Typically the 35 councils in England that are putting up the Council Tax this year claim to be doing so with the support of their residents – despite having taken care to keep the rise just below the threshold required for a referendum. There are elections next week in 128 of the 353 local councils in England.

But of the referendum dodgers only five are going to the polls next week. There are three Conservative ones Huntingdonshire (3.5% rise), Peterborough (2.9% rise) and Tunbridge Wells (2.3% rise.) Also two Labour ones St Helens (2% rise) and Preston (3.5%). These will be interesting contests to watch.

Looking down the BBC list the only marginal council is Preston.

The Conservatives in Preston opposed the Council Tax rise:

"The opposition Conservative group put forward plans including cutting the number of councillors from 57 to 40, looking at sharing senior  management roles with other councils and bringing in extra cash from the city’s Avenham car park."