ALDC by-election report – 3rd November 2022

It’s been a busy week for by-elections – with 7 principal council seats up for grabs and some great Lib Dem results in Parish Councils too.

There was a double-vacancy on South Cambridge District Council in Longstanton ward following a double Lib Dem resignation. The Lib Dems achieved the biggest vote share in the election and one Lib Dem candidate was elected. Congratulations to Cllr Natalie Warren-Green. The Conservatives won the second seat in the ward, pipping our Lib Dem candidate Lawrence Zeegan by just 32 votes. It is always gutting to miss out by such a small margin but thank you to Lawrence for standing for us and hopefully you will get it next time!

South Cambridge DC, Longstanton
Liberal Democrat (Natalie Warren-Green and Lawrence Zeegan): 1112 [32%]
Conservative: 960 [28%]
Labour: 677 [20%]
Independent: 422 [12%]
Green: 254 [7%]

Next we move to Salisbury where we had a fantastic double victory. First of all on Wiltshire Council where newly elected Cllr Sam Charleston won Salisbury St Paul’s ward from the Conservatives – beating them into third place and increasing the Lib Dem vote share by 34%. Congratulations to Sam and the team. A stonking result!

Secondly we also won Salisbury St Paul’s ward on Wiltshire City Council – again gaining from the Conservative and pushing them down to third place. Congratulations to Cllr Lynne Blackwood on picking up 60% of the vote and a great win.

Wiltshire UA, Salisbury St Paul’s
Liberal Democrat (Sam Charleston): 813 [64%, +34%]
Labour: 237 [19%, -3%]
Conservative: 213 [17%, -15%]

Wiltshire City Council, Salisbury St Paul’s
Liberal Democrat (Lynne Blackwood): 760 [60%]
Labour: 279 [22%]
Conservative: 229 [18%]

On Croydon LBC the Conservatives held Selsdon Vales & Forestvale despite a big drop of over 20% in their share of the vote. Well done to Lib Dem candidate George Holland for making sure there was a Lib Dem on the ballot paper. It is not a ward we contested in the last election so it was great to stand a candidate this time.

Croydon LBC, Selsdon Vales and Forestvale
Conservative: 983 [46.3% -21.2%]
Green: 530 [24.9%, +8.8%]
Labour: 372 [17.5%, +1.0%]
Independent: 168 [7.9%, from nowhere]
Liberal Democrat (George Holland): 72 [3.4%, from nowhere]

On Moray Council in Scotland the SNP took Buckie ward from the Lib Dems. This was a slightly unusual by-election as the Lib Dems won it in May’s local elections uncontested. However the winning Lib Dem councillor subsequently resigned and 5 candidates contested the by-election. Thank you to Les Tarr for standing and making sure voters still had a Lib Dem option on the ballot paper.

Moray Council, Buckie
SNP: 1,172 [48.9%]
Conservative: 879 [36.7%]
Labour: 239 [10%]
Liberal Democrat: (Les Tarr): 67 [2.8%]
Independent: 38 [1.6%]

There were two further by-elections on Thursday night that were not contested by the Lib Dems. On Nottinghamshire County Council and Independent gained Eastwood ward from the Conservatives. On Litchfield DC Labour gained Chasetown ward from the Conservatives.

A full summary of all results can be found on the ALDC by-elections page here.

* Charles Quinn is Campaigns Organiser for ALDC and a local councillor in Hull.

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This entry was posted in Council by-elections.


  • Ian Patterson 4th Nov '22 - 7:19pm

    Are we going to pass over in near silence that we lost 2 out of our 3 seats yesterday. Something odd occurred in Cambs when our second candidate was passed over in favour of the top Tory, with them being at either end of the ballot paper?
    Also we were well and truly demolished in Moray by SNP.

  • Chris Moore 4th Nov '22 - 8:08pm

    Moray: special case: previous LD incumbent elected unopposed in a usually no-hoper seat.

  • Spectacular win in Wiltshire. Moray was always going to be a tough ask. But the loss in South Cambridgeshire is alarming as it is a top target seat. So much for Tories ready to switch their votes to us.

  • Robert Leslie 5th Nov '22 - 8:22am

    Moray is one of those black holes. In the
    he last few Westminster and Holyrood elections we have lost our deposit. The last time we had a counceior in Moray was in 2007
    In May a member who recently moved in to Moray and my local branch which takes in part of Moray found 6 candidates none of whom had a hope of being elected. Since May a branch has been formed . In Buckie there were 3 candidates nominated for 3 positions and so we ended up with a councelor who when he stood had expected to be a name on a ballot paper. He wasn’t able to reconcile the demands of his job as councilor with those of his employment and so resigned.

  • John Bicknell 5th Nov '22 - 8:28am

    Very different results in Salisbury and South Cambs – it is often, though not always the case, that a party in power locally get punished for controversial local decisions, triggering a result that seems to run counter to the prevailing national political tide.

  • Lloyd Harris 5th Nov '22 - 11:22am

    For transparency the full South Cambs result was:
    578(E) Natalie WARREN-GREEN (Lib Dem)
    566(E) Tom BYGOTT (Con)
    534 Lawrence ZEEGEN (Lib Dem)
    422 Debbie POYSER (Indi)
    411 Dan GREEF (Lab)
    394 Khadijeh ZARGAR (Con)
    266 Labour candidate
    169 Green candidate
    85 Green candidate
    3 Spoilt

  • Patrick Coleman 5th Nov '22 - 5:57pm

    The references to “Wiltshire City Council” should read “Salisbury City Council”?

  • I have some some sympathy with Ian Patterson’s concern about limited comment on losses but Thursday’s by-election scene was messier than most – leaving aside people being elected as Aldermen in the City of London! The Moray result was more predictable than most. What is not predictable is where in May elections some paper candidate, somewhere in the country, will get elected because of failure to put in nominations by opponents. It is a relatively small risk but it happens.
    In South Cambridgeshire it appears that the by-election was presented by others as a referendum on the congestion charge.
    One curious statistic – out of 27 contests since the beginning of October, Labour’s percentage change , up or down, win or lose, was between 0.1% and 3% in 8 of them. I think they would prefer more volatility!

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