Last Thursday saw four principal council by-elections take place. The Liberal Democrats in East Cambridgeshire (DC), came close to making a gain from the Conservatives in Bottisham ward. The party’s vote share increased by 9.8% from last May as candidate Steve Aronson fell just 17 votes short of the Tories.
In Northumberland (UA), no Lib Dem candidate was fielded in the by-election in Hexham West, where a non-description candidate made a gain from the Conservatives. The winning candidate had previously served as a Liberal Democrat councilor in the division.
The Tories also suffered a loss in Shropshire (UA), this time at the hands of the Greens, who secured a 14% swing from 2013 to make the gain. Liberal Democrat candidate Amanda Woof came fourth with 7.6% of the vote.
Elsewhere, Labour held their seat in Measham South in North West Leicestershire (DC) with 42.8% of the vote with no Lib Dem candidate standing.
In addition to the principal council elections, Lib Dem Helen Belcher were narrowly beaten in the contest in Emmbrook North ward on Wokingham Town Council. The Conservatives held the seat with 44.5%, just 21 votes ahead of the Liberal Democrats. Elsewhere, the Conservatives made a gain from Labour on Sandbach Town Council, with Andrew Wood polling 24% for the Lib Dems, a vote share increase of 15% from last May.
Four principal council by-elections will be held this week. Janice Asman will be the Liberal Democrat candidate as the party defends a seat in West End North ward in Eastleigh (BC). Lib Dem candidates will also be standing in contests in Hounslow (LB), Bolton (MB) and Coventry (MB). In addition, the party will be hoping to make gains from the Conservatives in Town Council by-elections in Glastonbury and Godalming.