Fraser Hicks makes it onto Isles of Scilly Council at his first try
A SON of former Isles of Scilly Council chairman Mike Hicks has been elected to the authority following a two-way by-election fight for a St Mary's seat.
Boatman Fraser Hicks, who skippers the pleasure launch Sea King, polled 222 votes against bike hire shop owner Mark Prebble's 183.
The 30 per cent turnout in the poll was described by returning officer Richard Burraston as "lowish".
Both candidates stood as independents with Mr Prebble, a relatively new islander, abandoning the Green Party banner under which he unsuccessfully stood at the last local government election.
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Mr Hicks, celebrated for his laconic wit, is a member of an old Scillonian family.
Of his success at the first time of "putting up for council" Mr Hicks contented himself with saying: "I'm obviously delighted to gain a seat. Now to see how it all works."
Mr Prebble was sanguine about his second rebuff at the hands of the electors, saying: "I'll give Fraser every support. Good luck to him."
He had yet to decide whether he would try a third time, he said: "We'll see what happens next time."
His switch from Green to independent was the result of "listening and taking heed", said Mr Prebble: "I can accept there may not be a place for party politics in Scilly".
Town Hall-bound Mr Hicks has also been chosen as Scilly's tourism superstar in a nationwide initiative by the Daily Mirror and national tourism body VisitEngland.
Mr Hicks won the nomination for the role of tourism ambassador, being picked over four other candidates by directors of the Islands Business Partnership.
The partnership's Amanda Pender said the scheme was designed to promote the work of unsung heroes who work within the tourism industry.
"Nominees must be knowledgeable and passionate about their area," she said.
"They must also have demonstrated a commitment to making every visitor's trip extra-special, going above and beyond the call of duty to make a holiday experience to remember."
Nominations have been made from across the country, with a shortlist of ten candidates to be announced at the end of January.
Mr Hicks was one of five islanders put forward after a request for nominations made by the partnership.
If successful in making the final ten, he will join the other candidates in London to produce a 30-second film that will be posted online and made available to the general public to vote on.