Prescott targets town halls

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Indy Politics
John Prescott, Labour's Deputy Leader (above), fired the opening shots yesterday in the local elections to be held in England and Wales in May.

Labour, he said, now had more councillors than any party in history - up from just over 7,000 in 1979 to 12,500 - and controlled 250 town halls, up from 110 in 1979.

"The Tories have been driven out of nearly every town hall in the land - from 240 councils in 1979 to just 13 today," Mr Prescott said.

But the party's Environment spokesman, Frank Dobson, warned that council taxes are likely to rise by an average of 8 per cent this year. He blamed cuts in central government grants.

Photograph: Jane Baker

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