London mayor among the results due after Tories crushed in local elections – live

From 18m ago

Should Sadiq Khan be concerned?

Kiran Stacey

Starmer’s campaign chiefs say they can win more seats than their national vote share would suggest by targeting voters in the more marginal parts of the country, even if it means losing support in urban areas where the party has traditionally done well.

The downsides of that strategy became apparent as Friday wore on, with officials becoming more downbeat about taking the West Midlands and more nervous about Khan winning a third term in London.

Sadiq Khan with his wife Saadiya Khan at a polling station in south London.
Sadiq Khan with his wife Saadiya Khan at a polling station in south London. Photograph: Yui Mok/PA

Sources said much of the loss of urban support was being driven by anger among Muslim and progressive voters about Starmer’s stance on Gaza.

One London Labour source said: “The polls [that predicted a 20-point lead for Khan] were completely wrong, this is going to be much closer than expected.”

One in Birmingham said: “It felt very tough in Birmingham. [Akhmed Yakoob, an independent candidate] is picking up over 50% in some inner-city wards, so the Gaza impact may be bigger than first estimated.”

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Starmer’s campaign chiefs say they can win more seats than their national vote share would suggest by targeting voters in the more marginal parts of the country, even if it means losing support in urban areas where the party has traditionally done well.

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The downsides of that strategy became apparent as Friday wore on, with officials becoming more downbeat about taking the West Midlands and more nervous about Khan winning a third term in London.

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Sources said much of the loss of urban support was being driven by anger among Muslim and progressive voters about Starmer’s stance on Gaza.

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One London Labour source said: “The polls [that predicted a 20-point lead for Khan] were completely wrong, this is going to be much closer than expected.”

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One in Birmingham said: “It felt very tough in Birmingham. [Akhmed Yakoob, an independent candidate] is picking up over 50% in some inner-city wards, so the Gaza impact may be bigger than first estimated.”

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On 2 May, 107 English councils held elections with more than 2,000 seats being contested. Some were for metropolitan boroughs such as Manchester city council and others for unitary authorities such as Bristol or Dorset. Both structures are single-tier authorities with responsibility for the whole range of council services, including education, social care, rubbish collection and parks.

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There were elections for 58 district councils, lower-tier authorities whose responsibilities are more limited, but include planning, housing and recycling. District councils typically elect a third of their seats each year on a four-yearly cycle, and elect the upper tier council — usually the county council — in the fourth year.

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There were elections in London for the London assembly as well as 11 mayors including those of London, greater Manchester and Liverpool. These were subject to changes in their voting system since the last time they were up for election. They are now elected on a first past the post basis. Police and crime commissioners were also up for election.

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The spread of the Conservative losses led one former minister to claim there was “no such thing really as a safe Tory seat any more”, but the prime minister appeared committed to clinging on until polling day, with rebels in his own party lacking the support to oust him.

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The polling expert Prof John Curtice of Strathclyde University said the results added up to “one of the worst, if not the worst” performances by the Conservatives in four decades.

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The party is expected to lose up to 500 seats when all votes are counted, with Labour advancing in areas of both the “red wall” north won by the Tories under Boris Johnson and the traditional southern Conservative heartlands.

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Keir Starmer hailed “seismic” results, including winning a landslide byelection in Blackpool South, with the third largest swing since the second world war, as well as mayoralties in the East Midlands, North East and North Yorkshire, which covers Sunak’s own constituency.

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Labour also ousted a number of Tory police and crime commissioners, and took control of at least seven new councils, including in Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hampshire and Sussex in the south of England.

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We’re restarting our live coverage of the local and mayoral elections results in England.

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The results of mayoral elections in Greater Manchester, London and the West Midlands are among those expected today.

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My colleague Rowena Mason has this report on yesterday’s results, which showed the Tories facing one of their worst local election results in 40 years, with striking Labour gains across England and Wales in key battlegrounds they need to secure victory at the general election.

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You can also see a full list of the results across England

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We’ll bring you the latest updates throughout the day.

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Key events

Steven Morris

Steven Morris

The Greens were celebrating a spectacular win in Bristol yesterday, where it became by far the largest party, as it headed for a record number of councillors in local elections across England.

Party officials said they believed they were on track to finish with more than 800 members on more than 170 councils.

In Bristol they fell narrowly short of taking overall control, winning 34 of the 70 seats and leaving Labour trailing a distant second with 21. The Bristol Green group, which will lead the council, becomes the largest the party has had.

Carla Denyer, the co-leader of the party in England and Wales, said it was an “exciting result”, telling the Guardian:

It’s really encouraging to see so many voters are giving their confidence to the Greens. It’s also a very promising sign for the general election.

The party picked up all 14 seats in the heart of the city, a boost to its chances of winning the Westminster seat of Bristol Central.

Boris Johnson has thanked three villagers who turned him away from a polling station on Thursday for attempting to vote without a valid ID.

Writing for the Daily Mail, Johnson said he attempted to use a copy of Prospect magazine as a form of identification, but was turned away by local electorate officials.
Mr Johnson wrote:

I want to pay a particular tribute to the three villagers who on Thursday rightly turned me away when I appeared in the polling station with nothing to prove my identity except the sleeve of my copy of Prospect magazine, on which my name and address had been printed.

I showed it to them and they looked very dubious… within minutes I was back with my driving licence and voted Tory.

The requirement to provide photo ID was introduced by Mr Johnson during his time in Downing Street as part of the Elections Act 2022.

Kiran Stacey

Beneath the euphoria of Labour’s wins in places such as Blackpool, Hartlepool and Thurrock lies a nervousness about the party’s performance in urban areas, with campaigners warning it had lost ground in both London and Birmingham.

By Friday afternoon, the party had gained more than 140 council seats and won the Blackpool South byelection with the third biggest swing in post-war history. But party sources said they were not confident of winning the marginal West Midlands mayoral race and that the Tory candidate for the London mayoralty, Susan Hall, could also run Sadiq Khan unexpectedly close.

Rob Ford, a professor of politics at the University of Manchester, said:

The Labour strategy was to do better in parts of the country they had lost since 2016: leave areas, more rural areas, more Tory areas, whiter areas. They have done better across the board in all those areas.

They also have seen trouble brewing up on their left flank. There has been a substantial loss of support in heavily Muslim areas and they are going backwards a bit in progressive areas and areas with students. It is progress at a price.

Recap: what are these elections?

On 2 May, 107 English councils held elections with more than 2,000 seats being contested. Some were for metropolitan boroughs such as Manchester city council and others for unitary authorities such as Bristol or Dorset. Both structures are single-tier authorities with responsibility for the whole range of council services, including education, social care, rubbish collection and parks.

There were elections for 58 district councils, lower-tier authorities whose responsibilities are more limited, but include planning, housing and recycling. District councils typically elect a third of their seats each year on a four-yearly cycle, and elect the upper tier council — usually the county council — in the fourth year.

There were elections in London for the London assembly as well as 11 mayors including those of London, greater Manchester and Liverpool. These were subject to changes in their voting system since the last time they were up for election. They are now elected on a first past the post basis. Police and crime commissioners were also up for election.

‘No such thing as a safe Tory seat any more’

Rowena Mason

Rowena Mason

The spread of the Conservative losses led one former minister to claim there was “no such thing really as a safe Tory seat any more”, but the prime minister appeared committed to clinging on until polling day, with rebels in his own party lacking the support to oust him.

The polling expert Prof John Curtice of Strathclyde University said the results added up to “one of the worst, if not the worst” performances by the Conservatives in four decades.

The party is expected to lose up to 500 seats when all votes are counted, with Labour advancing in areas of both the “red wall” north won by the Tories under Boris Johnson and the traditional southern Conservative heartlands.

Keir Starmer hailed “seismic” results, including winning a landslide byelection in Blackpool South, with the third largest swing since the second world war, as well as mayoralties in the East Midlands, North East and North Yorkshire, which covers Sunak’s own constituency.

Labour also ousted a number of Tory police and crime commissioners, and took control of at least seven new councils, including in Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hampshire and Sussex in the south of England.

Good morning

We’re restarting our live coverage of the local and mayoral elections results in England.

The results of mayoral elections in Greater Manchester, London and the West Midlands are among those expected today.

My colleague Rowena Mason has this report on yesterday’s results, which showed the Tories facing one of their worst local election results in 40 years, with striking Labour gains across England and Wales in key battlegrounds they need to secure victory at the general election.

You can also see a full list of the results across England

We’ll bring you the latest updates throughout the day.

Share

Updated at 07.25 BST

The Guardian