Another Lib Dem gain from Conservatives, in Cambridgeshire this time

Four principal authority council by-elections this week, with three Liberal Democrat candidates. That is two up on the last time these seats were up.

There’s also now an increase in the number of Lib Dem councillors thanks to another gain off the Conservatives:

Congratulations to new councillor Andrew Wood and the team. The Lib Dems are now the largest party on the council, which is led by my Federal Board colleague Lucy Nethsingha.

After last December’s by-election win that got the first Lib Dem on North Kesteven council, it was so nearly a second in this by-election. Commiserations and congratulations on getting so close to Susan Hislop and the team.

Thank you to David Case for getting the Lib Dems on the ballot paper.

That’s an independent hold.

For what all this means for the running total of council by-election results since the last May elections, see my council by-elections scorecard here.

These by-election results round-ups cover principal authority by-elections as it’s only those for which comprehensive results are available. But this week, these by-elections at the town/parish/community council level did catch my eye:


Thatcham Town Council remains fully Lib Dem run following a win at the recent by-election [by] Liberal Democrat councillor David Lunn … Mr Lunn said he is keen to get stuck in, talk to people and help them solve their problems. But the first item on his agenda is tackling a resident’s rat problem. [Newbury Today]


Marlborough West by election result

As Marlborough News reports:

Normally in an election there aren’t any certainties – favourites, likely losers – for sure, but no certainties. Until now. There is one certainty, the winner will be Caroline, and Caroline Jane at that. Both candidates share the first and middle names which – apart from being a coincidence – is possibly unique?…

Also unusual is that this is (possibly?) the first fully β€˜party political’ election to the Town Council, ever.


Houghton Regis

Understanding the opinion polls

For understanding what is happening in politics, by-elections have the advantage of being real votes in real ballot boxes. But the opinion polls have the advantage of trying to be a representative sample of voters, not just those in the places that happen to have by-elections. To understand the polls properly – and what they do and don’t really tell us – see my book, Polling UnPacked: The History, Uses and Abuses of Political Opinion Polls.

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