Thursday, 3 October 2013

By-Election Previews: 3 October 2013

By-elections on 3rd October 2013:


St. Edmundsbury District Council, Suffolk; caused by the death of Conservative councillor Charlotte Howard at the age of 68.  Howard, who worked at an opticians in Bury St. Edmunds, had served on the district council for less than three months.
Crescent House Angel Hill
  © Copyright Keith Evans and licensed for
reuse under this 
Creative Commons Licence.
This is central Bury St. Edmunds, covering the city centre and most of the public buildings: the town hall, the cathedral and the Shirehall which once housed West Suffolk county council; however, despite the name, the Abbey lies just outside the ward boundary.

This is the ward's second by-election in five months, the first having come on county council election day in May after the resignation of one of the ward's Conservative councillors.  That by-election elected Charlotte Howard, whose death just a few months later has caused this by-election.  While the ward remained safe Conservative in May (the Tories have held the ward's two district council seats since taking the second seat off an Independent in 2007) there was a significant swing to the Green Party who have established themselves as a force in Suffolk politics.  On the same day the local county council division (Tower) re-elected Green county councillor Mark Ereira-Guyer for a second term in office, with the Conservatives losing the second seat in the county division to an independent.

Joanna Rayner hopes to take over as the second Conservative councillor for the ward; she is a manager at a housing association.  The new Green candidate is county councillor Mark Ereira-Guyer, hoping to get back on the district council after losing his seat in St Olaves ward in 2011.  Quentin Cornish stands for Labour, Chris Lale for the Liberal Democrats and Clive Reason is the ward's first UKIP candidate.

Parliamentary constituency: Bury St Edmunds
Suffolk county council division: Tower
ONS Travel to Work Area: Bury St Edmunds

Quentin Cornish (Lab)
Mark Ereira-Guyer (Grn)
Chris Lale (LD)
Joanna Rayner (C)
Clive Reason (UKIP)

May 2013 by-election C 562 Grn 399 Lab 154 LD 149
May 2011 result C 1007/744 Grn 448 LD 317 Lab 282/259
May 2007 result C 819/582 Ind 519 LD 348 Grn 309
May 2003 result C 982 Ind 666/386


East Lindsey District Council, Lincolnshire; caused by the resignation of Independent councillor Philip Leivers who has been charged with historic sex offences against a child.
The Church of St Leonard , Chapel St Leonards
  © Copyright Bill Henderson and licensed for
reuse under this 
Creative Commons Licence.
Five miles north of Skegness, Chapel St Leonards is a coastal retirement village whose economy is based on caravan park holidays and its long, wide, sandy beach.  The ward named after the village also includes the parishes of Anderby to the north and inland Hogsthorpe.

East Lindsey is a rather isolated area and one of the last remaining strongholds of the rural Independent councillor.  At the 2003 election both of Chapel St Leonards' councillors were independents, Leivers topping the poll and only Labour providing party opposition.  The Conservatives contested the ward in 2007 and took one of the two seats from a retiring Independent councillor, but narrowly lost their seat to another independent in 2011, Leivers topping the poll again with a large personal vote.  The local county division (Ingoldmells Rural) is safely Conservative.

Two independent candidates are vying to replace Cllr Leivers.  Richard Enderby is the chairman of Hogsthorpe parish council, while Mel Turton-Leivers (no relation to the resigned councillor) is the finance officer of Chapel St Leonards parish council and formerly ran a pub in the village.  The Tory candidate Kevin Sharpe, a Chapel St Leonards parish councillor, lost his district council seat in 2011 and wants it back.  The Labour candidate is Fiona Brown, from Chapel St Leonards, while UKIP candidate Giles Crust, from Skendleby near Spilsby, fought Ingoldmells Rural in the county council elections in May as an independent, polling 18% and coming last of the three candidates.

Parliamentary constituency: Louth and Horncastle
Lincolnshire county council division: Ingoldmells Rural
ONS Travel to Work Area: Skegness

Fiona Brown (Lab)
Giles Crust (UKIP)
Richard Enderby (Ind)
Kevin Sharpe (C)
Mel Turton-Leivers (Ind)

May 2011 result Ind 801/557 C 501/457 EDP 266
May 2007 result East Lindsey Ind Group 541/289 C 494/423 Ind 456/252/222
May 2003 result Ind 993/776/283 Lab 302/225


Aylesbury Vale District Council, Buckinghamshire; caused by the death of Liberal Democrat councillor Steve Patrick at the age of 59.  A district councillor since 1999, he was the serving Mayor of Aylesbury in his capacity as a town councillor.
The Aylesbury Arm of the Grand Union Canal
  © Copyright Cathy Cox and licensed for reuse
under this 
Creative Commons Licence.
This ward is eastern Aylesbury, bisected by the Grand Union Canal and running between the A41 road to London and the A418 road to Leighton-Linslade.  A Liberal Democrat stronghold at the 2003 election, it has since swung to the Conservatives; while the Lib Dems still held both seats after the 2011 election, the majorities were only 44 and 6 votes.  You might think that would make the Conservatives the clear challengers, but the May county elections have muddied the waters; most of the ward is in the Aylesbury East county division, which was won by UKIP in May with 35% with the Conservatives second on 30% and the Lib Dems (who had held the area in 2009) third with 20% and Steve Patrick as their candidate.  A smaller part of the ward is in Aylesbury North which the Lib Dems held.  All this tells us is pretty much anything could happen here. 

Defending for the Liberal Democrats is Allison Harrison, the remaining Aylesbury town councillor for this ward after Steve Patrick's death.  Edward Sims, the Tory candidate for Aylesbury North in May, fights the by-election in the Conservative interest.  Roy McNickle is the Labour candidate; he fought Aylesbury East in May.  Independent candidate Patrick Martin is having his third go at getting elected to the district council from this ward, after polling respectably in 2011 (when he was a close runner-up in the town council election) and 2007.  Finally, UKIP's new county councillor Phil Gomm hopes to make it two wins at the ballot box in five months by standing for the district council.

Parliamentary constituency: Aylesbury
Buckinghamshire county council division: Aylesbury East (part), Aylesbury North (part)
ONS Travel to Work Area: Milton Keynes and Aylesbury

Phil Gomm (UKIP)
Allison Harrison (LD)
Patrick Martin (Ind)
Roy McNickle (Lab)
Edward Sims (C)

May 2011 result LD 475/437 C 431/419 Lab 336/246 Ind 288 UKIP 205/164
May 2007 result LD 626/581 C 418/412 Ind 301 UKIP 122
May 2003 result LD 711/675 C 229/222


Taunton Deane District Council, Somerset; caused by the resignation of Liberal Democrat councillor Steve Brooks, a former mayor of the district.
Houses, Hamilton Road, Taunton
  © Copyright Ken Grainger and licensed for
reuse under this 
Creative Commons Licence.
This generally residential ward covers the area running east from Taunton town centre to the M5 motorway at junction 25.  Halcon is a very deprived area with high unemployment and crime levels, although Avon and Somerset Police have managed to significantly cut crime on the estate in recent years, with former teenage tearaways becoming volunteers.

Interestingly Taunton Halcon doesn't vote strongly Labour in the way of many deprived areas; while Labour do have seats on the district council their stronghold is in Wellington, a radical town since before the Industrial Revolution.  Instead the ward's residents vote strongly for the three Liberal Democrat candidates, although their majorities were sharply reduced at the 2011 election in which Brooks topped the poll, with single Conservative and Labour candidates all polling strongly.  The ward last went to the polls in May 2013 in which the county elections were combined with another district by-election: both the district by-election and the local county council division (Taunton East) saw Lib Dem holds with UKIP running a strong second.  (A small part of the ward is in the Taunton South division, which had a similar result.)

For the second district by-election in this ward in five months, the Liberal Democrats have selected Federica Smith, who was runner-up in the Taunton Killams and Mountfield ward in 2011.  UKIP's candidate this time round is constituency party chairman Dorothy Baker.  The Tories have gone for Marcus Palmer, who worked for many years at Agusta Westland helicopters in Yeovil and fought Comeytrowe ward in 2011.  Finally, the Labour candidate is community nurse Anna Lynch.

Parliamentary constituency: Taunton Deane
Somerset county council division: Taunton East (most), Taunton South (part)
ONS Travel to Work Area: Taunton

May 2013 by-election LD 457 UKIP 295 C 179 Lab 159 Grn 78
May 2011 result LD 694/539/529 C 475 Lab 420
May 2007 result LD 804/709/679 C 372/354/326 Lab 154

1 comment:

  1. Hey I have wonderful memories of visiting Bury St. Edmunds for Christmas in the early 90's. A truly enchanting place! I hope to return someday. Thanks for posting.Have a nice day..............
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