Tory leader survives group challenge

A council boss has narrowly kept his job after a large chunk of his own party voted to oust him.

David Gillett, the leader of Havant Borough Council, was challenged for the post of leader of the Tories by fellow councillor David Guest at the annual Conservative Group meeting.

He won by just four votes, meaning up to 13 of his party's 30 councillors voted against him.

And today one party insider said it was the result of infighting within the party, adding: 'I think Gillett's days are numbered.'

But Cllr Gillett, who has been leader since May 1999, said his position is safe and all that matters is that he won.

However he admitted there were 'individual concerns and frustrations' within the group.

Cllr Gillett said the Tory party is in a particularly strong position, having just gained two more seats at the local elections.

The Conservatives now have control of 30 of the 38 seats in the council.

jenny.haworth@thenews.co.uk