ALDC’s By-Election report – 11 October 2018

Yesterday saw 5 seats up for re-election, but with only 2 Liberal Democrat candidates it was the independents who did best, with 2 seats being gained from Labour! With Labour having another bad night, it shows how important it is for us to take advantage and make their loss our gain. Since May we’ve had the strongest by-election results of any party but we must stand candidates everywhere to give ourselves the best chance of winning.

Halton UA, Ditton – Labour Hold

LD David Coveney 97 [11.1%; +11.1%]
Con 135 [15.4%; +15.4%]
Lab 644 [73.5%; +11.6%]
[Ind 575-38.1%; -38.1%]

Starting with our best result of the night, with the Liberal Democrats standing for the first time since 2008, candidate David Coveney put in a great effort to come away with a vote share of 11.1%. This positive result shows a renewed interest in the Liberal Democrats in the area and has positive signs for candidates nationwide and should give added hope and drive to all.

Warrington UA, Penketh and Cuerdley – Independent gain from Labour

LD David Crowther 100 [4.6%; -3.3%]
Con 479 [22.1%; -19.2%]
Lab 691 [31.8%; -19.0%]
Green 47 [2.2%; +2.2%]
UKIP 69 [3.2%; +3.2%]
Ind 784 [36.1%; +36.1%]

Despite suffering a small loss of 3.3%, Liberal Democrats David Crowther still put on an impressive performance in an election dominated by the new comer Independent Geoffrey Fellows who swooped in and took 36.1% of the vote, defeating Labour’s chairman of the Momentum group in the town Kenny Watson. The shock result saw Labour lose 19% of their vote share and the Conservatives lose 19.2%, highlighting the impressive showing of Crowther to suffer a much smaller loss.

Adur DC, Southlands – Labour gain from UKIP

Con 395 [40.5%; +10.6%]
Lab 448 [45.9%; +16.9%]
Green 132 [13.5%; +13.5%]
[LD 69 [9.8%; -9.8%]]
[UKIP 52 [31.2%; -31.2%]]

Now to the first of our wards without a Liberal Democrats candidate and with UKIP not standing a candidate to replace their resigned candidate, a closely fought battle saw Labour defeat the Conservatives and Greens by taking 45.9% of the vote. This results adds further misery to a year for UKIP that has seen them lose a net of 4 seats since May, having held the seat in Southlands since 2012.

Hartlepool UA, Hart – Independent gain from Labour

Con 200 [13.8%; -3.4%]
Lab 582 [40.2%; +1.5%]
Green 27 [1.9%; +1.9%]
Ind 637 [44.1%; +0.1%]

A second loss for Labour again comes from an Independent in the form of James Brewer. A battle that only saw the Conservatives lose votes was fought closely by the Brewer and Labour in an area that has traditionally been a stronghold for Labour, signaling a disappointing result in a disappointing year that has seen Labour lose a net of 4 seats since May. 

West Lancashire BC, Tanhouse – Labour Hold

Lab 464 [72.3%; -12.8%]
Ind 129 [20.1%; +20.1%]
Con 49 [7.6%; -7.3%]

The final election of the night saw Labour hold their seat in Tanhouse, however not all that easily with a loss of 12.8% of votes from the last local election in 2018. This diminishing support of Labour shows that under current scenarios, Labour are vulnerable and may be there to be exploited in upcoming by-elections!

Next week sees just 2 by-elections taking place in Hackney LB and Oxfordshire CC, both with Liberal Democrats candidates standing. Good luck to our candidates and see you next week!

* ALDC is the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors and Campaigners

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This entry was posted in News.


  • I understand ALDC have to put up a chirpy interpretation of results – but to talk about a result of 4% , and an almost halved vote, as impressive is simply self deluding.

  • A very poor result, though, @David Raw, for your beloved Corbynite Labour party. Impressive might be stretching it a bit but to withstand what was clearly a strong independent challenge better than the other parties is good.

    People may well have seen that Corbyn’s leader rating is down to net 42% dissatisfied and 72% are dissatisfied with the way the Government are running the country – the last time it was above 70% being in December 2009 under Gordon Brown.

    Meanwhile there are good straws in the wind for the Lib Dems. Averaging above 10% in the polls, and virtually every local by-election showing increased vote share – sometimes substantially with impressive results in as places as different as Chesterfield and Winchester. Sometimes though there are less good results for us and history shows that we won’t take off in the polls until we achieve a parliamentary by-election win.

  • Peter Watson 13th Oct '18 - 10:32am

    “The shock result saw Labour lose 19% of their vote share and the Conservatives lose 19.2%, highlighting the impressive showing of Crowther to suffer a much smaller loss.”
    Errr, the figures above show he started on 7.9% so on that basis polling zero would have been “a much smaller loss”!
    This ranks with claiming the 2018 local elections as the best result in 15 years as the sort of self-delusion pointed out by David Raw.
    In Penketh and Cuerdley it seems the Lib Dem vote share declined by 42%, the Conservatives by 46% and Labour by 37%, so (based on vote share and assuming a similar turnout to the previous election) it looks like the independent drew votes widely from the other three parties but perhaps proportionally more from Labour’s opponents than Labour itself.

  • Michael1, David Raw’s love has been the Liberal party and the Lib Dems for over 40 years since he won his seat on South Lakeland District Council in 1973, and your cheap jibe does you no credit whatsoever.

  • Guys, better by far not to put in upbeat tempo to things where it’s not merited. If 11% (97 votes cast!) is a good result. …

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