Tag Archives: aldc

By-election update: 13.6% swing from Labour to hold North Jesmond

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)

Just one Council by-election this week in North Jesmond (Newcastle CC). The by-election saw a 13.6% swing from Labour to the Liberal Democrats who comfortably held the seat. Gerard Keating, who has previously served as a Newcastle Liberal Democrat City Councillor, won 52.5% of the vote (an increase of 19.9% on May’s results). Labour were just 32 votes from gaining a Liberal Democrat seat in May’s local elections. This time their vote share fell by 7.3% to come second with 23.6%. The Conservatives came third with 8.6% (-5.9%), UKIP were fourth on 8.3% (+0.7%) and the Greens slipped from third in May to last place on Thursday with 6.9% of the vote (-7.6%).

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By-election update: Pipped to the post

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)

This was a quiet week for by-elections. There was just one Council by-election in Wroxham (Broadland DC). The Liberal Democrats were piped to the post by just fourteen votes in the ‘Capital of the Norfolk Broads’. The Conservative candidate emerged victorious with 400 votes (45%) to take the seat from the Liberal Democrats. Malcolm Springall, the Liberal Democrat candidate, received 386 votes (43.4%) and Labour came third with 11.6%. This result is especially disappointing for the Liberal Democrats as they managed to win a by-election in the …

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By-election update: Staplehurst gain by 6 votes

There were eight principal by-elections this week in Blackpool, Doncaster, Maidstone, Northumberland, Reading, Rhondda, Walsall and Windsor. The Liberal Democrats made two gains, Labour held four seats, UKIP gained one seat and an Independent held one seat.

longhoughtonThe Berwick Liberal Democrats stormed to victory in the rural ward of Longhoughton (Northumberland CC). Kate Cairns won just shy of 50% of the vote to gain the seat for the Liberal Democrats after the death of a long standing and popular Independent councillor. The division which had not seen such a competitive election in a long time saw the Conservatives come second with 23.5%, an Independent came third (13.9%), UKIP were fourth with 9.8% and Labour trailed in last with 3.2%. Campaigning is not easy in the division which is nearly the size of Luxembourg so the local Liberal Democrats made good use of Virtual Phone Banks and had help with telephoning from across the country. They also made use of ALDC best practice resources to run a strong traditional literature campaign. Julie Pörksen, the local PPC who is hoping to succeed Sir Alan Beith, helped lead the by-election effort and ran a popular local campaign about Labour cutting post-16 subsidised transport. Cllr Cairns is a parish councillor and well-known road safety champion and so the campaign also focused on speeding, cycle safety, potholes and parking along the coastal road.

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By-election update: A very near miss

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This week saw nine by-elections in principal authorities – Argyll & Bute, Cornwall, East Dorset, Harrogate, two in Herefordshire, Kings Lynn and West Norfolk, Oxford and Redditch.

In Harrogate Clare Skardon held Hookstone ward for the Liberal Democrats with 51.7% of the vote; an increase of 9.1%. Cllr Skardon successfully managed to squeeze all her opponents’ share of the vote: the Conservatives acquired 32.1% of the votes (-1.8%), UKIP were third with 12% (-4.3%) and Labour came last with 4.1% (-3%). Cllr Skardon puts her …

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By-election update: Lib Dems jump from 4th to 1st to take seat from Tories in Julia Goldsworthy’s Cornish battleground seat

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)There were five by-elections in principal authorities this week (Cornwall, Torridge, Barnsley and two in Cheshire West and Chester) and one deferred election in North Hertfordshire.

The Liberal Democrats jumped from fourth place to take a seat from the Tories in Illogan (Cornwall Unitary Authority). David Ekinsmyth won 23.8% of the vote for the Liberal Democrats; an increase of 10.1%. The Tories slumped to third behind Mebyon Kernow with both parties receiving 18%. The UKIP vote fell by 9.1% to finish fourth (13.4%), Labour came fifth (11.1%), …

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By-election update: Hold in Pendle, Gain in Cheltenham

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)

This week saw eight principal authority by-elections and two deferred elections in Cheltenham and Tower Hamlets.

In Old Laund Booth ward (Pendle BC), Brian Newman successfully held the seat for the Liberal Democrats. Brian received 58.3% of the vote; increasing the Liberal Democrat vote share by 9.7%. The Conservatives vote dropped 10.9% to come second on 36.3%. UKIP failed to gain any traction coming a poor third with just 27 votes and the Blue Party (a breakaway of the BNP) came last with only 13 votes. Lord Greaves …

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Tim Pickstone: This is a rough time, but we need to get back out on the doorsteps this Summer

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)We’ve been searching for inspiring and helpful post-election emails this week. We covered Willie Rennie’s and Maajid Nawaz’s earlier. Here is what ALDC Chief Executive Tim Pickstone sent to members:

This has been, and remains, a tough few days to be a Liberal Democrat.

Losing elections is always tough. But in the last few days every single one of us has lost an election, and a good number of us have lost two.

Again we have had to lose too many hard working Liberal Democrat councillors. In too many cases now wards which were hard fought and won over many years or decades no longer have Lib Dem representation. There are council groups who have played a huge role in our Lib Dem family that either don’t exist now, or are down to a handful of members. Our MEP team that played such a huge role in our success across Britain are no longer with us bar one.

I know just how hard so many people worked and still didn’t win. I know many people will be feeling rough and we need to support each other.

We should, of course, congratulate the 407 Liberal Democrat Councillors (plus one Mayor and one MEP) who have won seats on Thursday. The vast majority of you are ALDC members. Winning anywhere is an achievement in current circumstances. so very well done.

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LibLink: Tim Farron: Let’s extend the pupil premium to young carers

imageOn his recent column on the ALDC Members’ website, Tim Farron has made the case for the Pupil Premium to be extended to young carers:

One of the biggest Lib Dem wins of this Coalition Government has been the Pupil Premium. The Pupil Premium was designed as extra support for kids in our schools who need a little extra help to get the best start in life.

I don’t need to tell you about it; you’ve supported it from an idea in our manifesto to its implementation. I’m preaching

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By-election update: Lib Dems make a gain from Tories in Wantage

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)Last Thursday saw four principal by-elections.

In Wantage Charlton (Vale of White Horse district council) the Liberal Democrats missed out on taking the seat by just 49 votes. The by-election, caused by the conviction of the previous Conservative councillor, saw the Tories hold the seat with 41.9% (-5.3%). Jim Sabbald, the Liberal Democrat candidate, took 38.4% (+2.5%). Labour came third with 11% and the Greens last with 8.8%.

However the by-election on Wantage Town Council caused by the disqualification of the same former councillor saw Jim Sabbald …

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ALDC’s by-election report – 27 March 2014

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)

Six principal by-elections took place yesterday. In Gedling ward (Gedling BC), which is five miles north east of Nottingham, the Liberal Democrats were unlucky not to hold on to the seat they’ve held since 2003. Maggie Dunkin, who represented the ward until three years ago, missed out by just 54 votes. She came second with 28.9% but was pipped to the post by the Labour candidate who won with 32.6%. UKIP who haven’t stood in the ward for seven years came third on 22.8%. Conservatives saw a …

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ALDC’s by-election report – 20 March 2014

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)Four principal by-elections took place yesterday. In Wroxham ward of Broadland Council, the local Liberal Democrats continued their by-election winning streak having first taken a council seat in the ward five years ago. Ben McGilvray came from fourth place in 2009 to become one of the country’s youngest councillors but after moving out of the area a by-election was called. Alex Cassam increased the Liberal Democrat vote to take 48.3% and retain the seat for the party. The Conservatives came second on 34.2%, UKIP (who did not stand last time) took third with 11.2% and Labour finished fourth with 6.3%. The winning team put their victory down to running a high momentum campaign where they put out at least two leaflets for every one of their competitors’. Voters reacted badly to a negative Conservative campaign.

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ALDC’s by-election report 27 February 2014

Just one principal by-election this week. In Scotter ward of West Lindsey District Council, the Conservatives held on in a two way contest with the Liberal Democrats. Keith Panter more than doubled the Liberal Democrat vote achieving 34.3%. Surprisingly UKIP who came second in the County Council elections last May didn’t stand a candidate after coming fourth in a by-election for the ward last December. The Liberal Democrats have been making good progress in this part of rural Lincolnshire recently having won the county division in a by-election last December.

The Scotter team’s campaign focused on River Trent flood warnings, better information …

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By-election update: ALDC report, including sensational Lib Dem victory in Leicestershire

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)There were two principal by-elections yesterday, reports the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors (ALDC).

In Birstall Wanlip ward of Charnwood Borough Council, Simon Sansome won a sensational victory for the Liberal Democrats coming from third place. On his second attempt Simon took 15% of the defending Conservative’s vote and achieved a 7% majority. The Labour vote remained stable at 27%.

The local team, pictured, put their victory down to running a campaign focused on local issues. They knocked on 2000 doors and put out 15,000 pieces of …

Posted in Local government | Also tagged | 29 Comments

ALDC’s by-election report 13 February 2014

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)Last week saw two principal by-elections. In Kingstanding, Birmingham MBC the Conservatives won a shock 138 majority over Labour in what is traditionally a safe Labour ward (the Conservatives last won it in the 1960s). The Tory candidate was elected on his fifth attempt after a heavily localised campaign concentrating on issues affecting individual streets, reminiscent of how the Liberal Democrats have campaigned over the years. The other parties failed to make an impact. UKIP came third on 7.9%, the Liberal Democrats fourth and National Front last. In Richmondshire an Independent candidate retained Reeth and Arkengarthdale ward with a 190 majority over the Tory candidate the only candidates in the by-election.

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ALDC’s By-Election Report – 6 February 2014

ALDC Master Logo (for screen)There were four principal by-elections last Thursday. The Liberal Democrats received disappointing results in the two by-elections they stood candidates in.

There were two by-elections in Clacton-on-Sea. In Peter Bruff ward, Tendring DC the Conservatives held onto the seat with 38.1% of the vote following the death of their councillor. Just 72 votes separated second and fourth place. Labour saw a very small rise in their vote coming second with 25.3% of the vote, UKIP did not stand in 2011 but came third on 21.5% and Liberal Democrat …

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LibLink: Tim Farron’s Winning here blog

Party President Tim Farron has taken to writing a monthly blog on the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors and Campaigners’ website. It’s for ALDC members only, but if you have even the slightest link to any election campaign this May, I’d strongly recommend that you join them. People who do what they say have more chance of winning. They have so many good campaigning resources that they really are invaluable.

Back to Tim’s blog. He talks about why councillors and community campaigners are so important:

You have the track record of action, the record of success and the community knowledge to

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Christmas present ideas from the LDV team and friends, days 6, 7 and 8

We’ve fallen a bit behind with our Christmas present ideas, so here we catch up with 3 ideas.

The first is from party president Tim Farron who wants us to look up. Literally. He suggests that a telescope would be an amazing gift because:

It opens up the awesomeness of everything.

Regular LDV contributor Alisdair Calder McGregor suggests this Doctor Who laden page. He says:

I don’t think I really have to explain why do I?

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Polling Day for the 2014 local elections set for May 22nd

From the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors:

Well we all knew it was coming but now it’s confirmed. A statement in the House of Commons… confirms that the 2014 local elections will be on the same day as the European elections in the UK – Thursday 22nd May 2014. We’ll send out a draft timetable shortly.

The full statement:

Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (Brandon Lewis): As I informed the House on 26 March, Official Report, column 84WS, we published a consultation document inviting views on whether or not we should, subject

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Local Government Conference live blog

Good morning from the Mercure Hotel in Manchester, where Liberal Democrats from around the country are gathered at the Local Government Conference jointly organised by ALDC and the Lib Dem contingent of the LGA.

The agenda for the day is here (pdf). I’ll cover as much as I can of some of the talks, as well as some comments from Don Foster, Gerald Vernon-Jackson and others. There will be a bit of a break mid-morning while I interview Nick Clegg for the site (we’ll publish the interview this week).

I’ll also try and post on the Lib Dem Voice twitter account

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TOMORROW: Join us for coverage of the Lib Dem Local Government Conference

The Local Government Conference organised jointly by ALDC and the Lib Dem LGA group takes place tomorrow in Manchester. As you can see from the agenda (pdf) there is a packed schedule, with numerous MPs including Nick Clegg, Tim Farron and Ed Davey in attendance.

I will also be there, covering things for the site. I’ll have a live blog running here where I will bring you coverage of some of the talks, and hopefully some interviews from some of the participants. I’ll also try and tweet, both from my own twitter and the Lib Dem Voice account.

If you …

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Opinion: Worst past the post? Debating electoral reform for local government

Last year in May, Scottish voters were given the chance to vote using the Single Transferable Vote to select their local councillors for the second time since the introduction of the Local Governance (Scotland) Act of 2004. The Bill owes its life to the Liberal Democrats; it was a key demand for us entering into the Lib-Lab coalition government in Scotland. Almost ten years on from when the Bill became law, STV has done what it says on the tin. It has produced almost proportional results (exact proportionality is pretty much impossible under any system), it has almost doubled the …

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New campaign buttons up and running on Prater Raines and MyCouncillor sites

Thanks to the kind efforts of Tim Pickstone and colleagues at ALDC and Tim Prater and co. at Prater Raines, the newly revived Liberal Democrat campaign buttons have now been tested successfully on websites run using their own systems.

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Opinion: Planning rules

Those of you who have worked your way through the conference agenda and Conference Extra will by now have reached the emergency motions (page 28, since you ask) and will notice that there are four in the ballot: banks are awful, Julian Assange is awful, teacher qualifications are under threat and ‘what have you done with our planning system?’

I paraphrase unfairly, of course. All tastes are clearly catered for and you can make your own mind up about which to vote for if you are at conference.

The planning one (which I have something to do with) is a mild rebuke to government and unusual because ALDC, its sponsor, rarely uses its rights to propose motions. Its mild tone perhaps masks the considerable anger at grass roots level: on 6 September the Government made various announcements about relaxing planning rules, claiming that these will help kickstart the economy. In summary these are

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In other news… Teather on pupil premium, State of play for Welsh Lib Dems & other stories

Here’s a round-up of stories we haven’t had time to cover on the site this past few days…

Teather: Pupil premium ‘changing the way schools think’ (BBC)

The Liberal Democrat MP and minister at the Department of Education Sarah Teather, said the policy is about “changing the whole way schools think”. Speaking to The World At One, she said there is a “scandalous gap” between those from poor backgrounds and those from wealthier backgrounds. ” about focusing money on the individual child regardless of where that child is,” she told Martha Kearney. Under the policy, by this September schools in England

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Opinion: Brand values

There have been a couple of posts recently on where campaigning ideas should come from and whether those campaigns can be directed centrally, first from Scott Hill and then from Robin McGhee And another, which I refuse to link to because it does not appear to publish comments, mocked us for our backwardness in brand management.

Campaigning and not policy is the life blood of Liberal Democrat politics. A policy however right or valuable is inanimate. A campaign establishes connections and energizes movement. That is perhaps why you cannot chose for Liberal Democrats THE campaign they should be waging in March in 2012 or in any other month for that matter. That was the lesson I learnt when an acting Chief Executive of ALDC in the late 1980s.

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Chris Davies MEP writes… To tithe or not to tithe?

Money is tight. The party is far from being flush with cash and there is not enough in the coffers to fund the level of campaigning we need. We rely heavily on voluntary donations, and equity demands that we dust off a recommendation of the 2008 Bones Report – the one calling for Lib Dems at every level of government to give a proportion of their income to support activities that can enhance the effectiveness of the party.

Most councillors already do this, donating 5-10% of their allowances. ALDC even provides model standing orders that require each voting member of a …

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Free casework software coming for ALDC members

A great new benefit is on the way for members of ALDC, the Liberal Democrat body for councillors and campaigners – access to the CONNECT database’s casework system.

Starting early in 2012, all ALDC members will get access to CONNECT’s casework facilities for free (or rather, for no extra charge beyond their ALDC membership subscription). It is a logical extension of ALDC’s similar free provision of its MyCouncillor blogging system and will make a good system available to thousands of councillors.

One of the nice touches of …

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Local Government Association Lib Dems announce election results

ALDC reports:

The Liberal Democrat Group in the Local Government Association has announced the results of its elections to group positions and the various LGA commissioners, boards and panels. Those elected are listed below with the results available here and the full breakdown of the results by stage available here.

Group Executive

Group Leader – Gerald Vernon-Jackson, Portsmouth (Elected unopposed)
Deputy Leader (Policy) – Chris White, Hertfordshire (Elected unopposed)
Deputy Leader (Political) – Dorothy Thornhill, Watford
Group Chair – Jill Shortland, Somerset (Elected unopposed)
Group Whip – Howard Sykes, Oldham (Elected unopposed)

See the full list of those elected at the ALDC website

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Council by-election results: 28 July 2011

Enfield LBC, Bush Hill Park
Con 1108 (44.5; +6.1)
Lab 668 (26.8; +2.0)
Ind 230 (9.2; +9.2)
LD Paul David Smith 177 (7.1; -12.3)
Green 100 (4.0; -6.5)
UKIP 70 (2.8; -4.1)
BNP 61 (2.5; +2.5)
Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” 45 (1.8; +1.8)
The English Democrats – “Putting England First!” 29 (1.2; +1.2)
Majority 440
Turnout 23.83%
Con hold
Percentage change is since May 2010.

Blackburn with Darwen UA, Beardwood with Lammack
Con 1097 (63.8; +3.4)
Lab 572 (33.3; +0.1)
LD Salim Lorgat 51 (3.0; -3.5)
Majority 525
Turnout not known
Con hold
Percentage change is since May 2011.

Harrow LBC, Stanmore Park
Con 1395 (58.1; -0.4)
Labour 509 (21.2; +0.7)
Independent 299 (12.4; +12.4)
LD Sylvia Warshaw 98 (4.1; -9.4)
Green 53 (2.2; -5.3)
UKIP 48 …

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Council by-election results: 21 July 2011

Wokingham UA, Remenham, Wargrave and Ruscombe
Con 850 (65.9; +0.6)
LD Martin Alder 272 (21.1; -7.1)
UKIP 55 (4.3; +4.3)
Lab 94 (7.3; +0.7)
Green 19 (1.5; +1.5)
Majority 578
Turnout 29.38%
Con hold
Percentage change is since May 2010.

Gwynedd UA, Glyder
Plaid Cymru 207 (39.4; -25.1)
LD Doug Madge 194 (36.9; +1.3)
Con 65 (12.4; +12.4)
Lab 60 (11.4; +11.4)
Majority 13
Turnout not known
Plaid Cymru hold
Percentage change is since May 2008.

Truro City Council, Boscawen
Con 469 (40.7)
LD Kate Tregunna 322 (28.0)
Lab 246 (21.4)
Mebyon Kernow 114 (9.9)
Majority 147
Turnout 24.59%
Con gain from LD.

Full by-election info and commentary at the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors.

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