Saturday, 20 December 2014

Quarter Four Local By-Election Results 2014

Party
Number of candidates
Total vote
%
+/- 
Q2
Average/
contest
+/- 
Q3
+/- Seats
Conservative
          72
36,322
  29.0%
+0.9%
     504
 +115
   +1
Labour
          67
29,952
  23.9%
 -2.5%
     447
   +57
    -4
LibDem
          44
13,440
  10.7%
 -3.6%
     305
   +18
   +3
UKIP
          60
23,648
  18.9%
+3.7%
     394
 +124
   +3
SNP*
            6
  7,200
     5.8%
+5.1%
  1,200
 +605
   +3
Plaid Cymru**
            3
     702
     0.6%
 -0.1%
     351
 +123
   +1
Green
          32
  3,257
     2.6%
 -1.6%
     102
      -9
     0
BNP
            1
       17
     0.0%
+0.0%
       17
    -41
     0
TUSC
            8
     219 
     0.2%
+0.1%
       27
     +8
    0
Independent***
          31
  9,121
     7.3%
+1.0%
     294
   +87
    -2
Other****
            7
 1,248
     1.0%
 -3.0%
     178
 -119
    -5

* There were six by-elections in Scotland.
** There were five by-elections in Wales.
*** There were three contests with independent clashes this quarter.
**** 'Other' this quarter were Justice (10), OMRLP (27) EngDem (5), Derwentside Ind (655), Canvey Island Ind (323), Community Action (29) and Lincolnshire Independents (199).

125,126 votes were cast over 75 individual local authority (tier one and tier two) contests. Fractions are rounded to one decimal place for percentages, and the nearest whole number for averages. You can compare these with Quarter Three 2014's results here.

So we enter the official long campaign with a set of local election numbers not looking too hot for Labour. On all the metrics it trails the Tories. The polls these last few days may place Labour in a healthier position, but these snapshots are real votes and the difference cannot be accounted for in terms of disproportionate numbers of contests being held in Conservative-tinged areas. This quarter has been that of the SNP surge, and there's no doubt they've ate part way into Labour's numbers. The Greens don't appear to have done however, despite the threat they are said to pose the party. Clearly there is no room for complacency.

UKIP are also doing extremely well. We shall see if their support starts dropping away as the election proper looms ever closer. Also of note, this is the third quarter in a row the Greens have out-organised the Independents. The significant membership growth is making a difference, though not having a hue impact on vote shares ... yet.

Local Council By-Elections December 2014

Party
Number of Candidates
Total Vote
%
+/- Nov
Average/
contest
+/-
Nov
+/-
Seats
Conservative
16
7,090
  29.2%
 -2.1%
     443
  -183
     0
Labour
17
6,493
  26.8%
+3.5%
     382
  -127
    -1
LibDem
10
2,443
  10.1%
+1.2%
     244
    -49
   +1
UKIP
15
4,472
  18.4% 
 -0.6%
     298
  -216
   +1
SNP*
  2
1,670 
    6.9%
+1.6%
     835
  -375  
  +1
Plaid Cymru**
  2
   598 
    2.5%   
+2.3%
     598 
 +494
   +1
Green
  5
   375
    1.5%
 -1.8%
       75
    -43 
     0 
BNP
  0
       0
     
       
   
     0
TUSC
  1
     29
    0.1%
 -0.2%
       29
      +3
     0
Independent***
  4
   882
    3.6%  
 -4.6%
     221
    -69
    -1
Other****
  1
   199
    0.8%
+0.7%
     199
 +170
    -2

* There were two by-elections in Scotland.
** There were two by-elections in Wales, a further one (held by PC) was uncontested.
*** There were no independent clashes.
**** The only 'other' this month was Lincolnshire Independents (199 votes)

Overall, 24,251 votes were cast over 19 local authority (tier one and tier two) contests. All percentages are rounded to the nearest single decimal place. In sum five council seats changed hands. For comparison see November's results here.

Anything of note this month? Not really, except, once again, the Tories have beaten Labour in the popular vote, despite the latter fielding one more candidate than the blues for the first time in, well, ever. The rest is the rest. The LibDems continue to win more votes than reported to the pollsters. So does UKIP as it happens. Meanwhile the much vaunted Green surge, while translating into a greater spread of seats contested, doesn't seem to be impacting their by-election vote shares much.

And there be your final set of by-election results for 2014. Whatever will the new year bring?