The bookies are backing the Tories to regain control of the council in the local elections, but the two main parties have dismissed the predictions.

Ladbrokes predict Lord True’s Conservative party will breeze through the ballot, putting the odds at 1/50 for them to get re-elected.

The Liberal Democrats, who lost control to the Tories in 2010, were not given such favourable odds, with their chance of winning 20/1.

Matthew Shaddick, head of political odds at Ladbrokes, said the Lib Dems should focus on neighbouring Kingston, where they were given a 5/1 chance, compared with 1/2 for the Tories.

He said: “We see very little prospect of anything other than a comfortable Conservative win here, probably with them winning quite a few extra seats from the Liberal Democrats.

“It would be a huge shock if the Tories were to lose control of Richmond, given the Liberal Democrats’ current national polling scores.”

The odds were calculated using information from 2010 results, national opinion polling, trends in betting from similar contests and news issues in the area.

Richmond’s Lib Dem leader Councillor Stephen Knight said: “Ladbrokes have got their analysis seriously wrong.

“The Liberal Democrats are fighting hard to regain control of Richmond Council and receiving a warm response on the doorsteps.”

Lord True, leader of Richmond Council, said he was confident his party would win the election on May 22, but agreed the odds were unrealistic.

He said: “We are in a local election and it is a tight election. People think that we have done a good job but quite frankly those odds are ridiculous.

“Nonetheless, I think we will win, but those odds are bizarre.

“Nobody should be complacent. You have got to earn the trust of the public and we will be going out to do that right up until the election.”

The chance of Ukip winning a seat was given 33/1 odds, while Labour were marked at 20/1 for a seat and the Greens at 25/1.