Twenty-three-year-old narrowly leads in Gore mayor's race

6:02 pm on 9 October 2022
Ben Bell, Gore

Ben Bell, 23, leads by 13 votes. Photo: Supplied / Facebook

Gore District Council could have a new mayor.

Twenty-three-year-old Ben Bell has a narrow 13-vote lead over long-time mayor Tracy Hicks in preliminary results just released.

But with 67 special votes still to be counted it remains nail-bitingly close.

It means Gore District will not finalise its results until Thursday.

Gore District Mayor Tracy Hicks.

Gore Mayor Tracy Hicks. Photo: Gore District Council

The preliminary result, though, remains an extraordinary moment with the young entrepreneur appearing to have ended Hicks' 18-year run as mayor.

Bell would reportedly be the youngest mayor elected in New Zealand history if the win is confirmed. Campbell Barry was elected mayor in Lower Hutt at age 28 in 2019.

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