ONE of Poole’s newest councillors has stood down just over a year after being elected to represent residents of Branksome East.

Conservative member Stephen Rollo-Smith  has resigned with immediate effect from Borough of Poole, due to ill health, forcing a by-election for the seat.

He was elected in May last year, after coming to prominence speaking at the Talbot Village planning appeal, against the proposal for a massive development of 378 homes and educational use on land south of Wallisdown Road.

Cllr Elaine Atkinson, leader of the council, said: “In his short time as a councillor Stephen represented the residents of his ward well, particularly in relation to the Talbot Village planning appeal.

“I understand that following a period of ill health he has decided to relocate overseas and will not return as a councillor.”

The resignation of a councillor on the hung council, leaves the Conservatives with 20 members, Liberal Democrats with 18 and Poole People with three.

The date of the by-election is not yet known. However, the council hopes to combine it with the election of the Police and Crime Commissioner on November 15, to minimise the cost to council tax payers.