There were eight principal council by-elections held on 10th September. Labour held one seat and took one off the Greens. The Lib Dems, Tories and Independents each held two seats. In the one Parish and Town council election reported to ALDC the Tories won the seat.
In the Cheadle and Gatley by-election for Stockport council we were particularly keen to win, not just as a fitting tribute to ex-Council Leader Brian Millard who’s untimely death instigated the election, not just because it lies within the Mark Hunters Cheadle parliamentary constituency but also because we lost one of the three seats in 2008 by 17 votes. As you’d expect in a parliamentary target this campaign had all the bells and whistles but was none the less satisfying, particularly squeezing Labour down to 2.9%. This is the second by-election in the new Cheadle constituency this year – the other was Stepping Hill, formerly Maggie Clay’s seat. The two unfortunate but successful elections have allowed us to gather good recent data for about a third of the constituency, which the Tories are targeting, in the run up to next years General Election
In the Market Harborough Welland Ward of Harborough District Council we lost the county seat in June by eight votes. So when one of our district councillors moved and resigned we were glad to hold the seat. Labour failed to stand a candidate so we used both our historic data and Mosaic to identify and squeeze the Labour vote successfully.
In the York City Council ward of Heworth all four major parties fought hard in the seat, which is contained within the York Central constituency. Key to the improvement in the Lib Dem vote was a door-to-door survey preceding the canvass of all households, which picked up over 1,200 pieces of casework, and lots of new deliverers. In a previously unworked Ward we doubled our share of the vote and moving up from fifth into second place collecting deliverers along the way. York have set themselves realistic targets using the by-election to break new territory.