Walsall Council is under Conservative control with a clear majority and has a third of the seats up for election this year. Led by Cllr Mike Bird the Council has flair and determination to puruse value for money and regeneration – a recent deal to relocate waste depots helped both objectives. It is a modern council with record numbers of residents following its deliberations on Twitter.

In terms of the General Election is covers three constituencies – Aldridge and Brownhills, which is a Conservative seat, and two Labour seats both of which would be ambitious targets for us: Walsall North (Target 193) and Walsall South (Target 200.)

But the local elections in 2008 the results for the seven Walsall North constituency wards (Birchills Leamore, Blakenall, Bloxwich East, Bloxwich West, Short Heath. Willenhall North and Willenhall South) showed the Conservatives ahead. We only won two of the wards but both with very big majorities. In the two the Lib Dems won we came second leaving Labour in third place. Then in a Council byelection for in November 2008 for Birchalls Leamore we gained another council seat. 

The situation is complicated a bit by the Democratic Labour Party, a far left breakaway faction. They have more impact splitting the Labour vote in Council elections than is likely in the General Election. Indeed the DLP have councillors – who busy themselves fighting the regeneration of derelict areas. Yet even lumping their votes together with Labour we are ahead.

In the seven Walsall South wards (Bentley and Darlaston North, Darlaston South, Paddock, Palfrey, Pheasey Park Farm, Pleck and St Matthews) we won four while Labour won three and we had rather larger majorities.

Our candidate in Walsall North is Helyn Clack. While in Walsall South it is Richard Hunt. I reckon both would probably be what the Political Betting boys would regard as a "value bet".

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