June 2, 2013 Leave a comment
(I am always amazed, anyway, that so many in my corner of Essex plump for the Conservatives. It is an illusion that the Tories are better for them and I am convinced that (in part at least) their success has been due to apathy and under-registration as much as it has had to do with being a well organised electoral machine.)
Having won last year we will be hoping to build on that success, and doubtless the Tories will be working to ensure it is a one-off. However it finally pans out, 2014’s battle will be crucial to who controls the council. Cllr Holdcroft’s administration has a wafer-thin majority of one at present, although a number of Independents are propping them up. Lose Milton again, and also lose in one or two other places and we will have a very interesting scenario to deal with at the Civic Centre.
The Liberal Democrat performance in Milton had one bright moment in 2003 when they were only 90 votes behind the winners. The Clegg bounce in 2010 did not give them the second spot again, although Labour were a mere four votes ahead. Since 2010 they have struggled, and last year only avoided fifth spot by one vote.
The Independents have fought hard but have made no real impact. The next two sets of elections will be held against the backdrop of national elections – these always adversely affect their vote. If they stand next year I think they will struggle. UKIP have stood just the once, where they manage 10.3% of the poll in 2010.