NEW: PoliticsHome By-election Breakdown 07/12
PoliticsHome looks at this week's local council by-elections and predicts who's in, who's out, who's lost the plot.
PoliticsHome looks at this week's local by-elections and predicts who's in, who's out, who's lost the plot.
Flush from our success correctly predicting three out of four results last week, we have only two contests to ponder this week with ten more remaining next week before we begin 2018.
Enfield LB, Enfield Highway Ward (Labour died - 3 candidates: Con, Lab, Green)
Election results 2002: Con 1459/1396/1387, Lab 1300/1223/1199
Election results 2006: Lab 1540/1419/1406,Con 1250/1093/1036, SCF 886, UKIP 496
Election results 2010: Lab 3003/2876/2850, Con 2038/1705/1690, LD 842, UKIP 537, BNP 450, Green 437
Election results 2014: Lab 2031/1959/1848, Con 842/788/547, UKIP 774, Green 409, BNP 289
The final London contest before the all-out local elections on 3rd May 2018 is not likely to throw up a particularly interesting result and people will note that it is only a green candidate who prevents it being a straight forward two horse race.
The ward of Enfield Highway is in the formerly marginal seat of Enfield North. Although this seat was snatched for the five year coalition parliament of 2010 - 2015 by Tory Nick de Bois, it has since returned to the Labour MP first elected in 1997, (former Home Office Minister and Prime Minister Gordon Brown's envoy to Cyprus) Joan Ryan. She narrowly won it back in 2015 by 1,086 votes defeating de Bois, but in the snap election this year she was returned with her biggest majority yet of 10,247.
Whilst the local Conservatives have been out campaigning here, the 2014 numbers suggest they have a mountain to climb. Followers of the #LibDemFightback will be disappointed to note they don’t even have a candidate The Enfield Conservatives, and their candidate Andrew Thorp, are putting up a commendable fight over that classic council election issue of fly-tipping. The local Tories have spent their weekends out and about the streets of Enfield looking for piles of rubbish to point at. Who says politics is glamorous.....
Unfortunately for the blue team, their vote is in freefall in this area, and their chances of winning this seat are out with the bins.
This should be an easy hold for Labour and their candidate Ergun Eren who has been frequently out and about in the constituency with local Labour MP Joan Ryan. Perhaps laying the groundwork in case of an early election...
Prediction: Labour Hold
North Devon DC, Newport Ward (Conservative died - 4 candidates: Con, Lab, LD, Green)
Election results 2003: Con 431/391, LD 416/408, Green 286
Election results 2007: Con 623/611, LD 495/470,Green 450/286
Election results 2011: Con 624/557, LD 498/394, Green 353/200, Lab 143
Election results 2015: Con 1025/889, LD 812/510, Green 728/477
Our only real scrap this week is between the Tories and the Lib Dems in North Devon.
Defending for the Tories is Martin Kennaugh. The local town councillor and school governor has been pulling in impressive numbers of activists for a cold December by-election, and local MP Peter Heaton-Jones has been out pounding the pavements in support.
Mr Kennaugh has also employed his very sweet looking dog to help get out the vote today. A shameless but very effective tactic.
While Scotland gets walloped by dreadful weather, the South West Constituency of North Devon is facing its own Storm Caroline. The unfortunately named Lib Dem candidate, and arch-remainer, Caroline Leaver is our favourite to blow away the opposition in North Devon.
With some strong familial ties to the Liberal Democrats, we are expecting that Leaver will be pulling in plenty of near-by activists for phone-bashing, a key element of any by-election takedown.
The yellow storm doesn’t show any sign of blowing out soon, so we are calling this one for the Lib Dems.
Former North Devon MP from 1992 to 2015 and Lib Dem Chief Executive Sir Nick Harvey has been in touch to offer his thoughts on our weekly feature ahead of today's contest in his old constituency:
“After our four wins last week I am training a keen eye on by-election results, and Politics Home is rapidly becoming my go-to tipster.
“I was in the Newport ward of North Devon on Saturday and we certainly received a warm reception. We won a by-election nearby last week.
“This is a challenging ward for us but as the Liberal Democrats continue our recovery under Vince Cable, I am quietly confident of a few victories over the bookies in the coming year.”
Prediction: Lib Dem Gain
A massive credit goes to our fellow council by-election fanatics on the Vote UK Forum where we got our previous vote totals from.
So far we have predicted 34 out of 42 results correctly.