: "I could no longer sit back and witness the 70 percent of people who voted here in 2016 being ignored by MPs in Westminster.

"Joining The Brexit Party as one united team is the only way we can stand up to the establishment and Labour Party, who now back Remain."

  • The council's three Conservative councillors have remained Conservative