Wow! What a week! On the face of it this week looked like a fairly normal week of by-elections with 4 Principal Council By-Elections. 1 was being defended by the Liberal Democrats with the other 3 all having Liberal Democrats candidates. There were good indications that the hold was looking likely, and in another the Liberal Democrats locally had scored a great result the previous year to take another of the wards seats, however the other 2 weren’t contested previously so expectations outside the local area were not high. That lack of optimism was misplaced as the Liberal Democrats took all 4 of the seats, moreover the worst results of the night had over 50% vote share, and increases of 17.5 points.

Congratulations all round to all 4 candidates and their teams.

Congratulations to Helen Rujbally and team in Westway (Tandridge DC). This was a Liberal Democrats seat and normally the result is fairly close between them and the aconservatives with the seats regularly changing hands. Helen was able to increase vote share by a healthy 17.5 points a 10% swing from the Conservatives to massively increase the Liberal Democrats majority.

Probably the stand out performance of the stand out week came in Torrington (Torridge DC). Congratulations to fellow Newbie Cheryl Cottle-Hunkin and team who was standing for the Liberal Democrats in a seat that they haven’t contested since 2011 and were only 3rd in their last 2 attempts. Cheryl didn’t just gain the seat, it’s fair to say she stormed it taking 60.2% of the vote from nothing with the nearest challenger (an independent) on only 15.5%.

Congratulations (and in some respects commiserations) to Stephen Hammond and team in Bridgemary North Ward (Gosport BC). The Liberal Democrats Haven’t stood in this Borough Council ward in at least 15 years and even though they had a good result in the larger county division in May I don’t think anyone could have expected the result they achieved this week. Stephen was able to take 57.9% of the vote for the Liberal Democrats from a standing start in what would have been on any other week the stand out performance of the week if not the year. Labour who held the seat previously by a large margin lost nearly 50 points of vote share as they lost the seat.

Congratulations to Rob Field and team in North (Maidstone BC). This was a Conservative seat in a multi member ward and a good result for the Liberal Democrats was expected here after they topped the poll in 2016. However the pressure on the team here had no effect as they took 51.4% of the vote, an increase of 20 points for the Liberal Democrats.

Full details of last nights By-Election results can be found on the ALDC’s By-Election Results page and details of that is coming next on our Forthcoming Elections page. Hat Tip to Britain Elects for their results too.

Well done to all who stood last night regardless of the result. It is really important that we stand candidates in all by-elections in order to build the habit of voting Liberal Democrat. If there is no candidate of ours on the ballot paper we are depriving someone of their ability to vote for us. If you are interested in standing as a candidate please get in touch with your Local Party or ALDC.