Number of candidates for each of the main parties in Essex’s local elections next month

Lab Con LDem UKIP Grn Oth
Basildon 14 14 11 14 4
Braintree 50 46 9 20 20 4
Brentwood 12 12 10 10 4
Castle Point 14 14 8 8
Chelmsford 43 57 51 29 14 8
Colchester 20 20 20 14 20 3
Epping Forest 7 16 10 8 7 2
Harlow 12 12 7 12
Maldon 11 31 1 6 9 12
Rochford 9 13 1 11 2 10
Southend-on-Sea 19 19 19 9 18 14
Tendring 46 60 4 37 5 21
Thurrock 16 16 1 16 3
Uttlesford 23 39 24 7 3 36
296 369 168 201 98 129

This gives a rough idea of the relative strength across the county of the parties in terms of ground troops. Of course, this does not always translate into votes.

I am disappointed that Labour’s tally of candidates is not closer to the Tories, and this is a regular complaint of mine. However, in a county that is not always receptive to Labour voices we are still comfortably the second strongest.

UKIP are fielding more than the Lib Dems. It is a patchy story for the Lib Dems, who are all but extinct in quite a few places at the moment. Their decline in Rochford is quite noteworthy. The UKIP tidal wave has not quite materialised though, although there does appear to be informal pacts with independents in some places..

The Green party will claim this is a good slate for them, although it does not match the hyperbole put out by some of the more excitable commentators.

And the really good news? Not one far right candidate.

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