My psephologically-inclined Birkdale Ward colleague Simon Shaw has continued his by-election research, which he has now updated to the end of October.
Previous reports to the end of August and September showed a picture that was a lot better than some national opinion pollsters would have you believe.
Simon has updated his research to last Thursday, and it shows that there have been 146 principal council by-elections held in the 6 months to the end of October. Lib Dems made net gains of 2 seats in that period.
October saw 34 principal council by-elections. "Principal councils" cover everything above parish council level, i.e. the results include by-elections in county councils,
boroughs, district councils and metropolitan borough councils, in London , England and Scotland . Wales
In October, Lib Dems were net 1 seat down, with 5 seats successfully defended, 1 gain from Conservatives, but with 1 loss to Conservatives and 1 loss to Labour.
In detail, the movements between the parties in October are as below:
Labour continue to do well, normally winning a few seats off the Conservatives each month. This month, their gain of Barton and Sandhills Ward in Oxford City Council was their first such gain from the Lib Dems in over 3 months. That ward is within the Oxford East parliamentary constituency, one of only 4 constituencies in the South East region held by Labour.
Over the 6 months May – October 2010 Lib Dems are net 2 seats up: 21 successful defences and 10 gains more than compensating for 8 losses. Labour are net 16 seats up; Conservatives net 13 seats down and Others are net 5 seats down.
For the 146 by-elections in the 6 months post-General Election to the end of October, the detail of the movements between the parties are as below:
*Please note that the original version of this story omitted a by-election inCongratulations to Simon whose post made it to No1 in the Lib Dem Voice Golden Dozen
Council on 21 October, where Labour gained a seat off Lib Dems. Oxford City
Apologies! The story and tables have now been amended.