Saturday, 4 May 2019

Independents set a trend for local elections

Before the local elections, pundits were saying it was a battle between Conservatives and Independents:
Futures Forum: Sidmouth Town and District council elections > tomorrow: Thursday 2nd May > "The local battle is largely between Conservatives and independents, so keep an eye on that."

And it's the Independents wot won, pretty much everywhere - with this BBC graphic showing a huge gain was from 'others':

England scoreboard

Liberal Democrat1351+704

Local elections: Results in maps and charts - BBC News

It's been quite something across the country:

In Guildford:
Guildford local election results 2019: Lib Dems and Independents hand Tories worst loss ever - Get Surrey

In Lincolnshire:
Election results: Tories lose control to independents - BBC News

In Morecombe and beyond: 

How Morecambe's independents set a trend for local elections

Polish couple running for council seats typify the town’s drift away from major parties that is now being mirrored across the country

Nazia Parveen North of England correspondent
Thu 2 May 2019

The couple have jettisoned the traditional parties to stand as Morecambe Bay Independents (MBI). The MBI was formed in 1987 after a group of local residents were ignored by the town’s mainly Tory councillors when they asked to discuss a way forward for the resort following its steady decline since the 1970s.

A similar story is unfolding across the country, from Lincolnshire to Cheshire East, where unprecedented numbers of independent candidates are standing.

“Nationally, Morecambe Bay Independents are viewed as a model of how you can get into the council and make things happen. You get a lot more influence on the council,” Knight said. “People have always belonged to a party – it’s very tribal. But a lot of time is taken up talking about issues which have nothing to do with Morecambe – it’s party politics. We have already shown what can be achieved when minority parties rule. During the four-year period we had control of the council, an awful lot was done. Politics was kept off the agenda.”

How Morecambe's independents set a trend for local elections | Politics | The Guardian

The Telegraph reports from Bolsover and Ashfield, Notts: 

Local elections: Bricklayer and former community centre manager among independents who stormed to victory

4 MAY 2019 • 3:48PM

A bricklayer incensed by his local council's destruction of a memorial tree and a former community centre manager inspired into politics by watching Question Time are among candidates who stormed the local elections as independents.

Labour councillors were ousted from their heartlands and Conservatives lost some 1,300 seats yesterday - the party's worst local election result since 1995.

More than 900 independent councillors were elected and six councils are now controlled by independents and other parties.

The Telegraph spoke to two politicians who secured big wins at the ballot box about what inspired them to take a stand.

The Labour heartland of Bolsover in Derbyshire was taken over by independent councillors in an unprecedented victory. Ross Walker is one of the newly-elected independents in the district, which has been a Labour stronghold for the past 40 years. The 48-year-old bricklayer got into politics after the council cut down a sycamore tree which had been planted as a tribute to his late grandfather. He was so outraged that he decided to stand as a councillor...

In Nottinghamshire, the Ashfield Independents - a party which didn't exist four years ago - took 30 of the 35 available seats, leaving just three Conservative and two Labour councillors in office. "People are incredibly annoyed and distrustful of the national parties now. I think we have been able to regain trust locally that has been lost nationally. We offered a positive alternative."


No comments: