Saturday, 5 May 2012

Heavy Defeat for Coalition in Local Elections.

By Ben Aulakh

The Coalition government have suffered a heavy defeat to Labour in the council elections after losing 518 council seats across England.

Labour seized control of 22 councils across the country while the Conservative’s lost 10 local authorities and the Liberal democrats lost control of 1 council.

The government, which has been left reeling after a series of scandals and opinion poll slides, ended Friday night with a total of 328 fewer councillors across England, a final total of 785.

Their Coalition partners the Liberal Democrats also lost almost half of their councillors, conceding 190 seats across the country; they were left with 289 councillors across England.

Labour, which had already been leading the Conservatives by around 8 points in the opinion polls in the run up to the election, saw that advantage translate into a net gain of 534 councillors.

Labour also saw it’s percentage of the vote rise by 11 per cent compared to local election results held during the general election in 2010, seized mainly from the Liberal Democrats, who lost 10 per cent of vote they gained two years ago.

The BBC’s projected national share of the vote saw Labour coming out on top with 38 per cent, with the Conservatives lagging 8 points behind on 31 per cent.

The Liberal Democrats, who suffered their worst ever result in a local election also saw their projected share of the vote coming in at around 16 per cent.

The Conservatives also failed to take a single council from Labour, either ceding local authorities completely to the opposition, or losing them to no overall control.

The news was even worse for the Coalition in Scotland; the Liberal Democrats were beaten in 80 council seats while the Conservatives lost 16 seats across the devolved local authorities.

The Scottish national Party and Scottish Labour Party took advantage of the poor showings from the Westminster Coalition gaining 57 and 58 council seats respectively.

In Wales Labour also enjoyed great success picking up 231 council seats, at the expense of the Welsh Nationalist Party Plaid Cymru who conceded 41 seats, and the Conservatives and Lib Dems who also lost 61 and 66 seats respectively.

The local elections also saw Green Party make steady progress, gaining control of 34 council wards across England and Wales, a net gain of 11 councillors.

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