A PRUDHOE resident who helped demonstrate the town’s support of a proposed new retail park has been elected as a town councillor.

Chris Barrett stood in Thursday’s election to fill the vacancy on Prudhoe Town Council for the Prudhoe Castle and Eltringham ward an an independent candidate, alongside Lee Robinson who stood as a Labour candidate.

He won the seat with 283 votes to 144, following a campaign which saw him create a survey to show support for the proposed retail park at Low Prudhoe.

Of 450 people taking part, 91 per cent said they were in favour of the development, despite the fact Prudhoe Town Council had previously voted to object against the application.

Chris hoped to join the council to help reflect the views of local people.

Following the election, Chris, who works as a senior site manager at Prudhoe Community High School, said: “I am really pleased. I worked really hard so I’m happy it paid off.

“I really want to thank people for their help and support and reassure people - perhaps those who didn’t vote for me – that could they please get in touch and I will do whatever I can to help.”

Chris’s hopes for his role in local democracy include focusing on providing things for young people to do in the town, and encouraging local people to help the police clamp down on crime by encouraging them to report things.

He said his previous job in the Army reserves and as a deputy sector civil affairs military liaison officer, working in Cyprus, helped inspire him to join the town council.

“As part of that I organised bi-communal events and it was a really rewarding job. I think it planted a seed a little bit about getting communities working together.”