black adidas jacket Labour and Greens gain in Norwich City Council elections
It was a long night for the candidates and activists, because the AV referendum slips had to be verified before the counting of the local election papers could begin, even though he AV count will not take place until this afternoon.
A third of the seats were up for grabs and the Greens were delighted with their showing, after they took Thorpe Hamlet from the Lib Dems and saw off the challenge of Labour in Wensum and Mancroft.
The win in Thorpe Hamlet, which means the Greens, the opposition party at City Hall. now hold all three seats in the ward, was particularly sweet for the party, as in the 2007 election they lost out to Lib Dem Jeremy Hooke by a single vote.
But this time former Lord Mayor Mr Hooke came unstuck, slipping down to fourth place as Jo Henderson won the seat for the Greens with a majority of 575 over second placed Labour candidate Michael Stonard.
Labour had hoped to take Wensum and Mancroft from the Greens, where sitting councillors Rupert Read and current Lord Mayor Tom Dylan, were not standing.
However, Green candidate Amy Stammers saw off the challenge of Labour’s Marion Maxwell in Mancroft by 263 votes and Lucy Galvin garnered 1,375 Green votes to the 1,208 Vaughan Thomas got for Labour to hold onto Wensum.
Labour, did, however,
make gains in Catton Grove and Bowthorpe, both at the expense of the Conservatives.
In Catton Grove, former Lord Mayor Eve Collishaw’s 922 votes were not enough to see her keep her seat, with Labour’s Paul Kendrick tallying 1,152.
And in Bowthorpe, the 1,053 votes obtained by Andrew Wiltshire, Conservative group leader at City Hall, were eclipsed by the 1,381 who voted for Labour’s Mike Sands the husband of Sewell city councillor Sue Sands.
It was the second time in a matter of months that a Conservative group leader had been defeated in Bowthorpe.
Last September Antony Little was beaten by Labour’s Jo Storie and once again the Conservatives are left having to pick a new group leader.
On a tough night for the Lib Dems, they were relieved to hang onto Eaton ward, with Caroline Ackroyd holding the seat with a majority of 129.
The Conservatives had pushed hard in the ward, but Chris Groves was unable to take the seat which Ros Wright, wife of Norwich South MP Simon, had previously occupied before her decision not to stand this time around.
The question now is who will be the leader at City Hall?
Former council leader Steve Morphew did not stand in these elections, having decided to step down after 15 years as a councillor.