There were two principal council elections held on 17th March. Labour took a seat off the SNP and we took a seat off the Tories. There were no parish or town council by-election results reported to ALDC.
In the Pembury ward of Tunbridge Wells council we last won a seat in a 2005 by-election. Since then it had been solidly Tory. The Tories put up a candidate from outside the village, who was planning to move even further away and had lost two local elections in the previous 12 months in other wards. We stood Claire Brown who is a local mother of three young children who runs her own business. Labour were expected to run but didn’t and the local UKIP PPC ran a surprisingly strong campaign. We did nothing spectacular and won. Whilst the victory owes much to UKIP’s intervention it continues a trend of by-election success against Tories in recent months, which can be replicated in May.
In the Paisley south ward of Renfrewshire Council in Scotland, Labour took a seat off the SNP . Whilst dropping from 3rd to 5th looks poor, our performance in Scottish local by-elections recently, if replicated in the May Holyrood elections, would give us a better result than in 2007.
We have reported the by-election from the Corporation of London for information. We do not, however, include them in our statistics.
As you receive this copy of Lib Dem news nominations for the local elections in England will have opened. Make sure that you don’t leave it to the last minute to get your nomination papers in – the deadline is noon on Monday 4th April. If you leave it too late then there won’t be time to fix any mistakes and you won’t be able to stand. Comprehensive guidance for ALDC members can be found here.