Brothers tie the vote at Town Council election

BALLOT BROTHERS: Harry Allen (left) and James Allen

THE ELECTION for Southborough Town Council ended in a “nail-biting” finish, as two brothers who stood as candidates tied for the last remaining place.

Harry Allen, 27 and James Allen, 24, both Conservative candidates in the Southborough North ward, received exactly the same number of votes – 401 each.

The unusual electoral incident took place at the Assembly Hall on May 4, after the Borough Council elections had finished, with the two candidates waiting anxiously for the result.

James Allen was eventually elected for the final seat after both of their names were written down on separate pieces of paper and pulled from an envelope by an election official.

Harry Allen, who is also a Borough Councillor for Speldhurst & Bidborough, told the Times: “When they were calling the numbers, I did feel a bit nervous, and then I was totally shocked when we got the exact same number.

“It was so very close, nail-biting at times, until they called my brother’s name. I was so happy that he won.

“It’s fairer that he got the position over me, as I am also a Borough Councillor, and this will give him some great experience.”

On winning his seat on the Town Council, James Allen told the Times: “It was by pure chance that we got the same number, I was so surprised and delighted.

“When they called my name to say I had won, I was really pleased but was sad my brother couldn’t have won as well, but he can always stand again in the future.

“I am looking forward to working hard for Southborough North, focusing on the civic centre and working with my fellow councillors.”

When asked what it was like running against a family member, Harry Allen said: “I enjoyed it, you know. I went leafletting with him and we talk a lot about politics at home as well as current affairs and local issues.

“We are definitely still talking, no brother rivalry here! I am just really supportive of James and I think he will do really well. “

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