THE ruling Conservative group on Wyre Forest District Council and the Liberal and Independent group have announced they will form an alliance to lead the authority.

It means the council’s political administration will contain 15 Conservatives, two Liberals and four Independents after councillor Julian Phillips, who left the Tories earlier this year to become an unaffiliated independent joined the Liberal and Independent group.

The alliance of 21 is still one short of an overall majority on the 42-member authority - which also contains nine Labour councillors, seven ICHC councillors and five UKIP councillors.

As part of the alliance agreement Council leader, Conservative Marcus Hart has appointed Liberal and Independent group leader, Independent councillor Helen Dyke to the cabinet.

Other members of the new cabinet will be Conservative councillors Mr Hart as leader and member for strategy, Nathan Desmond as deputy leader and member for resources and transformation, Anne Hingley as member for health, well-being and housing and former leader John Campion as member for planning and economic regeneration.

Mr Hart said: “This agreement between the two groups provides stability and certainty in the political administration and direction of the council for the period to the next elections in May 2015.

“We have come together in the interests of local residents and businesses to continue driving forward the programme of change for the council.

“We will focus on delivering the agreed priorities of economic regeneration and keeping the district safe, clean and looking good in line with the medium term financial strategy adopted last year.

“While the two groups will be working as a team, as leader of the council I will endeavour to build consensus with all the political groups on the council in the best interests of Wyre Forest.”

Mrs Dyke added: “I am pleased the two groups have prioritised good governance and stability for the council and local residents.

“My group will now play a direct role in decision-making on the many issues dealt with by the cabinet.

“I am looking forward to moving from the scrutiny role I have performed for a number of years into my cabinet post, where I will have lead responsibility for a range of important front-line services.”

The alliance’s first full council meeting will take place on Wednesday next week where the administration will put forward proposals for committee and external body chairmen.

Councillors will also be looking to appoint a new chairman to succeed Liberal Fran Oborski.

Deputy chairman, Conservative Daniel McCann who was lined up to take over as chairman lost his seat at last month’s elections and the administration has not yet announced who they will now put forward.

The announcement comes days after Liberal councillor Mike Price was appointed Kidderminster Mayor by the town's charter trustees.

All councillors are up for re-election next year when ward boundaries are changed and the number of members on the authority is cut from 42 to 33.