Last week was a bad one for Conservative local government.
We lost control of Gosport after the council leader resigned over parking charges, were left with a minority administration in Dover District Council after a defection to the Lib Dems, Labour took over the council at the Vale of Glamorgan after the Conservative administration mishandled its social services budget, and worst of all we lost control of Crawley Borough Council – the most marginal parliamentary seat in the country – after another defection to the LibDems.
There was consolation on Thursday however with a successful by-election giving the Conservatives overall control of Epping Forest council.
Sean Fear estimates
that since the start of September the Conservatives have made a net
gain of 5 seats from 74 principal authority local by-elections, and
that the national equivalent vote shares are Con 39%, LD 30%, Lab 24%.
We still have over 8000 Councillors and are the largest and most effective party in local government, but hopefully we will fare better in upcoming by-elections.