Tagged: South Jesmond

Lib Dems win North Jesmond by-election

Unpopular plans for communal bins by Labour-controlled Newcastle City Council helped the Lib Dems clinch a by-election in North Jesmond this week, it is claimed.

The victory means Gerry Keating, returns to Newcastle City Council two years after not standing in Blakelaw following 26 years as a councillor.

The by-election took place on Thursday due to the resignation of Peter Andras in July, who took up a teaching post at Keele University.

Cllr Keating, who registered 711 votes, said he had expected second place Labour candidate Peter Smith (320 votes) to run him closer but said communal bins plans from the authority’s Labour leadership helped his cause.

The former Royal Grammar School teacher explained: “There was a real swing in my favour over the last two weeks, which meant it went from being a two-horse race to a comfortable hold.

“It is difficult to be sure what exactly happened and how Labour managed to lose out on many of the votes it was expected to get, but I think it partly came down to the Labour council’s plans for communal bins which is not popular in Jesmond, as well as us being much better organised.

“What is clear is that West Jesmond does not want a Labour candidate.”

Labour’s cabinet is pushing for the scheme – in which wheelie bins six times bigger than normal ones are placed in back alleys behind properties and shared by residents instead of having individual ones – to enter wards neighbouring South Jesmond following a pilot scheme in early 2013.

Cllr Keating added: “I will bring a lot of experience to the role, and can ferret around in the nooks and crannies of local government.

“I have been out of the council for a couple of years but have been rejuvenated by the break and am up for it. When I became aware a seat was available in the ward where I live, I couldn’t miss out on the opportunity.”

The Lib Dem, who admitted he benefitted from the absence of students during Thursday’s ballot, said improvements to transport, particularly Acorn Road, was a priority, alongside the communal bin issue.

The by-election reflected a swing of 13.6 per cent from Labour to the Lib Dems since May when the latter party won by only 32 votes.

Conservative Duncan Crute received 117 votes,

UKIP’s Daniel Thompson scored 112 and

Shehla Naqvi of the Green Party took 94.

The current composition of Newcastle City Council is Labour 52, Lib Dem 24 and Independent 2.

Source –  Newcastle Evening Chronicle,  30 Aug 2014

Local Election Results 2014 Pt 2 – UKIP do even worse

> The rest of the results from Tyne & Wear…

 

NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE

It was a day that promised much for UKIP with rumours of winning a seat in Woolsington early on. Flopped again, though.

They  did come second in a number of seats, registering particularly highly in Walkergate with 843 votes and Benwell and Scotswood with 823, however outright victory eluded it.

In all 27 seats were up for grabs at Newcastle City Council, 16 previously held by Labour and 11 by the Lib Dems.

At the end of the count it was almost a case of “as you were” with Labour winning 17, the Lib Dems nine and Independent candidate Bill Corbett landing a spectacular success in Westerhope, taking the seat from Labour.

In some wards the Lib Dem vote collapsed but overall party leaders were visibly relieved that its support held up well compared to other parts of the country.

However its Chief Whip Tom Woodwark was the major casualty of the day when he lost out to Labour in South Jesmond.

Overall Labour won 45% of the vote, the Lib Dems 21.7%, UKIP 13.5% and the Tories 9.9%.

 

NORTH TYNESIDE

North Tyneside’s former elected mayor Linda Arkley failed to make a civic comeback after losing in the Tynemouth ward to Labour’s Sarah Day.

The seat was one of the most hotly contested and the Conservative candidate missed out on being elected by just 37 votes.

Current mayor Norma Redfearn said she was “overjoyed” Labour had managed to retain overall control of the council as well as gaining two additional seats in Wallsend and Chirton.

She said Labour had weathered many a protest vote in the past and were not worried about UKIP coming second in nine wards.

Their surge was down to the current Government’s record on job creation and the bedroom tax, she added. UKIP gained a 20% share of the vote overall although failed to win a seat.

Party member Marianne Follin, who also stood in Tynemouth, said: “It’s been said we are the fourth political party and we’ve proved that now.”

> What ? That you’re in 4th place ?  Behind the Lib Dems ? Nothing to boast about there !

The council is now made up of 44 Labour councillors, 12 Conservative and 4 Lib Dems.

 

GATESHEAD

Labour remained in control of Gateshead Council despite a strong UKIP showing.

Leader of the council, Mick Henry, thanked the public for their support to his party despite the Government cuts his borough currently faces.

He said: “Nothing has changed. Considering that we are suffering a 37% cut in the budget and we have had to take actions as a council, I am pleased that the Gateshead public have shown support for us in the circumstances.”

When asked about the number of votes secured by UKIP, Mr
Henry said: “Next year will be different.

“The European elections have helped them on this occasion and we are hoping it will be different next year.

“It’s the Liberal Democrats we need to worry about, and the actions of the Government.”

> It’s the Liberal Democrats we need to worry about – not a phrase you hear very often…

 

> The national media seems to be intent on boosting UKIP on the basis of these local elections, and even locally the Newcastle Journal was making statements like:

Asked for his response to Ukip’s success in Sunderland and the Yorkshire town of Rotherham, where the party won ten seats, Mr Balls said: …”

Pardon me ? Ukip’s success in Sunderland ? Did I miss something ?

They didn’t win a single seat ! That’s success ?

Neither did the Greens or Lib Dems, so they must be doing very well too, right ?

The truth is – and the Newcastle Journal and other local media have failed to point this out – before these elections UKIP had 2 local seats across the whole of Tyne & Wear, both in South Tyneside.

After these elections, they only have 1… and that perhaps only because that particular seat wasn’t up for election.

So across Tyne & Wear, which UKIP had been making noises about targeting, they won nothing and actually lost 50% of what they did hold.

Now there’s success and there’s success… and there’s also dismal failure. I think I know which category UKIP’s performance falls into.
As I interupted Ed Balls earlier, perhaps we should return to him for a moment…

So we have to understand that challenge (of UKIP). People want to know we will have tough controls on immigration, that you’re not going to be able to come here to work in our country and send benefits back to families at home “

In other words, some people are voting for UKIP, so lets steal their policies and hijack the closet racist vote.

Surely they learnt their lesson with New Labour’s desperate attempts to win the middle class vote ?

Evidently not.