Another Thursday night, another Lib Dem Gain

Amazing news from the East Midlands

Congratulations to the amazing Hinckley Lib Dems team.

We didn’t have a candidate in the only other principal by-election yesterday.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in News.


  • John Marriott 30th Mar '18 - 9:48am

    It’s a TOWN Council for goodness sake! Not that congratulations aren’t due – after all, I suppose a gain is a gain at any level. I’m assuming that the other result was higher up the Council league. What will really count are the results in May. Let’s see if the anti Brexit stance brings positive results then. If not, will it be time to change the game plan?

  • Sue Sutherland 30th Mar '18 - 11:23am

    John, if we don’t celebrate our successes then where do we find the enthusiasm to fight on?

  • We need to be careful and correct in our use of language. A parish council is not a ‘Principal Council’ as defined in the Local Government Act 1972. So the Page Moss by-election in Knowsley was not “the only *other* principal by-election yesterday,” it was “the only principal by-election …”

    Still an excellent gain by a great local team in an area where they have not apparently had success in the past. Well done!

  • Congratulations to all involved in The Town Council gain but we have to remember that no-one collects Town Council results, we only tend to hear about them if we win & theres no way we can get an accurate picture of whats happening generally.
    Knowsley is a Lbour stronghold but clearly there are some voters ther who want an alternative, we should be giving everyone the chance to vote for us.

  • John Marriott 30th Mar '18 - 2:19pm

    @Sue Sunderland @Paul Barker
    By all means ‘celebrate’ if it makes you feel better; but be realistic. From my long experience ‘winning’ a Town/Parish by election has more to do with the personality of the candidate and the effort put in than the colour of the rosette they are wearing. As they say, one swallow doesn’t make a summer. As I said, the real test will be in May, when inevitably the effort is spread over a wider area and other factors such as national profile, carry much more weight.

    As for “giving everybody a chance to vote for us”, whilst useful in terms of taking the local and national pulse, achieving a low vote can do more damage both locally and nationally than just not having a Lib Dem candidate on the ballot paper. But, what do I know?

  • Tony Greaves 30th Mar '18 - 3:48pm

    Of course some of us collect Town Council results! But what a pity you could not tell us the actual result…

  • John Marriott 30th Mar '18 - 3:52pm

    Sorry, Sue, I should have written SUTHERLAND. How can we forget the Scots?!

  • nvelope2003 30th Mar '18 - 7:53pm

    The last time the Lib Dems fought Page Moss, in 2012, they got 7% – Labour got 93% in a straight fight. The Greens got 24.2% last time in a straight fight last time. There were 2 more candidates this time to split the “opposition”. The Greens collapsed.

    Some town councils represent quite big towns.

  • paul holmes 30th Mar '18 - 9:39pm

    The Hinckley and Bosworth team, led by Stuart Bray and Michael Mullaney, deserve every congratulation for the second Earl Shilton gain in recent months. They may ‘only have been Town Council’ gains but they are in a Borough Ward the Lib Dems have never won in before even when they ran the Council up to 2015. That makes another real prospect of a gain in the 2019 elections when they are seeking to regain the Borough Council control lost because of the Coalition debacle.

    In my constituency, winning Town Council by elections in previously barren areas and then converting them into Borough gains was one of our routes into later electing the MP and 75% of the Borough Cllrs. All elections matter as long as they are fought seriously and not just as token efforts.

  • In Gainsborough over the past couple of years winning seats on the Town Council have been the way to developing seats and candidates for principle elections. Since November we have won 3 of four seats with new Cllrs bringing “New Blood” to the council. 3 of our District Cllrs from the past 2 WLDC elections first got elected to the Town Council and the 2 County Cllrs that represent Gainsborough were both Town Cllrs firstly. It is no surprise we are still the only foothold of the party in Lincolnshire and have the only principle Council Councillors in the whole County. Well Done to Stuart, Michael and the team and best wishes for the future.

  • John Marriott 31st Mar '18 - 9:31am

    In truth the Gainsborough constituency has always been the strongest area for Liberals and Lib Dems, thanks to people like Roger Blackmore and Lord Andrew Phillips in the 1970s and 1980s, not forgetting people like Peter Turner in the background doing the spade work. However, the dire situation for the party in the county has also had repercussions even in the north west. In fact, David is technically wrong in his assertion about ‘principle’ councillors. There are several ‘Lib Dems’ currently serving on at least two District Councils, albeit mainly as Independents. However, the one remaining Lib Dem County Councillor does come from Gainsborough. And to think that, some twenty years ago, the Lib Dems were the second largest party on LCC and were the largest party on West Lindsey DC. Still a long way to go, David.

  • Peter Watson 31st Mar '18 - 9:44am

    @nvelope2003 “The last time the Lib Dems fought Page Moss, in 2012, they got 7%”
    Before that, in straight races it was 7% in 2011, 16% in 2010, 21% in 2008, … (
    This was not always such barren ground for Lib Dems.

  • John Marriott 31st Mar '18 - 10:58am

    @Paul Holmes
    Chesterfield is the shining example in the East Midlands of how to build up a base ‘from the bottom’. But what happened after Paul made it to Westminster? The problem is how to sustain this dominance over a longer period, and that’s where the Lib Dems tend to struggle. It happened to us in North Hykeham – from nothing in 1987 to control of the Town Council, winning all five District Council Wards and holding one of the two County Council Divisions in 1999. Although we took the other County Division in 2009, today North Hykeham has no County Councillors, no District Councillors (although two former Lib Dems now sit as ‘North Hykeham Independents’) and one official Lib Dem Town Councillor. I bet this scenario has been played out up and down the country in recent years.

    As I have said before, it’s very hard to be an ‘activist’ (organiser, recruiter, motivator, FOCUS producer and major deliverer) and be a councillor, let alone hold down a job and do right by your family as well. At least, that was my excuse.

  • Trevor Martin 1st Apr '18 - 10:56am

    It my Only be Town council By election however from that can come greater things. Here in Faversham ONLY a Town council by election rejuvenated the local party! The person who got elected ran a few Months later for County Council and won the Division.
    From this the team has built and is working hard to produce even more Town and Borough Council wins in 2019.
    Whilst Town/Parish councils are not principal authorities, often it is Town/Parish Council members and meetings that reported in Local Newsgroups and Papers. Great as springboard to principal authorities!
    Well Done to ALL involved in this campaign

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