This week saw seven local by elections. The main winners were the Conservatives with 3 gains, including one from Labour in a seat the Tories had never won before, they also had a spectacular victory in Epsom where the Tories finished 5th in 2013, but won this week.
Local By Elections 19/11/2015
Watton (Norfolk) Con 822 Ind 793 Lab 105 Green 81 – Con GAIN from UKIP – Swing n/a as no UKIP candidate.
South Smallburgh (Norfolk) LD 1383 Con 697 UKIP 219 Lab 103 Green 52 – LD Hold – Swing (May 2013) Con-LD 13.1%
Llanaelhaearn (Gywnedd) Plaid Cymru 200 Llais Gwynedd 112 Ind 99 – Plaid Cymru GAIN from Llais Gwynedd – Swing (May 2012) LG-PC 29.7%
Dewi (Gwynedd) PC 189 Lab 110 LD 19 – PC Hold – Swing (May 2012) Lab-PC 1%
Kidwelly (Carmarthenshire) Lab 288 PC 248 Ind 177 People 1st 58 Con 53 Ind 28 – Lab Hold – Swing n/a as no PC candidate last time.
Aylesford Green (Ashford) Con 110 UKIP 109 Lab 106 Ind 92 LD 42 Green 10 – Con GAIN from Lab – Swing (May 2015) Lab-Con 5.5%
Epsom West (Surrey) Con 619 Resident Association 591 LD 588 Lab 578 UKIP 168 Green 58 – Con GAIN from LD – Swing (May 2013) LD-Con 8.1%, Con were 5th in 2013.
Projected Nation share (Based on last 20 local by elections fought)
Con 33% Lab 28.6% LD 19.3% UKIP 10.1% SNP 4.3% Green 2.8%
ICM and Ipsos-Mori have released their October voting intention polls. Both see increased Conservative leads and both regionally project a healthy Conservative Majority. In line with what we are seeing in the by elections with the Tories in control where it matters and Labour continuing to do badly, especially in the Midlands where most of the key seats are. The Liberal Democrats will be disappointed to see there is still no breakthrough in the national polls considering their improved performance at local level.
Voting Intention UK – Con 39% Lab 33% UKIP 12% LD 7% Green 4%
Regional Seat Projection – Con 353 Lab 210 LD 6 SNP 58 Plaid Cymru 3 UKIP 1 Green 1 Northern Ireland 18 – Con Majority 56
Voting Intention UK – Con 41% Lab 34% LD 7% UKIP 7% Green 4%
Regional Seat Projection – Con 358 Lab 206 LD 6 SNP 58 Plaid Cymru 2 UKIP 1 Green 1 Northern Ireland 18 – Con Majority 66
Conclusion by party
Conservative – An excellent set of number for the Tories, 3 gains in the by elections and still well ahead in the polls and seat projections where it matters. David Cameron remain in complete control of the UK political scene right now.
Labour – This is Labour’s worst week for sometime. With terrorism in the headlines, Jeremy Corbyn appears particularly weak when anything of that nature comes up. I have always said Corbyn cannot win a General Election, I have seen nothing to come even close to changing my mind.
Lib Dems – Another decent week locally, a good result in Norfolk, although a poor result losing in Epsom in Surrey. Their poll ratings remain at the same low level they got in May too. Mixed news for the Lib Dems but at least at local level the pointers are to some decent results in May 2016.
UKIP – Struggling to find an identity post May, UKIP’s problem is they are not competing where they should be. The Mori poll has them down on 7% nationally in line with evidence they have fallen back since May. The Parliamentary by-election in Oldham West will be a big test of where UKIP are, it is a by election they should be competing in, current trends suggest they will fall well short.
SNP – No local elections this week but Scottish polling suggests they are still on course to match or better their performance last May in the Scottish Parliament elections. Doing so will mean further advances as the SNP got 45% in the 2011 Scottish Parliament elections, so they would be up by a further 5% at least if they repeat their General Election performance. Bad news for Labour who would be the main losers.
Plaid Cymru – Plaid are another big warning for Labour. They have done well in Welsh local elections recently, the potential for them to score some upsets at Labour’s expense in the Welsh Assembly elections looks to be on the increase. Plaid are the wild card that could really spoil Jeremy Corbyn’s night next May, as holding Wales is something Labour are banking on.