Conservatives make gains in local elections

11 May 15
Local council elections have mirrored the general election outcome, with strong gains for the Conservatives at the expense of both Labour and the Liberal Democrats

The Conservatives have gained control of 30 councils in England following Thursday’s local elections, with authorities including Amber Valley, North Warwickshire and Gravesham among the areas where the party now has a majority.

Following counting of the votes in 36 metropolitan boroughs, 194 districts and 49 unitaries, the Conservatives now run 157 of the 279 councils contested, with 5,223 councillors elected, an increase of 498.

Mirroring the general election result from voting on the same day, both Labour and Liberal Democrats lost seats.

Labour won 2,163 councillors, a fall of 181 compared to the last time these elections were fought in 2011, and lost control of three councils. Both Gravesham and North Warwickshire were lost to the Conservatives, while no party now has overall control in Stoke-on-Trent.

The LibDems lost more than one-third of the seats it held going into the election, with the number of councillors falling by 368 to 612. The party also lost control of four councils – Hinckley and Bosworth to the Conservatives and South Somerset, Three Rivers, and Watford to no overall control – but held four others. These were Eastbourne, Eastleigh, Oadby and Wigston, and South Lakeland.

Other Conservative gains included taking overall control in councils such as Staffordshire Moorlands, Wyre Forest and Newark and Sherwood, where previously no party had a majority.

The party also gained Warwick, Winchester and Worcester authorities on the same day it also won a majority in the House of Commons.

UKIP took control of one council – Thanet, from no overall control – as it increased its number of councillors by 174 to 198 in the authorities contested.

 • Read a full analysis of the results from Chris Game, visiting lecturer at the Institute of Local Government Studies at the University of Birmingham.

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