Tag Archives: local elections 2016

Former Cardiff City Council leader Rodney Berman aims for Council seat in May

Five years ago, the Liberal Democrats ran Cardiff with 35 of the 68 seats on the Council. In May 2012, they lost more than half their seats, mainly due to a backlash against the UK coalition government. Then Council leader Rodney Berman lost his seat.

There are signs of a reversal of fortune, though. In September, Robin Rea saw a huge increase in the Lib Dem vote to win a by-election in the city’s Roath ward.

Every council seat in Wales is up for election in May and Rodney has just been selected as the candidate for the Penylan ward.

He told Wales Online:

It’s a much better campaign picture for us than it has been for a number of years. We have been winning council by-elections up and down the country, we had a remarkable victory in the Richmond Park by-election and at the same time support for Labour is dropping.

“When you go out there you have people who are not impressed by Jeremy Corbyn and the way Labour is fighting nationally and locally. I think there’s a great opportunity for us, particularly as we’re the largest opposition party at the moment and we’re the only party that’s ever held leadership of the council.

“It’s not just the national impact of Labour but it’s the local impact of infighting. People are despairing at the local councillors.

“We have never had so many resignations from a ruling group and so many councillors deciding they’ve had enough.”

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Nice to see our candidates being properly thanked

The Party has been pretty bad at saying thank you to people who fly the flag for it. In recent years, Nick Clegg did try to remedy that by phoning candidates and campaigners and members of the House of Lords did a lot of that in the wake of last year’s General Election.

It’s good to see that Tim has written to them as Jerry Lonsdale tweeted the other

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Tim Pickstone writes… 45 gains must only be the start

For the first time in quite a few years Lib Dems in many areas have spend the post-election weekend in a good mood. 45 net gains in the English council elections ain’t bad, the first time we’ve made gains in local elections since 2008. Coupled with some great results in Scottish constituencies, many Lib Dems have spent the weekend smiling.

The good news is far from universal. I know that colleagues in London and Wales will be devastated by the results and losses. Behind the gains in many areas are colleagues who lost seats or missed out on gains. Many places we didn’t win will have moved forwards as a springboard for future gains.

Thursday’s success is down to the hard work of Lib Dem activists up and down the country. Small teams working long and hard to win individual wards with an enormous amount of dedication, time and energy given freely to the party. Thank you to everybody who contributed to this success.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 23 Comments

Progress for Lib Dems in local elections

 

The landscape of British politics has just shifted a small step towards the progressive stance of the Liberal Democrats. The #LibDemFightback is truly underway. This time we gained more seats than any other party in England. This time we gained Edinburgh Western from the SNP in Scotland. And this time we became the only opposition to the Labour party on Manchester council.

Our status as the part of communities has truly been backed by voters, and so thousands of voters now have a Liberal Democrat fighting their corner. Even in the areas where we have not made gains, the campaigns which we are delivering for our local people are truly inspiring.

We have turned the tables on the Tories since the last election. The Tories have lost the most council seats, the Lib Dems have gained the most. None of us knew for sure what the Lib Dems had achieved in coalition, until the Tories spent over fifteen million pounds and a knighthood on going it alone.

Posted in Op-eds | 31 Comments

John Pugh MP writes…Two lessons from Thursday

Southport councillors 2016In Southport last Thursday we did something no party has ever done before in Southport’s history- won all the council seats by healthy margins. Not everyone knows where Southport is but its on the northern tip of the Merseyside region on the Lancashire coast. On Thursday I was puzzled when contacted by the press department expressing worry about the defection of one of my councillors. It turned out it was a bloke in Stockport who had defected. Easy mistake to make if you are from London.

Southport is part of Sefton MBC which has big wards averaging 12,000. During the Coalition most of Merseyside fell like dominoes to Labour including the Sefton seats outside Southport leaving us (Southport) an isolated fortress. This year it was different with Richard Kemp and Kris Brown spearheading a heroic revival in Liverpool and gains made in Knowsley. The only sadness was that in some other areas of Merseyside where we had taken successive kickings in previous years the will to win and the belief that we could was not there. Hopefully that won’t be the case in 2018 or in the counties in 2017.

Conclusion number one therefore is that the atmosphere is changing but more self-belief is needed.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 15 Comments

Liberal Democrat success in Liverpool

I tend not to write pieces for political websites as I don’t consider myself a great writer and often shy away from the challenge.

However, I couldn’t resist an opportunity to talk about, and thank our many volunteers, for the excellent results we had in Liverpool on Thursday night and Friday morning.

First, a bit of context.  When I became Chair at the end of 2014, the Liberal Democrats in Liverpool were facing an enormous challenge.  Once the largest Lib Dem groups in Europe could soon face having just one councillor left with Erica Kemp CBE. As brilliant as she is, I’m sure she wouldn’t have enjoyed the council on her own.  So we put in place a strategy to identify a number of different wards where we could hold and finish a strong second – not just spread our resources too thinly across the city.  We decided that a huge door-knocking effort would be to key to success alongside lots of hard hitting leaflets.  The result was holding on to Richard Kemp CBE with an increased majority and a good result in our target wards going forward.

A year on, nearly 11,000 doors knocked and hundreds of thousands of leaflets delivered we have reaped the rewards of our strategy.

Richard Kemp secured 21.1% of the Mayoral vote (up from 6% previously), finishing second and cutting into the ‘gutter politics’ Labour Mayor’s vote, and finishing well above the Greens.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 10 Comments

Great election results for LDV team members

Two members of the LDV team were standing for election on Thursday.

Joe Otten has faced the electorate two years running. He was up for election at the end of his four year cycle last year and Sheffield had all-ups this year after new boundaries came in.

The result was impressive:

Joe Otten result

The three Liberal Democrats were 2000 votes ahead of their nearest Labour rivals. That’s a vote of confidence if ever there was one.

Joe wasn’t so lucky in the Police and Crime Commissioner elections, but he put up a good, …

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