THE Conservatives clung on to power in Winchester in a tight election contest.

Two Tories lost their seats but the ruling party picked up two other wards to maintain their wafer thin one-seat majority.

The Liberal Democrats enjoyed a net gain of one seat while the Independents lost one overall.

This morning the Conservatives still have 29; the Liberal Democrats, 24, the Independents, three, and Labour, one.

The two main parties will both be slightly disappointed not to have done better; the Tories to keep up the momentum of success of recent years.

The Lib Dems now have to wait two years until the next city council elections in 2010. They will comfort themselves, though, that their overall vote of 15,511 outscored the Tories' 14,609.