Control of Hull City Council has been decided after a frantic day of polling in the city's biggest set of local elections in years.

Campaigning ran to the final few hours on Thursday as Labour and the Liberal Democrats vied for control of the Guildhall in what is widely expected to be a tight contest as Labour nationally struggles to make headway against the governing Conservatives.

So-called 'Super Thursday' saw millions of voters go to the polls across the United Kingdom to elect councillors, elected mayors, members of the Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly members.

Here in Hull, 19 council seats were up for grabs with political parties making frantic last-ditch attempts to secure victory in key seats that will determine the council's political direction for the next four years.

To sign up for the Hull Live newsletter, click here

Has Labour done enough to bunk a widely-expected national trend away from the party? Have the Liberal Democrats and Conservatives campaigned hard enough for their alternative case to cut through with Hull's voters?

The answer lays in the tens of ballot boxes inside the counting centre in Hull's Bonus Arena. Results are expected to trickle in from 11am on Friday.

Voters have also had their say on the direction of Humberside Police, with Labour's Keith Hunter vying to remain as the force's Police and Crime Commissioner.

We will bring you all the results live as they are announced, along with reaction and analysis.

There were queues in Avenue ward, one of the key areas expected to determine the outcome of the Hull council elections
There were queues in Avenue ward, one of the key areas expected to determine the outcome of the Hull council elections

In the local elections, traffic congestion was one of the key issues voters discussed on their exit from Covid-safe polling stations across the city.

Conservative voter Ryan Jeffrey, 67, said: "For the council the big issue for me is the roads... I pay my council tax and get nothing, I have no confidence in them at all.”

Many seemed to be sticking with Labour, though. Medical student Lucas Wilemshurst, 23, from Avenue ward, said: "I’m happy with the way Labour is going but I don’t think the rest of the country is.

"I would normally leaflet for them but I didn’t have the energy this year. I will be voting Labour as this is a marginal ward. I know some of my friends are voting Green."

Retired Stephen Hutton, 73, said he had voted strategically: “It needed to be done to get Labour out. I voted Liberal Democrat. I would have voted Conservative but they can’t get in in Hull."

That issue of traffic was no more acute than in the key battleground of St Andrew's and Docklands where there was a hive of activity from party campaigners in the late afternoon.

Queues at the mobile polling station in Chanterlands Avenue, west Hull
Queues at the mobile polling station in Chanterlands Avenue, west Hull

Deputy leader of the council Daren Hale, the mastermind behind the city's controversial cycle lanes, is hoping to hold on to his seat against a strong challenge from Lib Dem Tracey Henry.

Attention switched to Avenue and Sutton wards into the evening in a bid to persuade stay-at-home electors to change their minds in the run-up to the close of polls at 10pm.

The Lib Dems are hoping to hold their only seat in Avenue where Labour already occupy the other two seats, which are not being contested this time. In Sutton, Labour's Dave Craker is defending his seat against a strong Lib Dem challenge.

Those key battlegrounds are likely to determine the outcome. Currently, Labour hold 31 of 57 seats, with the Liberal Democrats holding 24 seats and the Conservatives with two.

It means that the loss of just four seats could see the council enter no overall control and Labour's leader Steve Brady out of office.

Lib Dem leader Mike Ross will be hoping for an even more dramatic result, with outright control for their party for the first time in more than a decade and him installed as the council's new leader.

Nationwide, around 5,000 council seats have been contested across 143 councils. There are also 129 seats contested in the Scottish Parliament, 60 seats in the Welsh Assembly, 39 police and crime commissioners. 25 London Assembly seats and 13 directly-elected mayors.

Eyes will also be on the Westminster by-election taking place in Hartlepool. Pollsters predict that the Conservatives could win there for the first time since since the seat's creation in 1974, which would serve a blow to the leadership of Sir Keir Starmer.

In the East Riding, two council by-elections also took place in South East Holderness and South West Holderness.