Southend Council faces the possibility of a coalition leadership after its Tory rulers lost control at a dramatic election night.

The party was ambushed by a strong Labour surge and a resolute performance from the Liberal Democrats and Independents.

Shedding three seats overall, the Tories are now left one short of the number they need to maintain overall power in the Civic Centre.

In theory, that means a rainbow coalition of Labour, the Lib Dems and the Independents, with 26 seats between them, could take control.

The final result is likely to be decided over the next few days, as the parties' leaders desperately negotiate a solution.

But, for the Tories, it was a humbling night at Southend Tennis and Leisure Centre - and the first time they will be without a firm grip on the council in 12 years.

Click here for the full results, and read the full analysis in Monday's Echo.