Wirral’s Labour group lost seats on a tough night of local elections that have left the council in an even more precarious position.
Labour is still set to lead the council, but now has just 26 of Wirral’s 66 council seats. The party lost two seats to the Greens and one to the Tories on another bruising night.
They did however pick one seat up, from a councillor who defected from Labour after being elected in Rock Ferry in 2018 and then stood down.
Cllr Liz Grey, Labour councillor for Bidston and St James, said she was not worried about Labour losing the leadership of the council.
Cllr Grey said council leader Janette Williamson was a good leader and she was very confident her Labour colleague would stay on as council leader in a minority administration.
The seat count makes the night look a little worse for Labour than the party may argue it was.
While the party lost two key seats to the Greens and one to the Tories, it ran the Tories very close in several seats which appeared to be solid Blue territory before the night began.
Labour also held off the Greens in Seacombe, after the latter had talked up its chances of taking another previously rock solid Labour seat.
For the Conservatives, Cllr Jeff Green, who was elected in West Kirby and Thurstaston, said he thought it was a good night for his party. He added the Tories held on to all of its seats and gained one. In his view, the story of the night was the Tory gain in Pensby and Thingwall and Labour’s losses to the Greens.
Asked if he was concerned by the falls in Conservative majorities in previously safe seats, Cllr Green said he was not and that holding on was a sign of good campaigning.
How many seats do each party have in Wirral?
The result leaves Labour on 26 seats, two ahead of the Conservatives on 24.
Thanks to three gains, one from a vacant seat and the other two from Labour, the Green Party now has nine councillors, while the Lib Dems remain on six, despite nearly taking one from the Conservatives in Heswall.
All of this leaves the council on even more of a knife-edge than it was before.
- Labour - 26 seats
- Conservatives - 24 seats
- Greens - 9 seats
- Lib Dems - 6 seats
- Independent - 1 seats
Labour will have to negotiate even more with other parties to get its plans through and both the Conservatives and the Greens will claim a renewed mandate to argue more strongly for their policies.
Next year, all 66 of Wirral’s seats will be contested as the council moves to so-called ‘all out elections’.
Local election - detailed results for Wirral wards
- Bebington - Judith Deborah Grier - Green Party (gain from Labour)
- Bidston and St. James - Liz Grey - Labour
- Birkenhead and Tranmere - Pat Cleary - Green Party
- Birkenhead and Tranmere - Amanda Onwuemene - Green Party
- Bromborough - Sue Percy - Labour
- Clatterbridge - Mary Jordan - Conservative
- Claughton - Gillian Wood - Labour
- Eastham - Christopher David Carubia Liberal Democrats
- Greasby, Frankby and Irby - Tracy Elzeiny - Conservative
- Heswall - Paul Connolly - Conservative
- Hoylake and Meols - Tony Cox - Conservative
- Leasowe and Moreton East - Angie Davies - Labour
- Liscard - Janette Williamson - Labour
- Moreton West and Saughall Massie - Vida Claire Wilson - Conservative
- New Brighton - Sue Powell-Wilde - Labour
- Oxton - Allan John Brame - Liberal Democrats
- Pensby and Thingwall - Leah Fraser - Conservative (gain from Labour)
- Prenton - Naomi Jane Graham - Green Party (gain from Labour)
- Rock Ferry - Chris Davies - Labour
- Seacombe - John Joseph Hoey - Labour
- Upton - Stephen Bennett - Labour
- Wallasey - Lesley Ann Rennie - Conservative
- West Kirby and Thurstaston - Jeff Green - Conservative