NEARLY half of York's councillors will be newcomers to the council chamber, sparking hopes of a new era of fresh ideas and consensus politics.

Of the 47 seats contested, 25 were won by candidates with council experience while 22 were won by debutants.

The newcomers included Bishopthorpe Road trader Johnny Hayes, who won as an independent in Micklegate, Acomb florist Sue Hunter, who won in Westfield with the Liberal Democrats, Greens Denise Craghill and Lars Kramm in Guildhall and Micklegate respectively, Danny Myers and Margaret Wells for Labour in Clifton and Conservatives Peter Dew, Sam Lisle and Stuart Rawlings in Rawcliffe and Clifton Without.

York Press: Sue Hunter, chair of the Acomb Alive Traders’ Association

Florist Sue Hunter, of Acomb Alive, was elected in Westfield

Speaking after the declaration, Cllr Hayes told The Press: "I am very proud that people have decided to vote for me as an independent candidate. I am going to do my best and I am looking forward to it."

New Liberal Democrat councillor Ashley Mason, who runs the private ambulance company YorMed and was elected in Dringhouses and Woodthorpe, said: "It's fantastic, and to have a good majority is great. People have put their trust in us."

York Press:

4 of Labour's new intake: Stuart BarnesMargaret Wells, Danny Myers and James Flinders

The influx of fresh faces prompted optimism from Liberal Democrat leader Keith Aspden.

He said: "With new councillors in each political group, I hope we can move away from the style of the council leadership over the past four years towards a more consensual and open process. This is certainly what Liberal Democrat councillors will be calling for."

Conservative leader Chris Steward added: "I think the new faces will enable more positive working and the closeness of the seat numbers means we will practically have to. Not only is there not a 100 per cent clear mandate for any party, but also we need a change from the previous Labour administration of never engaging and then always being defensive on everything. It's vital to make things about policy rather than personality."

York Press:

The 2 new Green councillors

New Green councillor Lars Kramm said it had been a great day for York Greens, and said on twitter that the work began now for the good of York and residents in Micklegate, where he won.

His party colleague Dave Taylor said on the night: "We need to see a council where the major parties share information and consult with the smaller parties."