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Luton Liberal Democrats hold Wigmore

Ballot papersOn Wednesday evening Alan Skepelhorn was elected to Luton Borough Council winning the local by-election for the Wigmore ward. This means that Luton Liberal Democrats have held on to this seat and we keep our numbers at 8 on the Council.

The by-election was held after the sad death of long-standing local campaigner Roy Davies.

I am really pleased. Not least because Alan was a colleague of mine when I was on the council — he was previously a councillor in Round Green ward — and I know what an asset he will be to the Lib Dem group.

But also because this was a really positive result for the Liberal Democrats in Luton. I think the local party was always hopeful of retaining the seat — but I am surprised at the size of the majority. This was a very bad result for the Tories — in effect dropping from second to third — and the Labour challenge was not as strong as I expected it to be. This actually represents a 3.1% swing from Labour to Lib Dems.

It is only one result and in a relatively strong area — but after the bashing we took in the last local elections — this does give some hope that the worst is over.

Credit must go to the small team who worked really hard to get this result. Myself, I didn’t really do much to help — but I did do a little — which is the most active campaigning I’ve done for a long while.

The full result was:

Alan Skepelhorn Lib Dem 982 47%
James Taylor Labour 517 24%
John Young Conservative 281 13%
Lance Richardson UKIP 230 11%
John Magill Independent 62 3%
Marc Scheimann Green 27 1%

Total Votes 2,102

Turnout 24.2%

(I gave the result from last time the ward was fought in May 2011 here)

More coverage of the result here:

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