The end of the beginning?
This is a picture of the election of Kevin Carroll at a by election in 2004 which was a pivotal point in Torbay politics.
His victory -in a formerly safe Lib Dem ward- marked the first point at which the Conservatives in Torbay began a concerted and planned political fight back based on a proper alternative vision for Torbay rather than relying on the occasional 'get lucky' wins here and there.
The campaign that culminated in last nights resounding victory in Torbay was based on a determination to 'stop the rot' that has infected not just the fabric of Torbay itself but also the politics of the place.
The councillors on our side who won stood because they want to take Torbay back in the direction we know it needs to go in order be prosperous again; so the campaign was about the future of the bay; not the future of bay politicians. Others may have tried to personalise the campaign but we have stuck firmly to the issues and politics - and especially our vision for the future.
Fortunately the electorate appear to have noticed the lack of any alternative vision from the other parties, save a lot of campaigning about what they didn't want ('No' to a casino, 'No' to a hot air balloon, 'No' to any solution of Oldway, etc, etc). Simply campaigning with no purpose other than hanging on to power is seen through by the electorate.
Some outstanding talent has at last been sent to the Town Hall, people with track records of running successful businesses and organisations and there will be a much needed improvement in the quality of decisions and the level of scrutiny.
So last night is 'the end of the beginning' of the project to turn Torbay round.