English council results so far
Holds: Broxbourne, Thurrock, Nuneaton & Bedworth, Epping Forest, Basildon, Rochford, Brentwood, Harlow, Rushmoor, Redditch, Fareham, Amber Valley, North East Lincolnshire, Tamworth, Dudley, Bexley, Hillingdon
Losses: Worcester (to no overall control), Wandsworth (to Labour), Southampton (to Labour), West Oxfordshire (to NOC), Barnet (to Labour),
Gains: Cumberland (from NOC), Wandsworth (from Tories), Southampton (from Tories), Barnet (from Tories)
Holds: Sunderland, Halton, South Tyneside, Chorley, Tameside, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Sefton, Stevenage, Lincoln, Sandwell, Exeter, Ipswich, Wigan, Coventry, Salford, North Tyneside, Preston, Oldham, Waltham Forest, Wolverhampton, Barnsley, Ealing, Barking & Dagenham, Redbridge
Loss: Kingston-upon-Hull (to Lib Dems)
Gain: Kingston-upon-Hull (from Labour)
What other results are expected and when?
Around 9am: Counting begins for a further 71 councils in England and all councils in Scotland and Wales.
Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey vowed to take more seats – both on councils and in the Commons – off the Conservatives today after handing them an electoral bloody nose in Blue Wall areas.
His party and the Greens enjoyed a profitable night at the ballot box in areas where voters shunned the main parties.
Both the Tories and Labour suffered disappointing results, with Boris Johnson enduring a bloodbath in London while Keir Starmer’s progress across England was underwhelming.
But the Lib Dems added more than 50 councillors to their tally and seized control of Kingston-Upon-Hull council from Labour.
They also made inroads against the Conservatives in West Oxfordshire, Stockport, Wokingham and the London borough of Merton.
West Oxfordshire – which includes the Witney constituency of former PM David Cameron – is now under no overall control (NOC), having been Tory for 22 years.
Merton also includes a key Lib Dem target, the Wimbledon parliamentary seat of Tory Stephen Hammond, who has a majority of just 628.
Addressing supporters in south London this morning, Sir Ed said: ‘We are going to have a Liberal Democrat MP for Wimbledon at the next election.
‘And I think there are other places where we’re going to see Liberal Democrat success for the first time ever.’
He added that people were turning away from the Tories because they ‘cannot believe that a Conservative prime minister, and a bunch of Conservative MPs, are behaving so appallingly’.
‘I think this is a turning point. This is a historic moment for the Liberal Democrats,’ he added.
The Lib Dems have taken two previously safe Tory Westminster seats off the Tories in the past year, winning by-elections in North Shropshire and Chesham and Amersham.
For the local elections, the party focused on making further inroads in Tory heartlands – the ‘Blue Wall’ in southern England – following recent Westminster by-election successes in North Shropshire and Chesham and Amersham.
For their part, the Greens have racked up an extra 20-plus seats.
Election guru John Curtice said the Lib Dems were ‘the surprise of tonight’.
‘In terms of share of the vote, the progress is relatively modest, but they might just be hoping they are finally demonstrating some recovery from the 2015 general election,’ he told the BBC.
Mr Johnson is facing a backlash from local Conservatives after his party lost Thatcher’s beloved Wandsworth to Labour for the first time since 1978, as well as Barnet and even Westminster, a council which has been blue since its creation in 1964. The Tories also lost Worcester to no overall control, with gains for the Greens and Labour.
Addressing supporters in south London this morning, Sir Ed said: ‘We are going to have a Liberal Democrat MP for Wimbledon at the next election. ‘
He added that people were turning away from the Tories (Boris Johnson pictured today) because they ‘cannot believe that a Conservative prime minister, and a bunch of Conservative MPs, are behaving so appallingly’.
A member of the Green party celebrating the election of a Green councillor in the Wirral
Asif Shaheed (Paston & Walton seat) wins for the Lib Dems at the results count at Peterborough Arena, during the local government elections. Friday May 6, 2022
Sir Ed said added that people were turning away from the Tories because they ‘cannot believe that a Conservative prime minister, and a bunch of Conservative MPs, are behaving so appallingly’.
A VERY simple guide to the 2022 Local Elections
When are the local elections?
Polling stations opened at 7am and closed at 10pm last night.
What is up for grabs?
Local council elections are happening in England, but not in all areas. More than 4,000 councillors in 146 councils will be standing for election in major cities including Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and all 32 London boroughs.
South Yorkshire will also be voting for a regional mayor and 1,000 parish councils will be electing around 10,000 councillors.
All 32 councils in Scotland and all 22 in Wales will be holding elections, with residents able to vote from the age of 16.
In Northern Ireland, voters will be electing 90 members, representing 18 constituencies, to the Northern Ireland Assembly.
When will the results be announced?
The first batch of results is likely to be announced at midnight, with locations such as Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Essex, Greater Manchester and Bolton traditionally announced around this time. The latest is likely to be around 5pm on Saturday from Tower Hamlets.
Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland do not start counting until later this morning and the results are unlikely to be complete before tomorrow evening.
But outside London, the picture is distinctly mixed for Sir Keir. The party retained Sunderland but lost Hull to Sir Ed Davey’s Lib Dems. It was a similar story for the Green Party who chipped away at Conservative and Labour seats in England.
Labour picked up control of the new Cumberland authority, where senior local Tory John Mallinson called for Mr Johnson to go.
The leader of Carlisle City Council told the BBC: ‘I think it is not just partygate, there is the integrity issue. Basically I just don’t feel people any longer have the confidence that the Prime Minister can be relied upon to tell the truth.’
He said he expected Sir Graham Brady, the chair of the Tory 1922 Committee, to soon receive more letters of no-confidence in Mr Johnson from MPs.
In Portsmouth, where the Tories lost four seats, Simon Bosher the leader of the Conservative group said Mr Johnson should ‘take a good, strong look in the mirror’ because ‘those are people that are actually bearing the brunt on the doorstep of behaviour of what’s been going on in Westminster’.
Ravi Govindia, leader of the Wandsworth Tories, said: ‘Let’s not be coy about it, of course national issues were part of the dilemma people were facing.’
After full results were declared from 71 councils, the Tories had lost control of six authorities and suffered a net loss of 132 councillors, Labour had a net gain of four councils and 91 seats, the Lib Dems had gained a council and 40 councillors and the Greens had put on 22 councillors.
Green Party co-leader Adrian Ramsay said the local election results showed the party was now a ‘credible alternative to the establishment parties’, adding that Greens had ‘now made breakthrough gains three elections running’ and were expecting that trajectory to continue.
The loss of Wandsworth is a significant blow because of its symbolic status in London. It turned blue in 1978, a year before Thatcher’s election as prime minister and was reputedly her favourite council, renowned for its low taxes.
‘Boris Johnson losing Wandsworth is monumental. This was the Tories’ jewel in the crown,’ a Labour source said.
Labour’s success in Barnet, which has a large Jewish population, will be seen as a sign the party has turned the corner on the anti-Semitism rows which dogged Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.
However, the leader of the Labour group of Barnet council, said this was less of a reflection on enthusiasm for his party and more a reflection of disillusionment with the Tories. Barry Rawlings told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme: ‘I’ll be honest, it’s not us being wonderful.
‘I think a lot of Conservatives haven’t voted this time, I think they feel alienated from No 10 and that they are, I don’t know, they’ve been disappointed with Boris Johnson and so not voting and I think that’s made a difference as well.’
Council seats are up for grabs in Scotland, Wales and many parts of England, while there are elections to Stormont in Northern Ireland. In Northern Ireland, Sinn Fein is expected to become the largest party for the first time, with results expected from lunchtime.
Votes were only being counted in some of the English contests overnight, including key authorities in the capital. Counting in many English authorities, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will not begin until later on Friday.
Rutland Tory council leader RESIGNS from party as polls close and accuses government of ‘ignoring’ his county
A council leader has resigned from the Conservative Party after accusing the government of ‘ignoring’ his county.
Oliver Hemsley says he will continue leading Rutland County Council as an independent after announcing his resignation from the Conservative Group shortly after local election polls closed.
Mr Hemsley said inequalities in Rutland have been ‘compounded year-on-year’ because of council tax and accused the government of ‘ignoring and sidelining’ the council despite repeated requests for help.
The next elections for Rutland County Council won’t take place until next year, though the Lib Dems won one seat being contested on Thursday.
Meanwhile, Marc Bayliss, the Tory leader of Worcester City Council, told reporters he was heading home early from the election count and is anticipating a disastrous night for his party.
Mr Bayliss blamed partygate and said the public had found the government’s performance ‘wanting’.
He added: ‘I think it is fair to say we are having a bad night.’
His comments were echoed by the leader of the Conservatives on Sunderland Council, Antony Mullen, who called for Boris Johnson to step down.
The contests are the first chance for voters to have their say since the Prime Minister and Chancellor Rishi Sunak were fined for breaking coronavirus laws and the party was hit by other scandals including Neil Parish quitting after admitting he watched pornography in the Commons.
The squeeze on household finances is also a major issue, as the Bank of England made clear on Thursday – with interest rates rising to 1%, inflation forecast to hit more than 10% and the economy predicted to contract in the final three months of the year.
The Prime Minister was reported to have told aides yesterday that his party was ‘going to get our a*** kicked’. And his fears appeared to be coming true with his party facing losses across England as the first results were announced.
Mid-term elections are always difficult for a governing party, although as many of the English seats were last contested in 2018, during Theresa May’s chaotic administration, opportunities for opposition parties to make further gains may be limited.
A Tory source conceded ‘we expect these elections to be tough’.
Liberal Democrat peer Baroness Kramer said she was ‘obviously delighted’ her party had taken control of Hull council. She told Sky News the party had had ‘high hopes in Hull’, adding that ‘big significant local issues’ like the number of GPs locally came up on the doorstep, as well as the cost of living crisis and the Partygate scandal over lockdown-busting gatherings.
In Rutland, where there is not even an election, the Tories suffered a setback as county council leader Oliver Hemsley announced he was leaving the party, claiming the area had been ‘ignored, side-lined and given no further improvements in our spending power’ from the Government.
Labour’s campaign has been hit by Tory calls for Durham Police to look into whether Sir Keir broke Covid rules while campaigning before the 2021 Hartlepool by-election – something he has dismissed as ‘mudslinging’.
The Tories have also complained about a secret pact between Labour and the Lib Dems to maximise Conservative pain in marginal seats, something denied by both opposition parties.
Labour Party chair Anneliese Dodds acknowledged there would be ‘ups and downs’ in the results but said she hoped they would show progress since the 2019 general election drubbing under Jeremy Corbyn.
More than 4,000 council seats are up for grabs in England, including in all 32 London boroughs
A ballot box is delivered to the Basildon Sporting Village, in Essex, as counting began across the country
A disastrous result for Boris Johnson’s party could spark fresh efforts among Tory MPs – many of whom are still seething at Covid rule-breaking in Downing Street – to oust the Prime Minister from Number 10
If Sir Keir Starmer fails to achieve a convincing result – especially in the ‘Red Wall’ areas that turned Tory at the last general election – many in Labour will again question whether he really is the right man to lead the party’s fightback
A total of 200 local authorities held elections yesterday – including every seat in Scotland, Wales and London
In England, more than 4,000 councillors in 146 councils are standing for election in major cities including Leeds, Manchester, Birmingham and all 32 London boroughs.
All 32 councils in Scotland and all 22 in Wales are also holding elections. In Northern Ireland voters went to the polls across 18 constituencies to elect 90 MLAs. The unionist DUP and republican Sinn Fein are vying for the top spot in the election, which comes with the entitlement to nominate the next first minister.
A unionist party has always been the biggest in the Assembly, and previously the Stormont Parliament, since the formation of the state in 1921.
While the office of the first and deputy first minister is an equal one with joint power, the allocation of the titles is regarded as symbolically important.
The local election battlegrounds that could decide the PM’s fate
Here are some of the key contests to look out for in each region of England, as well as in Wales and Scotland.
Bury – estimated declaration time, 8.30pm Friday May 6
Bury has all of its 51 seats up for grabs this year. Labour has run the council since 2011 but has only a small majority and will want to improve its position in what is the party’s traditional heartland of Greater Manchester. Bury’s status in this year’s elections was reflected by the fact Sir Keir and Mr Johnson both visited the town during the campaign. (E)
Bolton – 12.30am Friday May 6
Bolton is another key test for Labour in Greater Manchester, but here it is hoping to take back control from the Conservatives who have run a minority administration since 2019. A third of the council’s 60 seats are being contested. (12.30am)
Pendle – 4.30pm Friday, May 6
Pendle is being defended by the Conservatives, who won a slim majority last year. If the Tories lose two seats, the council will slip back into no overall control. Elections are taking place for 12 of the 33 seats. (4.30pm)
Cumberland and Westmorland & Furness – 1pm Friday, May 6
Two new unitary authorities that will elect councillors for the first time this year. The two authorities cover the whole of Cumbria. Cumberland is comprised of the former district councils of Allerdale, Carlisle and Copeland, while Westmorland & Furness covers Barrow-in-Furness, Eden and South Lakeland. All the main parties will be jostling for prominence in these new ‘super-councils’ and the outcome in both contests could be close. (Cumberland 2.30am, Westmorland & Furness 1pm)
Sunderland – 2am Friday, May 6
Run by Labour since 1973, but both the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats have made advances in Sunderland in recent years. A third of the council’s 75 seats are up for grabs this year, and if Labour suffers six or more losses it will lose overall control. Although Sunderland is part of Labour’s so-called ‘Red Wall’ – areas of the country that saw many Tory gains at the 2019 general election – all three Sunderland MPs are Labour and the party defied predictions in 2021 when it retained its majority on the council.
Hartlepool – 2am Friday, May 6
The Conservatives and Labour are fighting to be in with a chance of taking overall control of the council – or failing that, end up the largest party and lead a minority administration or a coalition. The Tories won the parliamentary seat of Hartlepool from Labour at a by-election in May 2021. A strong showing by independent candidates could spice up the outcome of this year’s contest. Some 13 of the council’s 36 seats are being contested.
Yorkshire & the Humber
Kirklees – 6.30pm Friday, May 6
Currently run by Labour but the party does not have a majority in Kirklees. A third of seats are being elected and just two gains by Labour would give it overall control. Both the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats are also hoping to do well.
Wakefield – 5pm Friday, May 6
A Labour stronghold and is not likely to change hands, but the party will be hoping for a solid performance ahead of the expected parliamentary by-election in the city later this year, after Conservative MP Imran Khan was convicted of sexual assault. A third of seats are being contested.
Hull – 3.30am Friday, May 6
Hull is a two-way fight between Labour and the Liberal Democrats. Labour’s majority has been whittled away in recent years and the party goes into this year’s election defending a majority of one. A third of the council’s seats are in play and the Lib Dems are hopeful of victory. (3.30am)
Dudley – 4am Friday, May 6
A crucial test for both the Conservatives and Labour. The Tories hope to build on the slim majority they secured at the 2021 local elections, while Labour will want to halt the blue advance and make gains themselves. A third of the council is up for grabs. (4am)
Solihull – 1pm Friday May 6
Another West Midlands metropolitan council under Conservative control, but the main opposition is the Greens. The party has been slowly eating into the Tories’ majority and will hope to take a few more bites this year. One third of Solihull’s seats are being contested.
Nuneaton & Bedworth – 4am Friday May 6
Dominated by the Conservatives after a bumper performance in last year’s elections. Labour will hope to demonstrate it is making a comeback, having controlled the council as recently as 2018. Half of the 34 seats are holding ballots.
Newcastle-under-Lyme – 3pm Friday May 6
Set to be a battle royal between Labour and the Conservatives, with every council seat up for grabs and the Tories defending a tiny majority. Success here for Labour would suggest the party is winning back support in one of its target areas of country. The parliamentary seat of Newcastle-under-Lyme was won by the Conservatives in 2019 after being held by Labour for the previous 100 years.
Derby – 5am Friday May 6
Derby is currently run by the Tories as a minority party. Labour will be looking to make gains in another test of party’s ability to win back support in urban areas of central England. An unknown factor is the popularity of the Reform Derby party, based on the former Brexit Party, which is standing candidates in all the seats being contested. There are 17 of the council’s 51 seats up for grabs.
St Albans – 4pm Friday May 6
St Albans saw the Liberal Democrats make enough gains in 2021 to take overall control, but with a slim majority. The party will want to improve its numbers this year as an example of how it is now the main opposition to the Conservatives in parts of the so-called ‘Blue Wall’ of southern England. The entire council is up for election. (4pm)
Peterborough – 2.30am Friday May 6
A long-running Conservative-Labour battleground and for decades the council has see-sawed between a Tory majority and no overall control. It is currently run by a minority Conservative administration and Labour will want to make gains to show it is recovering in a city it lost to the Tories at the 2019 general election. A third of seats are being contested.
Basildon – 1am Friday May 6
This Essex battleground could provide clues to how the Conservatives are doing in the commuter belt around London. The party won control of the council last year and will hope to consolidate its position in elections for a third of its 42 seats.
Stevenage – 2.30am Friday, May 6
A commuter-heavy area in Hertfordshire, but this time it is Labour who will be hoping to make progress. The party has controlled the council continuously since its creation in 1973 but will want to show it can reverse the losses it made last year. A third of the seats are up for grabs.
Barnet – 7am Friday May 6
Labour’s top target in London for the third election in a row. The party failed narrowly to win control in 2014, while 2018 saw the council swing further towards the Conservatives, with local Labour members blaming the row over antisemitism in the national party. Labour needs to gain nine seats to form a majority. As with every council in London, all seats are being elected.
Wandsworth – 5.30am Friday May 6
Another long-standing Labour target, but here the party managed to increased its number of councillors in both 2014 and 2018. The Tories have held the council since 1978 and have made a point of charging residents one of the lowest average levels of council tax in the country, so a Labour victory would be of symbolic significance.
Hillingdon – 4am Friday May 6
This borough contains the constituency of the Prime Minister and has been controlled by the Conservatives since 2006. Labour is hoping to make gains, but the outcome is hard to predict as the size of the council is being cut from 65 to 53 seats.
Westminster – 3am Friday May 6
A flagship borough held by the Tories continuously since its creation in 1964. But Labour has slowly increased its number of councillors at recent elections and will want to make more progress this time. Given the current volatile political climate, plus a reduction in the size of the council from 60 to 54 seats, the final result could be close.
Harrow – 5pm Friday May 6
A council where the reduction in the number of seats from 63 to 55 could work in either Labour or the Conservatives’ favour. Labour won a narrow majority in both 2014 and 2018 but the borough’s electoral districts have been substantially redrawn for 2022 and both parties could profit from the new-look map.
Sutton – 4am Friday May 6
A Liberal Democrat-Conservative battleground that has been run by the Lib Dems since 1990. The party should retain control again this year, but the Tories will hope to make gains and chip away at the Lib Dems’ small overall majority.
Crawley – 2pm Friday, May 6
Has tilted between Conservative and Labour control in recent years but neither party has an overall majority. It would take only a couple of gains for either the Tories or Labour to take full control of a council deep in the commuter belt of West Sussex. A third of seats are being contested.
Gosport – 5pm Friday May 6
The council sees the Conservatives, who have only a small majority, under pressure from the second-place Lib Dems. All the seats are up for grabs and boundary changes across the borough means the outcome will be even more unpredictable.
Worthing – 2pm Friday May 6
A top Labour target and the party goes into the election level-pegging with the Conservatives on 17 seats each. The Tories currently run the council as a minority administration but Labour has made steady gains in recent years and is hoping to take full control this year. A third of seats are being elected.
Southampton – 5am Friday May 6
Another Labour target and winning control from the Conservatives would help demonstrate the party is building back support in southern towns and cities. The Tories are defending a majority of two and a third of the seats are being contested.
Somerset – 4pm Friday May 6
Undergoing major changes this year in its system of local government. Until now the area has had a county council and four district councils (Mendip, Sedgemoor, South Somerset and Somerset West & Taunton) but these are being scrapped and replaced with a single unitary authority. Elections are taking place for all 110 seats in the new-look organisation, with the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats fighting for control.
Blaenau Gwent – 3pm Friday, May 6
This council has been run by a group of independents since 2017, some of whom used to be in the Labour Party. Labour is keen to take back control and might be helped by a reduction in the number of seats from 42 to 33.
Cardiff – 5pm Friday May 6
A key council for Labour, where the party will hope to defend its slim majority. The number of councillors is being increased slightly from 75 to 79, which might make the outcome more unpredictable.
Flintshire – 3pm Friday May 6
Sits in an area of Wales, the north east, where the Conservatives did well at the 2019 general election. The party won only six council seats in 2017 compared with Labour’s 34, so they are hoping to make an advance this year. For its part, Labour will want to remain the largest party and even win a majority, although the total number of seats is being cut from 70 to 67.
Aberdeenshire – 3pm Friday May 6
A Conservative stronghold, but like many councils in Scotland, power is shared between several parties. All councils in Scotland are elected using the single transferable vote (STV) system, where voters rank candidates and results are based on preferences rather than the winner-takes-all method used in England. This leads to many councils ending in no overall control, but encourages parties to work together either informally or as part of a coalition. The Tories have run Aberdeenshire in partnership with the Lib Dems and a group of Independents. Their success this year may hinge on the popularity in Scotland of the Tories’ UK leader Mr Johnson.
East Renfrewshire – 2pm Friday May 6
A three-way battle between the Conservatives, Labour and the SNP with each hoping to end up the largest party.
Edinburgh – 3.30pm Friday May 6
The council has been run by a joint SNP-Labour administration for the last five years, but the Conservatives head into this election as the largest party on the council. The Lib Dems and Greens have a smaller number of councillors but both will hope to make gains from the larger parties.
Glasgow – 4pm Friday May 6
The council has been run by the SNP since 2017 in what has been their first stint in control of the city, albeit as a minority administration. The party needs only a few gains to take full control, but Labour – which had previously run the city since 1980 – is keen to stop them.
Source: Daily Mail