Friday, 5 June 2009

Somerset County Elections - Results as they come in

Should be a fascinating set of results from the County Council Elections today.  Currently the Lib Dems have a narrow majority at County Hall with 30 seats, Tories on 24 and Labour on 4 Obviously the Labour Party will be in trouble locally, they only hold three of the Bridgwater seats and Wellington, I'm hoping that there's no wipeout and we do hold onto at least one seat.  Turnout will be important to watch out for too, these seats were last held on General Election Day 2005 and saw turnouts as high as 77% in Upper Tone, the lowest being 47% in Bridgwater North & Central.  I would be surprised if there was any seat as high as 50% turnout this time around.

Annoyingly, SCC have decided to replace their 2005 election result web pages with their 2009 election pages, I have some data on the 2005 election, but if anyone was expecting swings and decent analysis I might be disappointing you.

10:30am - I actually feel sick, Bridgwater East & Bawdrip is the first seat up and it's a disaster for the Labour Party.  A swing of 22.4% from Labour to Conservatives mean that Labour go from 1st to 3rd.  Lib Dems have got to be disappointed going down slightly in share of the vote.   Small crumbs of comfort, Labour did have a new candidate and as the BNP were standing in the other Bridgwater seats a lot of effort went in those seats, but it's bad.  No turnout reported but looks to be about 27% down from 56% last time around. 

Bridgwater East & Bawdrip
Conservative 1,102 (58.6%, +27.9%)
Lib Dems 401 (21.3%, -2.3%)
Labour 379 (20.1%, -17.0%)
there was an independent last time who polled 8.7%

State of the Parties: LD 0 (+0), Con 1 (+1), Lab 0 (-1)

11:00am - The other three Bridgwater seats have declared, Labour's lost Bridgwater South, but managed to cling on by the fingernails in Bridgwater North & Central by 20 votes thanks to a good performance by UKIP

Bridgwater North & Central
Labour 489 (30.1%, -26.8%)
Conservative 469 (28.8%, +8.6%)
UKIP 251 (15.4%, +15.4%)
Lib Dems 223 (13.7%, -9.2%)
BNP 144 (8.9%, +8.9%)
Ind 50 (3.1%, +3.1%)

There's got to be a concern by the Lib Dems that they are not picking up the Labour vote.  It'll be clearer when there's some seats in the South Somerset and Mendip areas, but if I was a Tory I would be optimistic that Somerset's there for the winning.

State of the Parties: LD 0 (+0), Con 3 (+2), Lab 1 (-2)

11:10am - And there's the first Con/LD contest, Staplegrove (which is the area directly north of Taunton) switching from yellow to blue.  Don't have any swing info there, but a solid majority of 207 for the Tory.

State of the Parties: LD 0 (-1), Con 4 (+3), Lab 1 (-2)

11:25am - Results coming in thick and fast now.  Lib Dems look okay in their South Somerset seats, a slight swing to Tories in Crewkerne and in Yeovil West but not enough to worry the incumbents and a comfortable victory for Lib Dems in Taunton Fairwater to give a bit of hope to the Lib Dems in the Taunton Deane area.

State of the Parties LD 6 (-1), Con 8 (+3), Lab 1 (-2)

11:35am - Spoke too soon about the Lib Dems holding out in South Somerset.  South Petherton is a Tory gain from Lib Dems and Lib Dem leader Cathy Bakewell managed to squeak out a win in Coker.  By the way, 131 votes for a Communist in Coker?  not too shabby.  Meanwhile the BNP polled only 7.7% in Yeovil North & Central.

Lib Dem 1,454 (45.5%, -7.1%)
Conservative 1,365 (42.7%, +5.7%)
Green 249 (7.8%, -2.6%)
Independent 131 (4.1%, +4.1%)

State of the Parties LD 9 (-2), Con 10 (+4), Lab 1 (-2)

11:55am - Another seat falls to the Tories as they mop up the West Somerset seats, Minehead goes blue with a smallish swing in a straight LD/Con battle.  There's a string of Con holds and the Mendip results have been delayed, not sure why.

State of the Parties LD 10 (-3), Con 17 (+5), Lab 1 (-2)

12:10pm - Lib Dems hold both Chard seats, Jill Shortland in Chard South doing well to keep her Lib Dem share up.  But the Tories gain Somerton as well as Wincanton & Bruton and Highbridge and Burnham-on-Sea South.  Somerset will be a blue county for the next four years.  I was wrong about turnout, the range this year so far is from 23% in Bridgwater South to 55% in Taunton & Trull. 

State of the Parties LD 13 (-6), Con 21 (+8), Lab 1 (-2)

12:25pm - Everything going with serve at the moment, a string of holds from both yellow and blue corners mean that Conservatives are getting close to the winning post.  (that's enough sporting metaphors - ed).  Out of the 14 remaining seats, 13 are in Mendip (which are still coming up as delayed, the 14th is Andy Govier's seat for Labour in Wellington.  As I was typing that it came in, Andy winning comfortably with a shade over 50% of the vote, helped by the lack of a Lib Dem candidate. 

State of the Parties LD 17 (-6), Con 26 (+8), Lab 2 (-2)

12:45pm - Tories gain Castle Cary (which they had missed by 11 votes last time) and Frome North on their way to 29, just one more needed.  Long time Lib Dem Alan Gloak holds Glastonbury by 62 votes.  The remaining seats are in Wells parliamentary constituency where local Tory Heathcoat-Amory has been in trouble over his horse manure.

State of the Parties LD 21 (-8), Con 29 (+10), Lab 2 (-2)

1:40pm - The last seats start to trickle in, all Mendip seats are won easily by the Tories, clinching the victory.  All we're waiting for is Wells and Street.

State of the Parties LD 21 (-8), Con 33 (+10), Lab 2 (-2)

3:20pm - Don't know what kept them so long but Street finally declares, the last Tory gain of the election.

Final State of the Parties LD 21 (-9), Con 35 (+11), Lab 2 (-2)

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