Council By-Election Results
Slightly late posting today as I am recovering from polling day yesterday in Hackney's Stoke Newington Central Ward where I was Agent.
Stoke Newington Central Ward, LB Hackney. Lab hold. Lab 1162 (47.8%, +2.5), Green 783 (32.2%, +3.3), LD 297 (12.2%, -4.6), Con 169 (6.9%, -2.1), Communist 20 (0.8%, +0.8). Swing of 0.4% from Lab to Green since 2006.
Didsbury West Ward, Manchester City Council. LD hold. LD 1439 (55.6%, +8.4), Lab 638 (24.7%, +1.9), Con 336 (13%, -3.6), Green 173 (6.7%, -3.6). Swing of 3.3% from Lab to LD since 2008.
Fenham Ward, Newcastle-on-Tyne City Council. LD gain from Lab. LD 1049 (34%, -11.7), Lab 1025 (33.2%, -3.2), BNP 825 (26.7%, +17.7), Con 186 (6%, -2.9). Swing of 4.3% from LD to Lab since 2008.
Valentines Ward, LB Redbridge. LD gain from Lab. LD 963 (36.9%, +20.1), Con 781 (29.9%, +10.4), Lab 756 (28.3%, -0.9), Respect 112 (4.3%, +4.3). Swing of 4.9% from Con to LD since 2006. Strange numbers are result of an independent coming second in 2006 but not running this time. Apparently the LDs made Gaza a big issue in the campaign in a heavily Muslim area.
So a good night for the LDs except in Stoke Newington where we estimate they deliver 50,000 leaflets (2 addressed direct mails, 5 Focuses, 3 polling day leaflets) - 168 leaflets per vote! Lib Dem campaign was very professional with well-written material, but it was jarringly negative (indeed designed to depress turnout) and personalised when the tone in Stoke Newington politics is quite policy-focused and high-minded, and oddly focused on specific issues on very small social housing blocks in a ward that is 70% street properties.
The Greens looked gutted by the SNC result - to quote commenters on www.vote-2007.co.uk "they threw the kitchen sink plus into this one", bringing in activists from across the country. They seem unable to replicate the 1200 votes they can pull in in neighbouring and more middle-class Clissold Ward in this their number 2 target ward. This is primarily because they have absolutely nothing to say to or offer to working class or ethnic minority voters, which is a bit of a drawback in Hackney.
Congratulations to newly-elected councillor Louisa Thomson who was one of the hardest-working and most dedicated candidates I've ever been agent for.