LABOUR has taken control of Thurrock Council - one of its top targets in the south Essex - after the Tories lost ten seats at the election.

Thurrock Council was one of Labour’s top targets in the south east ahead of yesterday's local elections. 

The party needed to gain six seats to take control of Thurrock, which has been run by the Tories for the past few years during a period of turbulence that saw the council declared effectively bankrupt in December 2022.

Labour ended up making a net gain of eight seats, enough for a clear majority, with Independents picking up two and the Tories suffering a net loss of 10.

The party now has 27 seats - a majority of five.

Conservative Party chairman Richard Holden has said there is “no doubt” that Rishi Sunak will lead the party into a general election after the Tories suffered a bruising set of local election results across the country.

The party chairman was repeatedly asked whether the Prime Minister’s can survive following losses in key areas including Thurrock.

He told Times Radio: “The Prime Minister is going to go on and lead the Conservative Party into the general election, there’s no doubt about that.”

Asked for his reaction to the results so far, Mr Holden said: “Not a great set of results but coming off I think it would be fair to say a very high watermark in 2021.”