ONLY people lacking a sense of humour would not have enjoyed Winchester local politics in the last week.

The Tories had won a narrow majority at the recent elections, but then their grip on power looked weak after Cllr Kim Gottlieb decided to jump ship and, as an independent was set to play a pivotal role with the Lib Dems and Conservatives on 22 councillors each.

The Liberal Democrats felt they were poised to take control and have the chance to steer major projects such as the Central Winchester Regeneration, aka Silver Hill 2, the new sports centre and the Daddy of them all, Station Approach.

The city councillors met at the Guildhall, earnest speeches were made, the debate was heated and then just as we reached the climax... Cllr Jamie Scott decides to announce he is backing the Conservatives. He even got up and walked across the chamber to join the Tories, in protest at the Lib Dem’s “opportunism”. Earlier this week he announced he is formally joining the Tory group but stresses no deal was made to secure his return.

His and Cllr Gottlieb’s moves have attracted criticism. They were elected as a Tory/Lib Dem and have no right to switch allegiance, say critics.

Well, politicians have been doing it since the dawn of time. Winston Churchill did it twice. Cllr Gottlieb faces the electors in 2019 and Cllr Scott in 2020. Best let them decide in due course.