The Tories may be celebrating in many places. But in Stratford on Avon they must be — for the second year in a row — wringing their hands and wondering how things could continue to go so badly wrong. Although they picked up Alcester in the County Council elections — agonisingly, for us, winning by 5%, which was less than the votes taken out by the Green party choosing to stand — they lost Studley, which includes rural areas such as Mappleborough Green, as well as handing over both of the Stratford South seats. We also held on to Stratford Avenue & New Town and Bidford-on-Avon: a net gain of two seats to the Lib-Dems, and a net loss to the Tories of two, for a total swing of four seats.
Tories are probably right now at their long-term peak of popularity. It does not bode well for them to be losing held seats in Stratford during what is otherwise their most successful county council result in generations.
My congratulations go to Peter Balaam, Kate Rolfe, Ron Cockings and Martin Barry for their new titles of County Councillor, and to Peter Barnes for his successful re-election. My deepest sympathies go to Nina Knapman, whose hard work for so many people should have been rewarded in Alcester.
The Stratford on Avon constituency results, along with a net no-change for us across the rest of Warwickshire, gave the Lib-Dems 12 seats on the county council, thereby pushing Labour into third place, and making us the official opposition.
At the time of writing, Lib-Dems are predicted to have picked up 28% of the vote nationally: a high water mark for us.