There were three principal council by-elections held on the 12th November. The Tories gained two seats, one from an Independent and one from the Lib Dems. In the only Parish and Town council election result reported to ALDC the Lib Dems held the seat.In the Totnes Bridgetown Ward by-election for South Hams District Council in Devon we held a seat in a split ward.  Our candidate was well known as the local community bus driver, and this time there was no Independent.  We concentrated on canvassing and then getting our supporters to turn out.  In contrast the Tories just didn’t work as hard and knocked-up every single house regardless of voting intention.
In the Shepway council seat of New Romney Coast in 2007 we narrowly won both seats by 20 votes over the Tories. But by September one of our councillors had defected to the Tories, one of a number of defections from the group in recent years. It was this “defected” councillor’s resignation that caused the by-election.  Technically a loss to the Tories but it felt like a Tory hold.
Most active campaigners will be preparing their Christmas focuses and perhaps Christmas cards and calendars as well. This is a really good time to include some direct mail. You could perhaps a personal “blue” letter into the envelope with your Christmas cards. Why not deliver to your “pool” along with your calendars with a New Year , new politics message?Calendars are particularly useful as they emphasis how we can help and be genuinely, really useful.  Many people keep them and pin them to notice boards at home or work, which gives them a permanent reminder of the local Liberal Democrat team.
Key features
·    Full calendar for 2010
·    Dates of advice surgeries highlighted on the calendar – if you don’t have surgeries you could use this space to tell people what to do if they need help from their local Liberal Democrat team (you could also colour in the term dates on the calendar as well if you wished)
·    A place to put in the contact details for local councillors, MP, PPC or MEP
·    Contact numbers for key local services – this is often one of the main reasons keep our calendar over any others they might get.
Templates are available on the ALDC website for members.

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