Sunday, 17 December 2017

Local Council By-Election Results 2017


Overall, 505,316 votes were cast over 314 local authority (tier one and tier two) contests. All percentages are rounded to the nearest single decimal place. For comparison see 2016's results here.

  Party
Number of Candidates
Total Vote
%
+/- 
2016
+/- 
2015
Average
+/-
Seats
Conservative
        308
176,562
   34.9%
 +5.7%
   +3.9%
   573
    -6
Labour
        273
158,131
   31.3%
 +0.7%
   +1.1%
   579
    -5
LibDem
        250
 88,436
   17.5%
 +2.6%
   +7.8%
   354
  +17
UKIP
        132
 18,898
    3.7%
  -5.2%
    -4.4%
   143
  -12
Green
        164
 23,063
    4.6%
 +0.0%
    -0.3%
   141
   +6
SNP*
          8
  9,463
    1.9%
  -2.2%
    -7.1%
 1,183
     0
PC
          2
   635
    0.1%
  -0.6%
    -1.1%  
   318
     0
Ind***
         93
 20,269
    4.0%
 -1.4%
    -0.2%
   218
    -3
Other****
         39
  9,840
    1.9%
 +0.4%
   +0.3%
   252
   +3

* There were eight by-elections in Scotland.
** There were three by-elections in Wales.
*** There were 11 Independent clashes.
**** See the quarterly round-ups for details of other parties

What a weird year. In 2016, you know, the year Labour dwelled in the doldrums, it nevertheless came out on top in the by-election contests. And with the terms somewhat reversed the Tories turn the tables. How so? It all comes down to that awful, demoralising set of local election results back in May - dispiriting if you were Labour, at least. You may remember those halcyon days where Theresa May couldn't put a foot wrong and looked like she was going to flick the Labour Party aside without breaking a sweat. Then, only a couple of weeks into the general election campaign it did look like that could have happened. We know things turned out differentlyt, but it just so happened the council by-elections that had been held over for the locals replicated the "normal" election results. And the small matter they took place in an over preponderance of Conservative-leaning seats. Therefore the polarisation that has happened since is more or less swamped by those second quarter stats.

There isn't much else to say. The Greens are holding up despite the huge pressure on them from the mammoth Corbyn-led Labour Party, so that's no mean feat. And UKIP are down to their lowest level since I've been tracking local by-elections. The nationalist parties in Scotland and Wales find themselves squeezed this year because, well, there haven't been many by-elections for them to fight.

What is interesting is the LibDems. After a tough time in the middle of the year, it would appear they're back on the by-election winning trail again, even if their vote average remains stubbornly behind the two major parties. Still, since August (i.e. the point I began reporting ward results) the LibDems have taken six seats off the Tories and three seats off Labour. To my mind this seems to tally with the win ratio from earlier in this year. Therefore they have a choice. Cuddly Uncle Vince could try the same trick Tim Farron tried to pull and disproportionately target Labour, with little headway, or pitch slightly more to the centre right to start taking more votes and seats off the Tories. On those figures, I know where I'd concentrate my fire.

Any predictions for next year? Hella no, I've supposed to have given them up. Nevertheless, despite that I'm sure something of this ilk will come along soon.

Saturday, 16 December 2017

Quarter Four Local By-Election Results 2017

Overall, 116,787 votes were cast over 79 local authority (tier one and tier two) contests. All percentages are rounded to the nearest single decimal place. For comparison see Quarter Three's results here.

  Party
Number of Candidates
Total Vote
%
+/- 
Q3
+/- Q4 2016
Average
+/-
Seats
Conservative
         76
37,818
   32.4%
 +1.8%
   +1.6%
   498
    -7
Labour
         73
40,480
   34.7%
  -2.9%
   +9.8%
   555
    -1
LibDem
         65
21,263
   18.2%
 +6.3%
    -0.2%
   327
   +9
UKIP
         27
 3,003
    2.6%
 +0.6%
    -3.2%
   111
    -3
Green
         43
 3,745
    3.2%
 -2.0%
   +0.0%
    87
   +1
SNP*
          3
 3,762
    3.2%
 -2.0%
    -4.5%
 1,254
     0
PC
          1
   525
    0.4%
 +0.4%
    -0.9%  
   525
     0
Ind***
         28
 5,187
    4.4%
 -1.7%
    -2.4%
   185
   +1
Other****
          6
 1,004
    0.9%
 -1.0%
    -0.9%
   167
     0

* There were three by-elections in Scotland
** There were two by-elections in Wales
*** There were five Independent clashes
**** Others this quarter consisted of Yorkshire Party (153 and 156), Putting Hartlepool First (474), Elvis Bus Pass (34), It's Our County (Herefordshire) (156), and English Democrats (31)

Nothing dramatic has happened in this quarter, though the numbers for the top parties are a touch depressed, no doubt thanks to a surging Liberal Democrats. These kinds of percentages and successes were last seen before the general election. With nothing moving in the national polls, are we seeing a reversion back to how it was before last April, at least as far as by-elections are concerned? Possibly, though UKIP remains almost entirely spent.

Anyways, the year end aggregation is up next so we'll cast some more thoughts in this direction then.