Archive for the 'By elections' Category

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Local By-Election Preview : December 18th 2014

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

St. James on Kingston upon Thames (Con defence)

Result of council at last election (2014): Conservatives 28, Liberal Democrats 18, Labour 2 (Conservative majority of 8)
Result of ward at last election (2014) : Emboldened denotes elected
Conservatives 1,250, 1,188, 1,082
Liberal Democrats 729, 719, 696
Labour 598, 494, 485
United Kingdom Independence Party 386, 361
Green 212
British National Party 100
Trade Unionist and Socialist 34

Candidates duly nominated: Jack CHEETHAM (Con), Stephen DUNKLING (Lab), Alex NELSON (Green), Ben ROBERTS (UKIP), Annette WOOKEY (Lib Dem)

This year marked the 50th anniversary of Kingston (and all the other London boroughs) following the re-organisation of local government in the capital and as a result have become the longest lasting councils in the whole of the UK (having not been touched by the hand of various secretaries of state creating unitary authorities). Back in those first elections in 1964, the Conservatives won control of the council with a majority of 20 but it was not over the Liberals, it was over Labour as back in the mid 60′s the idea of the Liberals winning a seat on the council, let alone controlling the council, was just a mere pipe dream.

It was not until 1974 that the first Liberals were elected, but just four years later they had been defeated and when they came back in 1982 the Conservatives were still solidly in charge. However that all changed in 1986 when the Alliance came within 2% of winning the popular vote and within two of becoming the largest party as they forced the council into a state of No Overall Control for the first time in the council’s history and it stayed that way until 1994 when on a wave of anti Conservative support the Liberal Democrats polled 42% of the vote and won control of the council which lasted for a whole four years before the Conservatives topped the poll by two and forced the council back into NOC, only for the Lib Dems to win it back in 2002 and then hold it in 2006 and 2010 before finally losing control back to the Conservatives this year so will this been seen as a referendum on the first six months of Conservative control of Kingston since 1982 or will UKIP use it to prove that in Liberal Democrat / Conservative battlegrounds such as the Kingston and Surbiton constituency the ward lies in, UKIP will decide who wins.

Ollerton on Nottinghamshire (Lab defence)

Result of council at last election (2013): Labour 34, Conservatives 21, Liberal Democrats 8, Mansfield Independents 2, Independents 2 (Labour majority of 1)
Result of ward at last election (2013): Labour 1,603 (58%), Conservative 594 (22%), United Kingdom Independence Party 549 (20%)
Candidates duly nominated: Ben BRADLEY (Con), Colin HART (UKIP), Michael PRINGLE (Lab), Marylyn RAYNER (Lib Dem)

Nottinghamshire has for decades symbolised the dominance of Labour, you only have to look at some of the MP’s elected from the county to get an idea of this (Geoff Hoon from Ashfield, Paddy Tipping from Sherwood, John Mann in Bassetlaw, Vernon Coaker from Gedling) so it gives you an idea of the disaster that befell Labour in 2009 when, for the first time in it’s history, Nottinghamshire county went Conservative.

The Conservatives polled in that election 39% of the vote (+6% on 2005), Labour polled a miserly 25% (-10%), with all the other parties picking up the remainder and that 8% swing from Lab to Con saw the Conservatives pick up 10 seats and Labour lose 25 seats with the Liberal Democrats doubling their number of seats matching the Independents and allowing UKIP to win a seat.

So you can imagine what a huge relief it was to Ed Milliband that Nottingham was a Labour gain in 2013, and whilst there was a swing of 12% from Con to Lab the fact that UKIP gained some 16% as well gave everyone cause for concern so the question has to be can UKIP top off what has been an amazing year by winning another local by-election from Labour in a part of the world where (if the Euros were any indication) UKIP rule the roost.

Harry Hayfield

The by-elections tonight will be the last of 2014, but that does not mean I can now pack up shop until the New Year, on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, I shall be reviewing the year in local by-elections and producing a Westminster forecast based on this year’s local by-elections



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Harry Hayfield’s Local By-Election Preview : December 4th 2014

Thursday, December 4th, 2014

Netherfield on Mansfield (Mansfield Independent Forum defence)
Result of last election to council (2011): Labour 26, Mansfield Independents 10 (Labour majority of 16)
Result of last election in ward (2011): Mansfield Independents 444 (51%), Labour 401 (46%), Liberal Democrats 34 (4%)
Candidates duly nominated: Karen Seymour (TUSC), Sid Walker (UKIP), Sarah Wright (Lab)

Ever since the scare that Labour had in 1987 (when the Conservatives came within 56 seats of winning), Labour’s majority in Mansfield constituency has increased to such an extent that it’s position as one of Labour’s safest seats in the Midlands will not be challenged for a long time. The same however cannot be said about the council. Back in 2003, the Independents actually controlled the council with a majority of 4, not the safest margin in the world, I agree, but for the Independents to control a council with such a Labour history was concerning none the less, so when that majority increased to 12 in 2007 needless to say Labour headquarters must have been worried that they could have another 1987 on their hands come the 2010 general election. That situation did not arise as Labour held the seat by 6,000 and in 2011 gained control of the council as the coalition vote collapsed, but this by-election presents us with an interesting question. Last week, UKIP gained a ward from the Social Democrats were no Social Democrat candidate was nominated, this week there is no Mansfield Independent candidate, so could UKIP spring another surprise and put forward the theory that local Independents can (and do) vote UKIP?

Longholme on Rossendale (Lab defence)

Result of last election to council (2014): Labour 24, Conservative 10, Independent 2 (Labour majority of 12)
Result of last election in ward (2014): Labour 715 (43%), Conservatives 554 (33%), UKIP 396 (24%)
Candidates duly nominated: Gary Barnes (UKIP), Annie McMahon (Lab), Mischa Mockett (Con)

Rossendale has really been through the mill in the last decade or so. A completely hung council in 2003 with both Labour and the combined opposition tied on 18 seats apiece, the Conservatives broke the deadlock in 2004 by making eight gains (all from Labour) and retained control for the next six years until the Labour surge in 2011 which saw them gain control in 2012 and retain control this year, however the electors of Longholme may be of the opinion that this by-election isn’t really needed, after all they only re-elected Cllr. McInnes in May and the only reason this by-election is happening is because she was elected as the Labour MP for Heywood and Middleton and as we know, electors have a very reliable habit of punishing parties for unrequired by-elections (Kensington 1988, Ribble Valley 1990 to name but two)

Aveley and Uplands on Thurrock (United Kingdom Independence Party defence)
Result of last election to council (2014): Labour 23, Conservatives 18, UKIP 6, Independent 2 (No Overall Control, Labour short by 2)
Result of last election in ward (2014): UKIP 1,085 (47%), Conservative 683 (30%), Labour 372 (16%), Liberal Democrats 161 (7%)
Candidates duly nominated: Tim Aker (UKIP), John O’Regan (Lab), Eddie Stringer (Ind), Teresa Webster (Con)

Thurrock in 2004 was a typical Essex council, Conservative majority of 7, Labour challenging and a couple of Independents sticking up for local affairs. But by 2008, this part of Essex was being raised as a point of concern, the reason? Four BNP councillors in Epping Forest and one in Thurrock. However by 2012, normal service had been resumed as the BNP lost all their seats and Thurrock became a Labour council (albeit with a majority of 1) with a single UKIP councillor adding to the collection. Nothing to worry about at all. That was until 2014 when UKIP made five gains in the district (two from Labour, three from the Conservatives) and forced the council back into No Overall Control and one of those gains was this very ward. However, when it comes to holding gains, UKIP do have a slight problem. So can they buck this trend and hold a gain?



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The week’s Local By-Election Results : Gains for SNP, UKIP and CON

Friday, November 28th, 2014

East Riding of Yorkshire
Bridlington Central and Old Town
Result: UKIP 401 (31%), Conservative 352 (27%), Dealtry (Independent) 217 (17%), Dixon (Independent) 214 (16%), Tate (Independent) 116 (9%)
UKIP GAIN from Social Democrat with a majority of 49 (4%)
Total Independent vote: 547 (42%)

Howdenshire
Result: Conservative 1,020 (46%), UKIP 891 (40%), Labour 298 (13%)
Conservative HOLD with a majority of 129 (6%)

Willerby and Kirk Ella
Result: Conservative 1,522 (56%), UKIP 699 (26%), Labour 515 (19%)
Conservative HOLD with a majority of 823 (30%)

Scotland
Troup on Aberdeenshire (Con Defence)
Result: SNP 1,159 (46% +6%), Conservative 574 (23% +2%), Independent 391 (16%), Liberal Democrats 141 (6% +4%), Labour 140 (6% unchanged), Green 68 (3%, no candidate in 2012), Independent 43 (2%)
SNP GAIN from Conservative (count of election not known) with a majority of 585 (23%) on a swing of 2% from Con to SNP
Total Independent vote: 434 (17% -11% on 2012)

Midlothian East on Midlothian (Ind Defence from Lab defection)
Result: Labour 1,294 (33% -3%), SNP 1,260 (32% -11%), Independent 780 (20% +9%), Conservative 331 (8% -1%), Green 197 (5%, no candidate in 2012), Liberal Democrat 68 (2%, no candidate in 2012)
Labour HOLD (count of election not known) with a majority of 34 (1%) on a swing of 4% from SNP to Labour

Kirkwall West and Orphir on Orkney (Ind Defence)
Result: Manson (Independent) 647 (58%), Skuse (Independent) 281 (25%), McBrearty (Independent) 142 (13%), Leonard (Independent) 55 (5%)
Independent HOLD with a majority of 366 (33%)

Blackbird Leys (Lab Defence) and Northfield Brook (Lab Defence) on Oxford
Blackbird Leys
Result: Labour 509 (76% -9%), UKIP 91 (14%, no candidate in 2012), Conservative 27 (4% -2%), Green 21 (3% -2%), TUSC 13 (2%, no candidate in 2012), Lib Dem 11 (2% -2%)
Labour HOLD with a majority of 418 (62%) on a swing of 11.5% from Labour to UKIP

Northfield Brook
Result: Labour 401 (71% -3%), Conservative 65 (11% +3%), Green 50 (9% -1%), TUSC 34 (6%, no candidate in 2012), Liberal Democrat 18 (3% -6%)
Labour HOLD with a majority of 336 (60%) on a swing of 3% from Labour to Conservative

The Leys on Oxfordshire (Lab Defence)
Result: Labour 879 (82%, unchanged on 2013), Conservative 77 (7% -1%), Green 57 (5% -2%), Liberal Democrat 30 (3% unchanged on 2013), TUSC 27 (3%, no candidate in 2013)
Labour HOLD with a majority of 802 (75%) on a swing of 0.5% from Conservative to Labour

Charville on Hillingdon (Lab Defence)
Result: Labour 950 (39%), Conservative 929 (38%), UKIP 468 (19%), TUSC 40 (2%), Lib Dem 37 (2%)
Labour HOLD with a majority of 21 (1%)

St. Neots Primary Park on Huntingdonshire (Con Defence)
Result: Conservative 448 (46% +1%), UKIP 337 (34%, no candidate in 2011), Labour 199 (20% -3%)
Conservative HOLD with a majority of 111 (12%) on a swing of 16.5% from Conservative to UKIP

Ashfordby on Melton (Lab Defence)
Result: Conservative 265 (54%), Labour 129 (26%), UKIP 94 (19%)
Conservative GAIN from Labour with a majority of 136 (28%)

Bowydd and Rhiw on Gwynedd (Plaid defence)
Candidates duly nominated: Annwen Daniels (Plaid) and is therefore duly elected
Plaid Cymru HOLD from 2012 (Plaid elected unopposed)

Harry Hayfield



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Local By-Election Preview : November 27th 2014

Thursday, November 27th, 2014

(puffing) My word, (panting) and Hercules thought he had a tough time with his twelve labours. He ought to try local by-elections on for size. Finding the wards that had by-elections this week was a doddle, but my goodness, finding the results last time and the candidates standing for election, wooh!. It can really take it out on a person let me tell you. And yes, your eyes are not deceiving you that is thirteen local by-elections look like with several on the same council at the same time and it’s taken me until around two o’clock this afternoon just to complete the list of nominations. I’ll let you make up your own minds about the areas of the country being contested, myself, I need a lie down and a hot mug of orange squash!

Bridlington Central and Old Town (Social Democrat defence), Howdenshire (Con defence) and Willerby and Kirk Ella (Con defence) on East Riding of Yorkshire
Result of last election to council (2011): Conservatives 53, Labour 6, Liberal Democrats 3, Social Democrats 3, Independents 2 (Conservative majority of 39)
Result of last election in wards (2011) : Emboldened denotes elected

Bridlington Central and Old Town
Social Democrats 1,167, 497
Conservatives 903, 685
Labour 864, 644
Liberal Democrats 173
Candidates duly nominated: John Copsey (Con), Liam Dealtry (Ind), Terry Dixon (Ind), Malcolm Milns (UKIP), Neil Tate (Ind)

Howdenshire
Conservatives 2,640, 2,347, 2,212
Independents 1,013, 326
East Yorkshire Independents 925
Labour 815, 811, 754
Liberal Democrats 421, 386, 353
Candidates duly nominated: Danny Marten (Lab), Clive Waddington (UKIP), Nigel Wilkinson (Con)

Willerby and Kirk Ella
Conservatives 2,300, 2,163, 2,039
Liberal Democrats 1,476, 1,443, 1,324
Labour 801, 705, 682
English Democrats 403, 387, 318
Candidates duly nominated: Mick Burchill (Con), Daniel Palmer (Lab), Robert Skinner (UKIP)

Troup on Aberdeenshire (Con Defence)
Result of council at last election (2012): Scottish National Party 28, Conservatives 14, Liberal Democrats 12, Independents 11, Labour 2, Green 1 (No Overall Control, SNP short by 7)
Result of ward at last election (2012) : Emboldened denotes elected
Scottish National Party 405, 723 (40%)
Independent 441, 344 (28%)
Conservatives 593 (21%)
Labour 185 (6%)
Non Party Independent 95 (3%)
Candidates duly elected: Ann Bell (Lib Dem), Ross Cassie (SNP), Alan Duffill (Lab), Darren Duncan (Green), Phillip Mitchell (Ind), Alan Still (Ind), Iain Taylor (Con)

Midlothian East on Midlothian (Ind Defence from Lab defection)
Result of council at last election (2012): Scottish National Party 8, Labour 8, Green 1, Independent 1 (No Overall Control, SNP and Lab short by 2)
Result of ward at last election (2012) : Emboldened denotes elected
Scottish National Party 1,372, 405 (43%)
Labour 475, 1,003 (36%)
Independent 461 (11%)
Conservatives 379 (9%)
Trade Unionist and Socialist 52 (1%)
Candidates duly nominated: Colin Cassidy (SNP), Euan Davidson (Lib Dem), Andrew Hardie (Con), Robert Hogg (Ind), Bill Kerr-Smith (Green), Kenny Young (Lab)

Kirkwall West and Orphir on Orkney (Ind Defence)
Result of council at last election (2012): Independents 11, Non Party Independents 10 (Independent majority of 21)
Result of ward at last election (2012): Emboldened denotes elected
Independents 213, 16, 162, 215, 283, 30 (60%)
Non Party Independents 476, 42, 34, 9 (37%)
Scottish National Party 50 (3%)
Candidates duly nominated: Laurence Leonard (NPI), Lorraine McBrearty (Ind), Leslie Manson (Ind), Gillian Skuse (Ind)

Blackbird Leys (Lab Defence) and Northfield Brook (Lab Defence) on Oxford
Result of council at last election (2014): Labour 33, Liberal Democrats 8, Greens 6, Independent 1 (Labour majority of 18)
Result of Blackbird Leys (2012)
Labour 737 (85%), Conservative 54 (6%), Green 40 (5%), Liberal Democrat 32 (4%)
Candidates duly nominated: Berk Bektas (Con), Stella Gollier (TUSC), Lesley Mallinder (Lib Dem), Elizabeth McHale (Green), Dave Slater (UKIP), Linda Smith (Lab)

Result of Northfield Brook (2012):
Labour 564 (74%), Green 73 (10%), Liberal Democrat 68 (9%), Conservative 61 (8%)
Candidates duly nominated: Gary Dixon (Con), Ann Duncan (Green), James Morbin (TUSC), Michael Jatt (Lib Dem), Sian Taylor (Lab)

The Leys on Oxfordshire (Lab Defence)
Result of council at last election (2013): Conservatives 28, Labour 13, Liberal Democrats 11, Greens 2, Independent 1 (Conservative majority of 1)
Result of ward at last election (2013): Labour 1,249 (82%), Conservative 116 (8%), Green 114 (7%), Liberal Democrat 53 (3%)
Candidates duly nominated: Samuel Burgess (Con), Steve Curran (Lab), Ann Duncan (Green), Lesley Mallinder (Lib Dem), James Morbin (TUSC), Dave Salter (UKIP)

Charville on Hillingdon (Lab Defence)
Result of council at last election (2014): Conservatives 42, Labour 23 (Conservative majority of 19)
Result of ward at last election (2014): Emboldened denotes elected
Labour 1,572, 1,368, 1,276
Conservative 1,409, 1,354, 1,276
UKIP 1,004
Green 381
TUSC 132
Candidates duly nominated: Cliff Dixon (UKIP), Wally Kennedy (TUSC), Paul McKeown (Lib Dem), Mary O’Connor (Con), John Oswell (Lab)

St. Neots Primary Park on Huntingdonshire (Con Defence)
Result of council at last election (2014): Conservatives 35, UKIP 7, Liberal Democrats 5, Independents 4, Labour 1 (Conservative majority of 18)
Result of ward at last election (2011): Conservatives 1,081 (45%), Liberal Democrats 767 (32%), Labour 545 (23%)
Candidates duly nominated: Carol Gamby (UKIP), Ian Gardener (Con), Angela Horan (Lab)

Ashfordby on Melton (Lab Defence)
Result of council at last election (2011): Conservatives 20, Labour 7, Independent 1 (Conservative majority of 12)
Result of ward at last election (2011): Emboldened denotes elected
Conservatives 470
Labour 420, 394
Independent 342
Candidates duly nominated: Sasha Lee Barnes (UKIP), Michael Blase (Lab), Ronnie de Burle (Con)

Bowydd and Rhiw on Gwynedd (Plaid defence)
Result of last election to council (2012): Plaid Cymru 37, Independents 19, Llais Gwynedd 13, Labour 4, Liberal Democrats 2 (No Overall Control, Plaid short by 1)
Result of last election in ward (2008): Llais Gwynedd 341 (48%), Plaid Cymru 247 (35%), Green 117 (17%)
Candidates duly nominated: Annwen Daniels (Plaid) and is therefore duly elected
Plaid Cymru HOLD from 2012 (Plaid unopposed 2012)



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CON GE15 prices moves up because Rochester wasn’t as bad as many in the blue team feared

Friday, November 21st, 2014

Tories helped by UKIP/Farage’s poor expectation management

This morning’s movement means that the CON price has advanced by 7 seats since SPIN opened its market 11 days ago.

The money’s now going on CON to retake the seat next May

Harry Hayfield’s round-up of all yesterday’s results

Bramhall South and Woodford on Stockport (Con Defence)
Result: Conservative 2,080 (53% +8%), Liberal Democrats 1,502 (38% +5%), Green 197 (5%, no candidate last time), Labour 132 (3% -6%)
Conservative HOLD with a majority of 468 (13%) on a swing of 1.5% from Lib Dem to Con

Uplands on Swansea (Lab Defence)
Result: Independent 671 (33%, no candidate in 2012), Labour 533 (26% -18%), Liberal Democrat 215 (11% -23%), Green 179 (9% -1%), Swansea Independents 158 (8%, no candidate in 2012), Conservative 154 (8% -4%), Plaid 104 (5%, no candidate in 2012), TUSC 31 (2%, no candidate in 2012)
Independent GAIN from Labour with a majority of 138 (7%)

Peninsula on Medway (UKIP defence from Con defection)
Result: UKIP 2,850 (48%), Conservative 1,965 (33%), Labour 716 (12%), Green 314 (5%), Lib Dem 60 (1%)
UKIP HOLD (from defection) with a majority of 885 (15%)

Rochester and Strood (UKIP defence from Con defection)
Result: UKIP 16,867 (42%, no candidate in 2010), Conservative 13,947 (35% -14%), Labour 6,713 (17% -11%), Green 1,692 (4% +2%), Liberal Democrats 349 (1% -15%), Independents 188 (0%), Loony 151 (0%), People Before Profit 69 (0%), Britain First 56 (0%), Patriotic Socialists 33 (0%)
UKIP HOLD (from defection) with a majority of 2,920 (7%)



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Mark Reckless wins Rochester for UKIP with a majority of 7.2%

Friday, November 21st, 2014

But can he be confident of holding on next May and will it encourage more defectors?

In the end the Rochester result was a lot closer than any of the final polls had suggested but the first stage Mark Reckless’s massive gamble has paid off – he’s back again as MP for Rochester.

The winning margin was 7.2% which compared with the gaps of 12% and more that we had from the three final polls. It was much tighter than most people and the betting markets had predicted.

    It did suggest that you have to be cautious with polls where a significant part of a candidate’s support is coming from non-voters who are traditionally the ones least likely to turnout

He was helped by the decision of LAB not to take the battle seriously and put the resources in and by the dramatic collapse in Lib Dem support to less than one percent.

Looking forward there are two questions: is Reckless going to be able to retain the seat next May and will the less than emphatic winning margin act as a deterrent to other potential defectors?

In last week’s Lord Ashcroft Rochester poll the Tories had a margin of 1% when the the sample was asked for their general election voting intentions. But that poll has the UKIP by-election lead at 12%. This looks very tight for next May.

What we do know is that leading UKIP donors have been funding private polls so other potential defectors can test the water before they decide to jump. The Rochester result will put those findings into context.

Mike Smithson

2004-2014: The view from OUTSIDE the Westminster bubble




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Marf on Rochester and Harry Hayfield’s local and Westminster by-election preview

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

PADDINGTON (1)

Bramhall South & Woodford on Stockport (Con Defence)
Result of council at last election (2014): Liberal Democrats 28, Labour 22, Conservatives 10, Independents 3 (No Overall Control, Liberal Democrats short by 4)
Result of ward at last election (2014): Conservatives 1,862 (45%), Liberal Democrats 1,373 (33%), UKIP 538 (13%), Labour 369 (9%)
Candidates duly nominated: David McDonough (Green), John McGahan (Con), Jeremy Meal (Lib Dem), Kathryn Priestley (Lab)

Twenty years may seem like a lifetime in local politics and yet on the surface very little appears to have happened on Stockport during that time. The Liberal Democrats are down two, Labour are up five, the Conservatives down three and the Independents are unchanged, but that doesn’t even begin to tell half the story. By 1996, the Conservatives were on the verge of being wiped out from the council and in 1999, the Liberal Democrats gained control of the council (as they did in Sheffield and holding Liverpool that they won the previous year) but despite a loss in the millennium the Lib Dems retook control in 2002 and kept it until 2011 when the impact of the coalition started to make itself felt as the Lib Dems made six net losses and it continued with three net losses in 2012 but that appeared to come to a pause this year when the Lib Dems stayed static. With Stockport being home to both Hazel Grove and Cheadle constituencies, will the Conservatives be able to prove that they can battle their coalition allies or will UKIP seize a chance and show that they can take votes from everyone?

Uplands on Swansea (Lab Defence)
Result of council at last election (2012): Labour 49, Liberal Democrats 12, Independents 6, Conservatives 4, Ratepayers 1 (Labour majority of 26)
Result of ward at last election (2012) : Emboldened denotes elected
Labour 1,302, 1,207, 1,161, 1,099 (44%)
Liberal Democrats 1,089, 975, 812, 782 (34%)
Conservatives 319, 313, 306, 301 (12%)
Green Party 614, 465 (10%)
Candidates duly nominated: Josh Allard (Con), Pat Dwan (Swansea Independents), Rhydian Fitter (Plaid), Fran Griffiths (Lab), Ronnie Job (TUSC), Peter May (Ind), Janet Thomas (Lib Dem), Ashley Wakeling (Green)

When Swansea was formed in 1995, it was as Labour a heartland as anywhere else in the South Wales valleys. In those first elections Labour polled 60% of the vote and won 57 out of the 73 councillors. Four years later Labour still won an overall majority despite losing ten seats and losing 12% in the popular vote. However, by 2004, things were starting to look dangerous for Labour as they lost control of the council (winning 32 seats) and only polled 33% of the popular vote. They were still able to govern though with thanks to the Independents but in 2008, Labour had a night to forget, because although they only lost another two seats overall, they came within 3% of losing the popular vote as the Liberal Democrats made four net gains and announced that they would seek to form an administration, this time the Independents came on board along with the sole Plaid Cymru member and for the first time since the council was formed Labour were not in charge. However by 2012, the situation was completely reversed. On a 17% swing from Liberal Democrat to Labour, Labour regained control of the council with a majority of 26 and inflicted 11 net losses onto the Liberal Democrats including all four Lib Dems in Uplands, the last seat being won from Cllr. Peter May by just 10 votes and in this by-election Peter May will be trying to regain his seat (but not as a Lib Dem, as an Independent) a pattern that was demonstrated in the 2012 local elections when nine Liberal Democrat councillors held their seats standing as Independents.

Peninsula on Medway (UKIP defence from Con defection)
Result of council at last election (2011): Conservatives 35, Labour 15, Liberal Democrats 3, Independents 2 (Conservative majority of 15)
Result of ward at last election (2011) : Emboldened denotes elected
Conservatives 2,557, 2,307, 2,125
Labour 975, 898, 879
English Democrats 535, 476
Green 351
Liberal Democrats 298, 282
Candidates duly nominated: Clive Gregory (Green), Christopher Irvine (UKIP), Christopher Sams (Lib Dem), Ron Sands (Con), Pete Tungate (Lab)

Rochester and Strood (UKIP defence from Con defection)
Result of constituency at last election: Conservatives 23,604 (49%), Labour 13,651 (28%), Liberal Democrats 7,800 (16%), English Democrats 2,182 (5%), Green 734 (2%)
Candidates duly nominated: Mike Barker (Ind), Christopher Challis (Ind), Hairy Knorm Davidson (Loony), Jayda Fransen (Britain First), Stephen Goldsborough (Ind), Clive Gregory (Green), Geoff Juby (Lib Dem), Naushabah Khan (Lab), Nick Long (People Before Profit), Dave Osborn (Patriotic Socialist), Mark Reckless (UKIP), Charlotte Rose (Ind), Kelly Tolhurst (Con)

UKIP will be hoping that what happened in Clacton doesn’t happen here. When Douglas Carswell defected from Con to UKIP and announced that he was standing as the UKIP candidate, the existing UKIP candidate was booted out of his post. He resigned his county seat in Brightlingsea and said “Vote Lib Dem” so whilst UKIP won the parliamentary seat, they lost the county seat. This time the district by-election is being fought as a referendum on a housing development on the Hoo (part of the same constituency) so will UKIP be able to win both the constituency and the district ward? Well, with some polls putting Mr. Reckless at least 10% ahead it does seem likely which then brings us to the next question. Will John Baron MP (Conservative, Basildon and Billericay) be next to jump ship to UKIP and if so, how many more will follow him and will they follow the examples of Mr. Carswell and Mr. Reckless or will they then announce that they are standing down from Parliament thus meaning that a by-election will not be needed.



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Anybody got any by-election news from Rochester and Strood?

Thursday, November 20th, 2014

Mark Reckless with his “wonderful wife”

Kelly Tolhurst looking a bit strained

It would be great to hear from you on the thread below.

What’s turnout like? How are spirits in the main camps? Any indications that this is other than a big UKIP victory?