A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Council by-election results

Last night's council by-election/postponed election results:

All Saints Ward, Allerdale DC. Con hold in a split 2 Con, 1 Lab ward. Con 586 (45.1%, -1.6%), Lab 537 (41.3%, -11.9%), BNP 99 (7.6%), Green 54 (4.2%), Ind 24 (1.8%). Swing 5.2% Lab to Con since 2007.

Red Lodge Ward, Forest Heath DC. Lib Dem gain from Con. LD 321 (55.9%), Con 230 (40.1%), UKIP 23 (4%). No Lab candidate. Seat was uncontested Con in 2007.

Bowydd & Rhiw Ward, Gwynedd UA (postponed from 1 May due to death of a candidate). Voice of Gwynedd gain from Lab who did not stand this time. Voice of Gwynedd 341 (48.4%), Plaid Cymru 247 (35.0%), Green 117 (16.6%). Seat was Lab uncontested in 2004.

Bettws Ward, Newport UA (postponed from 1 May due to death of a candidate) 3 Lab holds. Lab 1128/890/789 (52%, -0.7%), LD 586/451/408 (27%, +19.7%), Con 331/260 (15.3%, +7.1%), Plaid Cymru 75/49 (3.5%, -3.6%), Ind 50/40 (2.3%, -22.4%). Swing 10.2% Lab to LD since 2004.

St Julians Ward, Newport UA (postponed from 1 May due to death of a candidate). 3 LD holds. LD 1148/1029/985 (49.2%, -3.5%), Con 581/552/542 (24.9%, +15.3%), Lab 492/467/432 (21.1%, -2.7%), Plaid Cymru 111 (4.8%, +0.3%). Swing 9.4% LD to Con since 2004.

Edwinstowe Ward, Newark & Sherwood DC. Ind hold in a split 2 Ind, 1 Lab ward. Ind 715 (60.9%, +6.7%), Lab 459 (39.1%, +8.9%). Swing 1.1% Ind to Lab since 2007.

Market Drayton Division, Shropshire CC. Con hold. Con 1178 (53.1%, +0.6%), Lab 510 (23%, -24.5%), Ind 362 (16.35), Ind 170 (7.7%). Swing 12.6% Lab to Con since 2005.

Great Dunmow North Ward, Uttlesford DC. Con gain from LD. Con 569 (52.5%, +17.4%), LD 515 (47.5%, -2.3%). Swing 9.9% from LD to Con since 2007.

Implication of the Newport results is that LD not taking Bettws means the council may get a minority Labour rather than LD/Con administration.


Blogger Merseymike said...


The Allerdale result is poor on one level, but the Cons , LibDems and some Independents are in a formal Alliance called 'The Alliance', hence no LibDem. The ward is Cockermouth, a marginal Lake District ward.

Bettws is confused by the formner independent candidate - hard to tell what's going on there. St. Julians is a nice middle class suburb - very 'Middle Wales (!) - and the Tory vote is well up there.

8:41 am, June 06, 2008

Anonymous Rich said...

Luke these results really don't show a great deal. The prove very little and in any case the real fight is probably 12 months away.

One thing I find striking is that Labour MP's are so unprepared about the impact of an economic slump or even a huge recession. When you look at the facts it is looking very likely and I can't the UK escaping this one at all.

While I wouldn't expect a government to shrug off it's responsibilities at the first sign of economic difficulty but there is the impression that Brown is going to press on and hit the tax payer with a raft of new taxes just so he can carry on spending. Most families across the country and cutting back and I would expect Gordon to be doing just that but there is no sign of him cutting spending at all. If anything he is planning to increase it.

I really can't see the public buying anymore tax increases. More protests, riots and strikes are on the cards. If Labour think they can survive this then they truly are deranged.

5:52 pm, June 06, 2008

Blogger Merseymike said...

'Cutting spending'...on what, exactly? Hospitals? Schools?

The Tories have pledged to keep public spending at the same level.

7:09 pm, June 06, 2008

Anonymous Rich said...

Spending needs to be cut but not on our schools and hospitals. They are the last thing we should be cutting.

I think the government or the next government needs to work hard on how we can make government smaller and more efficient. We waste too much money and this has to stop.

We take on some government contracts and I'm always shocked at how many audits they do. They measure everything but the amount they spend measuring often exceeds the budget of the entire project. It just doesn't make sense and they often squeeze contractors so much that the work they get done is poor.

Another issue is the UK's commitment to Iraq and Afghanistan. While I think the UK should be ready and able to protect itself and its allies I don't think these wars are the best way to use our hard working armed forced or the best way to spend tax payers money. From my perspective the wars are just but some sort of peace is many years away....can we afford it?

9:11 pm, June 06, 2008

Anonymous Rich said...

Now Labour are now weeks from bankruptcy has Gordon any plans for nationalization.

Maybe Gordon will issue bonds to save his own skin. Did you know that the terms of the loan make the leader of the Labour party liable for the debt.

Did you also know the Labour party has approached my union for a loan and been refused. Who will bail them out of this one?

9:17 pm, June 06, 2008

Blogger Merseymike said...

Waffle, Rich - heard it all before from the Thatcher and Major governments.

No - you cut public spending and that saving will come from public services, and I don't think people are daft enough to believe otherwise.

I agree about Iraq and Afghanistan, but you have previously talked about higher defence spending in other areas - so no saving there either.

2:23 am, June 07, 2008

Anonymous Rich said...

We do need higher defence spending in key areas but do you know how much these wars are costing. It's not just the cost of our armed forces being there you know. The UK is co committed to a variety of projects being run by KBR. It's makes our NHS budget look like peanuts.

I've been tempted to take on some of the water purification contracts as the money involved would mean retirement after just a couple of years.

My point is that now is the time for cutting back and not spending. It's time to save. If Brown had been elected as PM 10 years ago then I'm sure people would have been more than happy to accept tax increases if they knew that the money would be well spent. We now know otherwise and don't believe anything he says.

Lets face it they are now talking about privatizing hospitals. One of the chief execs is reportedly being paid £1 million pounds up front payment just to take on a hospital. Is this really money well spent and shouldn't we really be asking the question why NHS managers are not able to do the same.

If we're not careful we could be looking at financial meltdown if tax receipts start to fall as a result of a recession. Brown must curb his spending.

6:11 pm, June 07, 2008

Blogger Merseymike said...

Yes, and you have already said that you don't want to curb spending on health and education - they are the big spenders. I fully agree about Iraq and Afghanistan, but the thought that it is possible to cut spending without affecting public services is dishonest.

In any case, I have never been convinced by monetarism, or the unfettered free market.

9:15 pm, June 07, 2008

Anonymous Rich said...

What I really can't understand is why Brown is so hell bent on getting the 42 detention without charge business through. It really defies common sense and why a PM at his lowest point would risk his career over such a pointless bit of legislation.

Personally I think Brown will narrowly win but it's a huge risk at such a crucial point.

11:28 am, June 08, 2008

Anonymous Anonymous said...

A huge amount of money could be saved by cutting down on expenses. I'd love to know just how many millions are spent on unnecessary expenses - dinners, first class train tickets, accomadation costs etc - not to mention all the reports, committees, investigations etc that achieve very little.

5:13 pm, June 09, 2008

Blogger Merseymike said...

This amount of spending is but a drop in the ocean.

9:37 pm, June 09, 2008


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