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Several regions in England and Wales went to the polls on Thursday 2nd May. The results are out from voters in a major set of mayoral and local elections. Most significant were the election of 10 influential metro mayors across England, including in Greater London and all of England’s largest cities. Voters also elected several thousand local councillors, 37 police and crime commissioners, and the 25 members of the London Assembly.



The Conservatives have lost almost as many councillors as they retained and ending up in third place behind the Liberal Democrats.

Labour won more than 1,000 of the 2,660 council seats up for election and nine out of ten regional mayor contests.

These included a very close race in the West Midlands in which Conservative incumbent Andy Street lost his post.

The Conservatives also lost the Blackpool South by-election to Labour. However, Ben Houchen was re-elected mayor of Tees Valley


In total, 20 councils changed hands, with Labour gaining control of areas including Milton Keynes and Hartlepool.

The Liberal Democrats took control of Tunbridge Wells and Dorset.

No party now has control of Basildon and Northeast Lincolnshire councils after the Conservatives lost seats in both areas.

In Oldham, where two Labour councillors quit the party over its stance on Gaza earlier this year, Labour lost control of the council. The party also lost control of Kirklees council. (Source: BBC)



We still await detailed analysis of the impact of the introduction of Voter ID. However, the former PM Boris Johnson, responsible for its introduction, drew attention after being turned away from his local polling station after forgetting his voter ID. He was in a position to vote later after returning with the correct documentation.

Writing for the Daily Mail, Mr Johnson said he attempted to use a copy of Prospect magazine as a form of identification but was turned away by local electorate officials. The government also confirmed it intends to add Veteran Cards to the list of acceptable ID, after some former service personnel were turned away at polling stations.




For the smaller parties it was something of a mixed bag results wise

George Galloway’s pro-Palestinian Workers Party of Britain won four seats - two in Rochdale, one in Calderdale and one in Manchester, where they ousted the Labour deputy leader of the council Luthfur Rahman.


The Greens gained over 70 seats, including 10 on Bristol City Council, an area it is targeting at the general election, where they fell narrowly short of an overall majority. The party has increased its vote share in areas with a high Muslim population, as well in areas with lots of students.  Reform UK Nigel Farage and Richard Tice's party won 16.9% of the vote in Blackpool South, coming third, only 117 votes behind the Tory candidate. This was its best performance yet in a Westminster by-election.



Overall turnout was undoubtedly poor. For local elections in the UK, average turnout was between 30% and 40% of the electorate. This means that a significant portion of eligible voters did not participate. In contrast, turnout for elections to the UK Parliament (such as general elections) has averaged around 66% over the past five elections. (Source Institute for Government)



The results, however, are only partially useful for working out the national picture, because independents feature more strongly in local votes.

There were also no contests in Scotland and Northern Ireland, whilst only police and crime commissioners were elected in Wales.

Labour’s best early result was arguably in the by-election in Blackpool South, held alongside the local contests, which it won with a 26% swing from the Tories.

This is in line with national opinion polls.


In London, Labours Sadiq Khan beat Tory Susan Hall by 11 percentage points in the race for Mayor – a comfortable win, but a far  from the 20-point leads that many of the polls had predicted. Turnout was typically low, at just 40 per cent. Pundits noted though his lead was a significant underperformance against Labour’s lead over the Conservatives in terms of Westminster voting intention.


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