A FORMER Labour councillor has told how the Conservative’s “balanced and comprehensive approach” led her to swap Red for Blue.

Kursaal ward councillor Judith McMahon resigned from the Labour Party in May, siting concerns about the way the national party was being lead.

She continued as a non-aligned independent until this week when she announced she had been accepted into the Conservative Party.

The former mayor become the fourth opposition councillor to join the Conservative Group in 2017, after UKIP and Independent councillors crossed over.

Ms McMahon said: “Joining the Conservative Party is a change in direction for me, having carefully considered what is being offered to residents in Southend, by those who influence local and national politics.

“I have no doubt that a brighter future is only achievable by a balanced, comprehensive approach, only the Conservative Party offer this.

“I have serious concerns about the Labour Party locally and nationally. Their plans and hopes for ordinary people, including those in Southend, look to chaos and anger as a direction to achieve any change.

“We are entitled to better than this, so I am pleased to have become part of a group of people whose rational, considered positions bring hope.”

Leader of the Council John Lamb welcomed the news: “I am delighted that Judith has joined the Conservative Group.

“Judith is a formidable campaigner and a respected local councillor.

“She will be a huge asset.”

James Duddridge, MP for Rochford and Southend East, said: “It is a great pleasure to welcome councillor Judith McMahon to the Conservative Party. Judith has been a strong voice for Kursaal Ward having first been elected there in 2001, in addition she has recently represented the town as Mayor.

“She will bring a close understanding of what makes Southend tick and will be a great asset to John Lamb’s Conservative team.

Ian Gilbert, leader of the Labour group said: “Judith has made her career out of attacking the Conservative Party. She has said so many times they have let the people in her Kursaal ward down and nothing in that has changed over the last few weeks.

“I don’t recognise that Labour offers people anger. I think we offer people hope.”