Harlow Council District Election 2022: A reflection
Elections / Fri 6th May 2022 am31 11:22am
The Harlow Conservatives looked in celebratory mood on Thursday night and who can blame them.
They have retained control of the council for a second year and can crack on with their plans.
A glass half empty person might wonder why they have lost 2,860 votes but on a bright spring day in May, they continue to hold the balance of power by 21 seats to 12.
They lost two seats and gained two.
They retain their talented team. Their cabinet members all look like they have a plan, headed by a focussed boss in Russell Perrin.
There may be reshuffles. Perhaps a change of senior officers. Who can say?
They may well interpret the vote that they went relatively unscathed by Boris Johnson and the cost of living. Then again, they lost nearly 3,000 votes. Food for thought?
In many ways, the big year may be 2024 but with a week being a long time in politics, we will leave that for another day.
Labour may well need the weekend to reflect on this one. Two steps forward and two steps back?
Perhaps they will see the Mark Hall as the way forward. They lost by 494 in May 2021. They lost by 56 in July 2021 and now they have won by 39 in 2022.
However losing Bush Fair and Harlow Common will be disappointing. What they need is two candidates who are going to work these wards from Monday. Labour councillors have been reactive at best, invisible at worst in those two wards for too long.
Whereas the Cons vote dropped by 2,860, the Labour vote dropped by just 46.
But is it enough to sit and wait for the Tories to come back to you. Any runner will tell you that is a dangerous game to play.
The conclusion may be that Labour need to boost their numbers. Out of 87,000 residents, they seem to have just a dozen activists. They can’t compete with the Tories deep pockets. There has to be a plan B. But it cannot be beyond the wit of man to have forty regular campaigners.
They will be pleased to have new councillors in James Griggs but they must find a way for younger candidates (Aiden O’Dell, Ed Ray, Jake Shepherd) to come to the fore. Otherwise they will continue to be a worthy but ageing scrutiny committee.
Had a very good debut. We did wonder that for all their energy and enthusiasm, they would flatter to deceive.
When Jamie Gilbert made his surprise debut back in July, he received just 89 votes.
Last night, they polled 1,777 votes in total with the top performer being Yasmin Gregory in Old Harlow with 383 votes.
They really were a breath of fresh air into this election campaign.
They really did make a difference and we hope they are here to stay.
Can they grow? Time will tell. Niche market? Who knows? But the questions they ask won’t go away.
We look forward to hearing from them during the year.
The Harlow Alliance Party
We hope that Nick and Alan don’t give up. We hoped that they would turn into a version of the Havering Residents Party or Uttlesford First. They still could do so but maybe they need help from the legion of people on line who say that Harlow needs an alternative party.
Well done to every person who put themselves forward. In our experience, every candidate is different. In our experience, the only people who are the same are the people, who say they are all the same and want their ignorance like something they should be proud of.
Challenge head over the next twelve months. We hope the 8,925 people get what they have just voted for.
Very Good analysis,
A good analysis? The is an obvious flaw underpinning the analysis. It correctly states that the Tory vote was down by 2,860 when compared with 2021 and that the Labour was only down by 46. Labour had 8,925 votes in 2021 and 7,182 in 2022. The difference of 46 only can be arrived at if Dianne Abbott is doing the sums! Labour’s vote fell by 1,783. Therefore, the Tory vote fell by 24.2% whilst Labour’s fell by 19.5%. Perhaps the analysis should be reconsidered.
Were we disappointed not to have gained a Green councillor! Yes, ofcourse we were. Do we feel defeated? Heck no!! Are we here for the long haul? Too right!! Have we got a lot of work to do? Yup, we sure have!! Are we a dedicated, hardworking driven team? Absolutely!! Keep your eye on us because you know what happens to Greens grown in the spring... We spread & fast!! And you cant keep up with us, ontop of us or get rid of us!! The Harlow Green Party is here to stay!! 🌿💚🌿
In relation to Councillor Leppard’s contribution, he has scoffed at a benign comment by another contributor and made a simple thing into a conflict. All that was needed here was to correct the incorrect figure in the article. Diane Abbott bears has nothing to do with our local politics. So, what was the councillor’s point? That anyone who supports another political party must be innumerate? What I see here is boring partisan mud-slinging (again) that lacks logic. This is low-level behaviour on the part of our elected representatives. It is not persuasive. It needs to stop. Or - we need to start voting it out.