A LIBERAL Democrat and an independent have defected to the Conservatives on Witney Town Council, leaving just one opposition councillor.

Lib Dem Brenda Churchill and independent Jim King have switched sides on the 17-member council, leaving just Labour’s Duncan Enright in opposition.

Mrs Churchill said the Lib Dem’s opposition to the Cogges Link Road, to be built by Oxfordshire County Council, was one reason for her defection.

The road plans to ease congestion in Bridge Street by creating another road over the River Windrush. It will run from Oxford Hill, around the Cogges estate, to the junction at Sainsbury’s in Station Lane.

She said: “I don’t agree with what the Liberal Democrats in the Witney branch are doing at the moment.

“I agree with a lot of the things that the Tories are doing for the town. I want that to continue, and I think I can do that as a Conservative better than I can as a Liberal Democrat.”

Ross Beadle, Lib Dem Witney branch chairman, said: “It’s no loss for the Liberal Democrats. Brenda has been ploughing her own furrow for many years.”

Mr King said: “My views have always been in agreement with what [the Conservatives] are doing.

“I have agreed the eight years I’ve been on the town council.”

Tory town council leader, David Harvey, said he was “thrilled and delighted”, and said: “I take this as a measure of support for the work that the Conservatives have done over the past 12 years.”

Labour’s Duncan Enright said: “I welcome this because it’s nailing their colours to the mast.”

All the council’s seats are up for election in May.