FOUR amazing GAINS with massive swings in Lib Dem by-election clean sweep

There were four by-elections tonight. All won by the Liberal Democrats in areas of the country where we haven’t been too strong in recent years.

Great to see a Lib Dem GAIN in Gainsborough tonight. The town council seat was won by Neil Cook.


Interesting that the postal vote was such a large proportion of the votes cast. That perhaps tells us something about the importance of going after that vote in our campaigning if we didn’t know it already.

In Tandridge in Surrey, a very convincing hold.

Nice one, Cllr Helen Rujbally and team.

Leaving aside the fact that Alex is going to have to provide video evidence if he’s going to keep going on about one man congas, this is an amazing result in Gosport from a standing start. One hell of a gain from Labour – a 53% swing

I mean that’s nothing to nearly 60% of the vote. Wowsers, Steve Hammond and team.

And in Kent, another sold gain in Maidstone by Rob Field.

So far, tonight, we have had some great results in areas of the country where we haven’t done so well recently.

The last result of the night is now in. And it’s another corker. A gain from UKIP in Torridge with 60.2% of the vote.

Nicely done, Cheryl Hunkin and team.

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

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  • Ian Patterson 30th Nov '17 - 11:49pm

    Gain in Gosport!

  • Ian Patterson 30th Nov '17 - 11:55pm

    Higher result in Gosport!

  • Ian Patterson 1st Dec '17 - 12:05am

    It gets better, Torrington!

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 1st Dec '17 - 12:12am

    Every time I tried to go to bed, we’d win something else! Incredible night!

  • Wow. Just a stunning night. Congrats and thankyou to everyone involved in all of these campaigns.

  • Ian Patterson 1st Dec '17 - 12:18am

    theakes will be pleased at all this (hopefully)

  • Torrington. Now that is a name that sticks in the memory.

  • Weather reports and Postal Vote figures for these places could make interesting reading. Now is the winter of our South content…

  • I’m sure theakes will be able to take comfort in the latest opinion poll from Wales Lib Dems at 5%. Personally I prefer the polls where voters vote, and they seem to be getting better.

  • I was up very early this morning called out for a spot of work, my it was cold, but quickly looked at Britain Elects and was suddenly much warmer, Tandridge and Maidstone expected, ( we did win the ward did we not in 2016), Torrington I am shocked about, happily of course and will find out a bit more later from those on the ground. Thought it would be a landslide but not to us. Gosport the run continues, been a Labour ward for years has it not. Yes a very good night, I will say wow and great etc etc.
    HOWEVER WE HAVE BEEN HERE BEFORE IN QUITE RECENT TIMES. How to get off that 1 and 2% level in those solid Labour areas before a revival can be considered.
    Yes I had a drink of Proseco at 3am to celebrate. 5% in Wales, 7% National poll. We have to move them but……….

  • I’m in shock teakes going all upbeat on me; it’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas.

  • Reporting partial results is gilding the Lily and more than a tad disingenuous. It would be more honest to have votes cast and percentage turnouts before anyone gets too carried away about a massive Liberal Democrat revival building up.

    The game is given away in the Gainsborough result paper. A 10.1% turnout. 213 votes out of an electorate of 5163 is a bare 4% – and no Tory candidate.

    It appears the mood of the electorate at large is still, “None of the Above, and ‘Not today, thank you’ “.

  • The next couple of weeks sees by elections at Wigan, Newcastle Under Lyme, Salford, Enfield (east side of the old Borough), Exeter and Barnsley. What will be the % there?
    Wigan Shevington is a ward we used to win back in the 80’s, tramped many pavements there, then. The result there may put things into better perspective.
    Just to spread a bit of gloom, the results last night do not suggest we shall reduce our record number of lost deposits at national level, recall last time £180,000 of membership funds wasted.

  • Understand that we did throw almost everything into Torrington, good well known candidate, lot of posters, at least two leaflets round the town, heavy canvas, my reporter says they were called on twice. Cannot repeat that in a general, need a parliamentary by election. What seat is Damien Green?

  • paul barker 1st Dec '17 - 12:22pm

    The point is that the Recovery is real, in Local Votes. Since the low point in early July we have been steadily gaining vote share, 10 or 11% in 5 Months. That doesnt guarantee that our performance will go on improving & it doesnt tell us when our National Polling will improve, we just have to wait & see.

  • All this tells us is that we aren’t dead on the ground in some places> and that in some areas we do still have highly motivated hard working teams which is fantastic (mainly in rural or small / market town areas )

    I will be convinced we are on our way back to any hope of break through when we win seats in Islington or Leeds or Wigan or Manchester

  • Sue Sutherland 1st Dec '17 - 4:49pm

    The Gosport gain from Labour is especially satisfying. Is there a group where they can post how they did it?

  • The message seems to be if you work hard, you can win. I’m not sure that was the case during the coalition, then working hard just seemed to save you from total humiliation but not from defeat.

  • markfairclough 1st Dec '17 - 5:37pm

    14th December, Barnsley Metropolitan Borough council, by-election .
    Rockingham ward ,
    candidate, Paul Nugent

  • Tony Greaves 1st Dec '17 - 6:18pm

    “The Gosport gain from Labour is especially satisfying. Is there a group where they can post how they did it?” Err…someone called Chegwyn?

    These are all areas where there is strong campaigning on the ground and people who know how to fight local elections. Not quite summed up as “areas where we haven’t done so well recently” – more “areas of solid long-term activity and activists”? Not to mention Liberal tradition in places… I think the Maidstone win actually makes us the largest party on the Council?

    And I agree with David Raw. These are cracking results but – I ask again – why can’t LDV report them properly?

  • The turnout figures would help to put things in perspective:
    Torrington 26.56%
    Gosport 32.0%
    Maidstone 22.1%
    Tandridge, Westway maybe somebody else can find that.

  • Richard Underhill 2nd Dec '17 - 1:15pm

    “in Kent, another sold gain in Maidstone by Rob Field”
    should this be ‘solid gain in Maidstone’ ?
    Maidstone was a target seat in the election(s) of 2014-2015, but some borough council seats outside the constituency were taken by UKIP. Boundary changes may or may not happen. If they do happen the DUP (founded by the late Ian Paisley) would lose a seat in the House of Commons (first past the post for MPs, STV for the Assembly).

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