ALDC by-election report 28th July

Another week goes by, another round of up all things By-elections goes live. A noticeably quiet week for principal by-elections with one only two being contested across the country. However, a very action-packed agenda on the Town Council front and more specifically, Town Council by-elections in Westhoughton, three in one evening!

As Liberal Democrats we take Town and Parish elections extremely seriously. Community politicians are the beating heart of our democracy, and we pride ourselves on representing our communities as close as possible to the people that we represent.

So here we have it one hold, one gain and one near miss rounds up a great evening for the local Liberal Democrat team in Westhoughton. Alison Jackson or should I say councillor Alison Jackson gained Ward Hoskers and Hart ward, whilst Linda Maher comfortably held onto Central ward. Commiserations go out to Ryan Hough who was pipped to the post by only 29 votes, it was nearly a perfect night for the local Liberal Democrat team!


Westhoughton TC, Hoskers and Hart

Liberal Democrats (Alison Jackson): 137
Labour: 90
Conservative: 89
Independent: 64


Westhoughton TC, Central

Liberal Democrats (Linda Maher): 276
Labour: 171
Conservative: 129
Independent: 87


Westhoughton TC, White Horse

Conservative: 415
Liberal Democrats (Ryan Hough): 384
Labour: 208
Independent: 52
Green: 21


Over to the two principal authority elections then. On Colchester BC Keiron Franks secured a commendable second place with a distinctive vote share increase but was unfortunately pipped to victory by the Conservatives. Thank you Keiron Franks for providing a credible alternative in Lexden and Braiswick ward. On Northeast Derbyshire DC, Nadine Dart was on the ballot paper for the Liberal Democrats. We extend our utmost gratitude for standing for the Liberal Democrats but Labour held onto the seat.


Colchester BC, Lexden and Braiswick 

Conservative: 1372 [63.7%, +11.8%]
Liberal Democrat (Kieron Franks): 621 [28.8%, +6.6%]
Labour: 251 [7.5%, -7.4%]


North East Derbyshire DC, Pilsley and Morton

Labour: 806 [65.9%,+34.6%]
Conservative: 361 [29.5%, -14.4%]
Green: 34 [2.8%, from nowhere]
Liberal Democrat (Nadine Dart): 22 [1.8%, -8.9%]


* Paul Heilbron is a Campaigns and Communications Intern at ALDC

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  • Ian Patterson 29th Jul '22 - 8:38pm

    Pace the Colchester result, we were not pipped at the post. The Tory candidate won by a near 35% majority. Weren’t we once more competitive in Colchester in the Alliance days?

  • @ Ian Patterson “Weren’t we once more competitive in Colchester in the Alliance days?

    Facts, long after the Alliance : Colchester elected a Lib Dem MP in 1997, 2001, 2005 and 2010. The seat was lost in 2015, the vote share falling from 48% in 2010 to 27.5%. It fell again to 17% in 2017 (third place) and yet again to 13.9% in 2019 (third place).

    The District Council result in North East Derbyshire is also disturbing. A fall from 10.7% to 1.8%.

    Does the party ever hold a post election inquest……. or is it glossed over ?

  • Not sure what Ryan Gough’s result had to do with Colchester. Whatever, an impressive set of results from Bolton Westhoughton, where some people are clearly adept at the art of resources allocation.

  • Ian Patterson 30th Jul '22 - 12:29am

    @ David Raw. I had forgotten we had Colchester seat, which is why my recall slipped to the Alliance period. Not withstanding that, it was a comfortable Tory win in the by election.

  • Alex Macfie 30th Jul '22 - 7:59am

    Apropos the Colchester result, the increases in Tory and Lib Dem vote shares are much higher than the decrease in Labour share. Where did the additional votes come from. Or to put it another way, who didn’t stand this time around? Always a good idea to include this infformation.
    Of course the by-election ward is only a small part of the Parliamentary constituency ,so the result there doesn’t necessarily say much about how we would do in the rest of it. Maybe that Ward is safe Tory. Even in our safest seats there are bits that won’t budge from our opposition (I should know, I live in one such Ward). Again who didn’t stand this time may be relevant. If it was, say, UKIP or Reform UK Ltd, then their vote would mostly have gone to the Tories.

  • If you want to know how we’re doing in Colchester – or anywhere else – just look it up. Google is your friend!
    So, in May, with one third of the council up for election, we got 29.1% of the vote (+9.4), making us the second party in terms of both votes and seats. We gained 3 off the Tories – including the Tory leader’s seat – but lost one to Labour. The council is now:
    Tories 19
    LibDems 14
    Labour 13
    Green 3
    Ind 2
    When the dust cleared, we kicked out the Tory/Ind coalition and we now lead a LibDem/Labour/Green one.
    So in short the local party seems to be doing fairly well, in terms of its slow recovery from 2015. Yes Thursday’s result was disappointing, but I understand that that ward has always been heavily Tory. It was always going to be a long way back from 2015, but they’re clearly doing the right things.

  • Kevin Hawkins 31st Jul '22 - 10:41am

    Here’s the longer term view for the last fifty local by-elections.

    Vote share: (The equivalent data for the fifty by-elections up to the end of June is given in brackets).
    Labour 35.3% (36.2%)
    Conservatives 29.9% (28.7%)
    Liberal Democrats 16.3% (16.3%)
    Greens 5.9% (7.9%)
    Others 12.6% (10.9%)

    Gains and losses are:
    Labour: Net gain of seven: 8 gains, 19 held, 1 lost
    Lib Dems: Net gain of seven: 7 gains, 1 held, 0 lost
    Greens: Net gain of two: 2 gains, 0 held, 0 lost
    Residents: No change: 0 gains, 1 held, 0 lost
    Health Concern: Net loss of one: 0 gains, 0 held, 1 lost
    Independents: Net loss of four: 2 gains, 3 held, 6 lost
    Conservatives: Net loss of twelve: 1 gain, 9 held, 12 lost

    Labour won 27 seats, Conservatives 10, Liberal Democrats 8, Independents 5, Greens 2, Residents 1

    This data is for the most recent 50 by-elections in England & Wales (5th May to 28th July). Parish/Town councils are not included. Seats won adds up to 53 because of some double elections on May 5th.

  • Kevin Hawkins 31st Jul '22 - 10:44am

    Correction – Conservative numbers should read Net loss of eleven.

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