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18.00 We don’t know exactly what’s happened in Birmingham City Council yet, but we do have confirmation that Labour have retained it – as everybody assumed they would before the local party starting sending out worried noises this morning. With no other big results due in, the state of the parties is below.

That’s it from us here at ConservativeHome, at the end of what has been, relative to predictions, a remarkably kind night to the Tories.

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Redditch (from Labour)

Pendle (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Mile Valley (to NOC)

South Cambridgeshire (to Liberal Democrats)

Kingston-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Kirklees (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (to NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth (to NOC)

Redditch (to Conservatives)

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Three Rivers (from NOC)

South Cambridgeshire (from Conservatives)

Kingston-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 2267 +58

Conservatives 1320 -30

Liberal Democrats: 531 +76

Green: 39 +8

UKIP: 3 -123


17.30 We’re coming close to the end of our live blog, holding out only in the increasingly forlorn hope that Birmingham will declare before six o’clock. Counting the morning after really ought to be banned.

Mike Smithson of political betting raises an interesting point: do tonight’s results illustrate the limits of even the most formidable ground game? Labour have been very publicly mobilising huge numbers of activists to hit target councils such as Wandsworth and Westminster – in a strategy very much like the Tories’ ‘Road Trip’ teams in 2015 – but in most instances the Conservatives have held on.

If that’s the case, and the upset in 2017 really did hinge preponderantly if not entirely on the ‘dementia tax’ and other air war failings, then the electoral potency of Momentum might be being badly oversold. However, there is another possibility – that Labour’s glut of foot soldiers was misdeployed by so-called ‘pied pipers’ (read: Owen Jones).


17.00 The yellow wave really is coming in in south-west London, as the Lib Dems take overall control of Kingston from the Tories. More councillors means a bigger ground operation in the Westminster constituencies, suggesting the Conservatives will really have their work cut out to recapture some of their 2015 prizes such as Twickenham and Kingston and Surbiton.

However, whilst the Lib Dems may have achieved some very strong success in a very particular part of the country, overall the Tories have still put in a result which should worry the Opposition – here’s a handy thread highlighting some of the key areas where Labour fell short.

16.30 More good news for the Lib Dems. Not only do they seem to be making great progress in Kingston as set out above, but they have also picked up a second seat in Manchester. That means the city will have an opposition group for the first time since before the 2014 elections.

In other unsurprising Labour news, Dan Jarvis has won the Sheffield mayoralty.

 


16.00 Are the Lib Dems on track for their fourth gain? South Cambridgeshire was unexpected but apparently compensated for falling unexpectedly short in Windsor, so a win in Kingston would put them back on track.

In other news which will surprise nobody, Labour have held Manchester. Prior to the election they had every seat save one which was held by John Leech, the city’s former Lib Dem MP. Whether or not the opposition parties can increase their showing, or will get completely wiped out again, remains to be seen.


15.30 We’re at the ‘Labour hold Islington‘ stage of the afternoon, when righteous resentment of those returning officers who elected to count the morning after reaches its peak as we wait to find out what exactly any of the results from Birmingham actually mean.

In the interim, commentators are continuing to play haruspex and project what these results might mean for an election – but as the above-quoted tweet suggests, they probably contain little really valuable information on that score.

15.00 That’s another Lib Dem council win from the Conservatives – it looks as if the #LibDemFightback is finally here, at least in very pro-Remain pockets of the country.

As Birmingham is voting on entirely new boundaries, it’s hard to tell what’s going on – and the fact that every result is being flagged as a technical ‘gain’ doesn’t make things any clearer. It still looks as if the early chatter about Labour actually losing control may have been overblown, but local journalists are still reporting that the party’s majority may be slashed. In other urban news, the Tories picked up three new seats on Leeds City Council.

Finally, Matt Singh has an interesting take on the ‘implications for a general election’ question, and it’s not good for Labour.

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Redditch (from Labour)

Pendle (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Mile Valley (to NOC)

South Cambridgeshire (to Liberal Democrats)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Kirklees (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (to NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth (to NOC)

Redditch (to Conservatives)

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Three Rivers (from NOC)

South Cambridgeshire (from Conservatives)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 1800 +58

Conservatives 1219 -4

Liberal Democrats: 436 +46

Green: 34 +5

UKIP: 3 -121

14.30 What do these results imply for the next general election? That’s the question which seems to be preying on Twitter’s mind at the minute. John Rentoul highlights Michael Thrasher’s projection and suggests that the tied share of the vote in these elections compares unfavourably to the 2.4 point Tory lead in last year’s general election – although you might query whether that is the most pertinent comparison.

On the other hand Matthew Goodwin picks up a different thread, namely that the spread of the Labour vote is decidedly unhelpful to Corbyn’s designs on Downing Street. Even spectacular results in London can only yield marginal gains for a Party already so dominant in the capital, and if the Conservative ‘firewall’ of English towns holds up it leaves the Opposition with no route to power that doesn’t involve a coalition, most likely with the Scottish Nationalists.

Writing on LabourList, Conor Pope argues that major breakthroughs in places such as Wandsworth are necessary to justify a strategy that tacitly concedes areas such as Nuneaton to the Tories. But this once again runs up against the problem we highlighted earlier: how many places like Wandsworth are there, really?

14.00 The Tories’ advance in Sutton muddied the trend of solid defeats to the Liberal Democrats in Europhile south-west London, but if the above rumour is true it looks as though Sutton has bucked a broader area trend. This is one – possibly the only one – part of the country where the Lib Dems showed any signs of recovery in 2017, and these results suggests they are successfully bedding themselves back in. They also recaptured Three Rivers by taking a seat which had been held by a defector to the Conservatives.

As an interesting aside, apparently the initial results from those areas which have been experimenting with voter ID have reported increased turnout.

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Redditch (from Labour)

Pendle (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Mile Valley (to NOC)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Kirklees (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (to NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth (to NOC)

Redditch (to Conservative)

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Three Rivers (from NOC)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 1672 +57

Conservatives 1136 +2

Liberal Democrats: 412 +43

Green: 32 +4

UKIP: 3 -118

13.30 There’s been a something of a lull in results for the past half-hour, but Redditch seems to be fitting a broader trend of the Conservatives strengthening their grip on the West Midlands. We’re still waiting for the results which will show if this effect really has bled over into Birmingham proper – the local Tories have been losing ground in the city since 2010, so it would be a real turnaround. Current information appears to be that Labour will still be in charge, but the Tories are picking up seats.

13.00 Starting this update on a high note with news that the Tories have taken control of Redditch council from Labour, continuing the general trend of forward movement for the Party outside London – although Labour did buck this slightly by capturing Kirklees from NOC. The Conservatives have also apparently taken Pendle.

Not much news from that suddenly-very-interesting Birmingham count yet, but have seen suggestions that the city’s absolute horror show over bin strikes might explain an unexpectedly strong Conservative performance in the city. Harry Phibbs previously wrote for this site about how Birmingham was possibly the biggest test for the Tories in these elections, and whilst it’s early days yet it looks as if he may be right.

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Redditch (from Labour)

Pendle (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Mile Valley (to NOC)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Kirklees (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (to NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth (to NOC)

Redditch (to Conservative)

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 1599 +49

Conservatives 1021 +12

Liberal Democrats: 366 +35

Green: 31 +4

UKIP: 3 -111

12.30 Some extraordinary noises coming out of Birmingham, where sources had suggested to me during the campaign that the Tories might be on track for a hideous result. Rumour now is that Labour might actually lose control of the council.

There remains a high chance that this is just extreme expectation management. The picture so far is mixed: the Tories have gained a ward, but also lost one – which does fit the reported pattern of the Party doing badly in its own areas and well in Labour’s. As I said in yesterday’s results to watch post, a dramatic result is possible in Birmingham because the entire council is up for election at once following a boundary review.

All of which complicates the question I posed yesterday: what do the results mean for urban Toryism? The Party has gone backwards in Wandsworth, but largely held the line in Westminster and gained Barnet. It lost Trafford, but made gains in Bury. Took a hammering in Richmond-upon-Thames, but made strong advances against the Lib Dems in nearby Sutton. A significant result in Birmingham, in either direction, will do a lot to shape the perception of how the Conservatives are performing in cities.

12.00 Labour’s failure to crack down on antisemitism is being widely credited with their deeply disappointing result in Barnet, where what looked like an easy scalp became an unexpected Conservative gain.

Ken Livingstone has chosen to compound this by coming onto the morning TV coverage… to talk about Hitler. The fact that he still hasn’t been expelled from the party is extraordinary, and it’s surely impossible to argue that Labour don’t deserve the kicking they have received from Jewish voters.

The Tories have their own problems, having seriously under-performed in ethnically diverse seats, and should not allow the generally upbeat feel of the results so far to let them lose sight of how much work they need to do just to regain the ground with minority voters that David Cameron gained in 2010 and 2015. CCHQ can no more neglect this growing share of the electorate than Labour can ignore their traditional, working-class base.

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (from NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 1536 +45

Conservatives 916 +2

Liberal Democrats: 335 +40

Green: 25 +4

UKIP: 2 -103

11.30 One thread coming out of these results is how the Tories’ strength in Leave-leaning towns has given them a ‘firewall’ which is a serious impediment to a plausible Labour route to Downing Street. Similarly to the Democrats in the United States, the impression is that some parts of Labour have been lured by demography-is-destiny thinking into alienating sections of the electorate which are still crucial to a Labour victory.

Marcus Roberts suggests that we might see in these results the Tories moving towards what they tried (and failed) to do in 2017: secure their southern base whilst penetrating Labour heartlands in the Midlands and North. The revival of the Liberal Democrats, he suggests, may actually help by splitting the progressive vote and giving protest voters defecting from UKIP an alternative to Labour.

11.00 Only a bare trickle of new results in so far – as Mark Wallace points out, its the usual reminder of how fantastically irritating Friday counts are. Perhaps we need to revive the ‘Save General Election night!‘ campaign and extend it to the locals?

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (from NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 1474 + 37

Conservatives 887 -1

Liberal Democrats: 326 + 40

Green: 22 + 6

UKIP: 2 – 95.

10.30 am: Not a lot of movement at the minute as the Friday counts haven’t started coming in, but Election Maps have whipped up a visual representation of the absolute hammering the Lib Dems gave the Tories in Richmond-upon-Thames. Conversely, Matthew Goodwin has highlighted how the areas where the Tories did well were strongly pro-Leave.

Whilst the Richmond result probably does show how Richmond can hurt the Tories, the problem for those in the Party pushing for a change of course is that – as Stephen Bush has pointed out – there are a lot more Nuneatons than Richmonds out there.

Meanwhile, the Tories are pointing out this morning that Labour have lost not eight but 11 seats in Nuneaton & Bedworth under Corbyn, including the three in 2016. This contrasts with a net gain of 12 seats under Ed Miliband in 2012 and 2014. Not just a bad night, then, but a trend.

 

 

9.30 am

Councils summary so far

Conservative gains

Barnet (from NOC)

Basildon (from NOC)

Peterborough (from NOC)

Southend-on-Sea (from NOC)

Conservative losses:

Plymouth (to Labour)

Richmond-upon-Thames (to Liberal Democrats)

Trafford (to NOC)

Labour gains:

Plymouth (from Conservatives)

Trafford (from NOC)

Labour losses:

Derby (from NOC)

Nuneaton & Bedworth

Liberal Democrat gains:

Richmond-upon-Thames (from Conservatives)

Seat totals & gains and losses summary

Labour 1467 + 37

Conservatives 884 + 2

Liberal Democrats: 326 + 40

Green: 22 + 6

UKIP: 2 – 92.

 

114 comments for: Live Blog: Summary. Nasty Party factor holds Labour back in London, Brexit factor helps Tories consolidate in the provincial suburbs.

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