Last, but not least, it’s a look at the town and community council results in Bridgend (pdf), bringing my coverage of the 2017 local elections to a close.
Community councillors are at the lowest rungs of the political ladder and perhaps don’t get the respect and credit they deserve. It’s an unpaid role that requires at least several hours of a councillor’s time every month and it’s a struggle to get people to stand in the first place; but town & community councils are often responsible for things we would otherwise take for granted.
I was wondering how to approach this, but decided to do it on a council by council basis rather than by party. Those councillors in itallicshave also been elected or re-elected as Bridgend county councillors (results here).
It’s important to repeat, and note, that many town and community councils are run on a non-political basis, so party/group membership doesn’t necessarily matter so much.
Bridgend Town Council (19 seats)
- Conservative: Carolyn Webster, Matthew Voisey, Lyn Walters
- Independent (Change for Bridgend): Freya Bletsoe, Steven Bletsoe, Stuart Charles, Ceri Evans, Eric Hughes, Rebecca Porter, Isabel Robson, David Unwin, Paul Warren, Alan Wathan, Tim Wood
- Labour: Stuart Baldwin, Kate Boucher, Nicole Burnett, Angela Morelli, Gary Sassoon-Hales
A big swing to Independents has seen Change for Bridgend take overall control with a comprehensive victory, winning a majority of the seats in Newcastle and Morfa, and Oldcastle seats split equally between themselves, the Tories and Labour. Unaffiliated Independent and former Labour man, Haydn Morgan, lost both his county council and town council seat.
Maesteg Town Council (17 seats)
- Independent (Llynfi Independents): Lynne Beedle, Dave Evans, Keith Edwards, Philip Jenkins, William May, Stephen Smith, Leighton Thomas, Ross Thomas, Idris Williams
- Labour: Gary Bevan, Richard Collins, Paul Davies, Rhys Davies, Rob Lewis, Andrew James, Ceri Reeves, Phil White
The Llynfi Independents pull off a stunning – but very close – victory, with Labour losing control of Maesteg Town Council in an election for the first time ever by a single seat. I doubt Labour will care too much because they kept the majority of the county council seats in the Llynfi Valley, but symbolically it’s a major defeat.
Pencoed Town Council (13 seats)
- Conservative: John Butcher, Jamie Wallis, Alex Williams, Julia Williams
- Labour: Melanie Evans, Jim Hancock, Mair Jones, Tracey Lyddon, Alex Owen, John McCarthy, Jillian Ryan, Bridie Sedgebeer, Richard Williams
Labour retain control of the council despite a surge in the Tory vote. Plaid Cymru have technically lost a seat (which was co-opted), though somehow I doubt Tim Thomas will be particularly disappointed with that after his county council victory in Ynysawdre.
Porthcawl Town Council (19 seats)
- Conservative: Mary Emment-Lewis, Robert Lee, Bobby Lewis, Alun Thomas
- Green: Alex Harris
- Independents (Porthcawl Independents): Sean Aspey, Mark Chegwin, Mike Clarke, Norah Clarke, Lorrie Desmond-Williams, Tracy Hill, Brian Jones, Richard Leonard-Davies, Steve Maitland-Thomas, Les Tallon-Morris, Graham Walter, Christopher Wintle
- Independent (Unaffiliated): Chris Smart
- Labour: Paul Winstanley
A crushing victory for the Porthcawl Independents, taking control of the town council at a canter (without former UKIP man, Chris Smart’s, “help”). Based on the votes, if all of the wards had been contested it’s a racing certainty Labour would’ve been wiped out in the town having lost five seats. Alana Davies – former Labour Bridgend Council cabinet member – also makes her exit from politics.
Brackla Community Council (11 seats)
- Conservative: Tom Giffard, Terry Hacking, Aniel Pucella, Kay Rowlands
- Labour: David Aston, June Brett, Ian Hibble, Ciaron Jackson, Craig Jones, John Spanswick, Hailey Townsend
In a bit of good news for Labour, they retained overall control of the community council having only lost a single seat. The Tories have increased their number and after taking 3 of the 4 county council seats in Brackla, will perhaps be kicking themselves that they only put up four candidates; they completely outstripped Labour in terms of votes for individuals.It was an unexpectedly poor showing by Independents as they all fell short by at least 100 votes apiece.
Cefn Cribwr Community Council (10 seats)
- Labour: Huw David, Diana Dimond, David Evans, Daryl Hall, Martin Goudge, Christopher Holmes, John Johnson, James Short, Ian Thomas
- Vacancies: 1
The election was uncontested with Labour retaining overall control.
Coity Higher Community Council (11 seats)
- Independents (Change for Bridgend): Dean Barrington, Ceri Evans, Alison Hughes, Luke Richards, Alan Wathan, Martin Williams
- Labour: Alun Dodd, Cherie Jones, Christopher Walburn, Richard Young
- Lib Dems: Anita Davies
Another impressive performance by Change for Bridgend, who took overall control from Labour and, as a result, the Unaffiliated Independent, Ella Dodd, has lost both her community council and county council seat. A rare bit of good news for the Lib Dems too, whose candidate finished second of six in Pendre. Cornelly Community Council (9 seats)
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Susan Bennett, Neil Dewar, Suhail Khaliq, Dorian Morgan, Les Rose, Jeff Tildesley, Andrew Williams
- Labour: Richard Granville, Gemma Hartnoll.
Independents comfortably retained control of Cornelly – which has traditionally voted that way – actually managing to gain a seat from Labour in the process.
Coychurch Higher Community Council (7 seats)
- Labour: Lilian Davies, Judith McCarthy, Alex Owen, Robert Owen
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Susan Joseph, John Powson
- Vacancies: 1
The election was uncontested with Labour retaining overall control.
Coychurch Lower Community Council (7 seats)
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Jayne Brace, Philip Davies, Helen Evans, Penelope Gwilliam, Deryn Martin, Bruce Nash, Kenneth Smith
No change, with seven Independents re-electedand Plaid Cymru’s candidate, Richard Jenkins – whose participation made this a contested election for a change – falling 34 votes too short.
Garw Valley Community Council (13 seats)
- Independents(Change for Bridgend): Jonathan Davies, Sorrel Dendy, Chris Lloyd, Michelle Pinches, Roz Stirman
- Labour: Cliff Andrews, Ryan Clatworthy, Derek Griffiths, Heather Griffiths, Billy Hillier, Martyn Jones, Clive Sage, Marlene Thomas
Another strong performance by Change from Bridgend, but they couldn’t stop the council remaining in Labour hands, when it’s normally safe Labour. UKIP’s Glenda Davies failed to get elected, finishing 30 votes behind her nearest competitor.
Laleston Community Council (13 seats)
- Labour: Jon-Paul Blundell, Colin Davies, Pam Davies, Ian Griffiths, Steve Sloan, Charles Smith
- Lib Dems: Tony Berrow, Briony Davies, Roger Davies, Cheryl Green, Dave Harrison, Ian Spiller
- UKIP: Tom Turner
The council remains No Overall Control with Labour and the Lib Dems tied on 6 seats each after big gains for Labour. While they were guaranteed seats at this level elsewhere in the county, the Greens lost a seat here, as did the Conservatives, while UKIP retained theirs; it’s the first time in Bridgend a UKIP member has been directly-elected (the previous two were via co-options).
Llangynwyd Lower Community Council (7 seats)
- Labour: Iris Hill, Martyn Jones, Judith Morgan
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Derwyn Davies, Gloria Faulkner, June Roberts, Eirlys Webber
The election was uncontested with Independents gaining control from Labour.
Llangynwyd Middle Community Council (12 seats)
- Green: Thomas Muller
- Independent (Llynfi Independent): Idris Williams
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Michael Moore, Glynne Nicholls
- Labour: Helen Davies, Elaine Guscott, Dylan Jones, Ruban Pararajasingham
- Plaid Cymru: Dai Berry, Christopher Griffiths, Trystan Griffiths, Malcolm James
The council remains No Overall Control; Plaid have lost their plurality of seats, while Labour also lost a seat. The Greens make their debut in the Llynfi Valley, while the Llynfi Independents also win a seat, which increases the Independent complement to 3 in total.
Merthyr Mawr Community Council (7 seats)
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Iona McLaggan, Anne Morgan, Sarah Morris, Christine Taylor, David Unwin, Lyn Walters, Wendy Willis
The election was uncontested with Independents retaining control. Though it’s worth pointing out that Lyn Walters is a newly-elected Conservative county councillor, while David Unwin is a prominent member of Change for Bridgend.
Newcastle Higher Community Council (12 seats)
- Conservatives: Altaf Hussain
- Independent(Change for Bridgend): Lee Robson
- Independent (Unaffiliated): Meryl Wilkins
- Labour: Derrick Baker, Heidi Bennett, David Fowler, Gary Haines, Joyce Haines, Ann John, Byron Jones
- Plaid Cymru: Sarah Parry
- Vacancies: 1
There are significant gains for Labour here, but before they get too excited I’ve been told that, officially, Newcastle Higher is a non-political community council so it would be No Overall Control even if a party won a majority of seats. Technically speaking though it’s a Labour gain.
Ogmore Valley Community Council (15 seats)
- Labour: Geunor Evans, John Lusardi, Dhanisha Patel
- Independents (Change for Bridgend): Andrew McKay
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Darren Browning, Janet Harris, Lee-Anne Hill, David Lake,
- Vacancies: 7
The election was uncontested due to a shortage of candidates, with Independents gaining nominal control from Labour. You would probably expect the abnormally high number of vacant seats to be filled mainly through Labour co-options, so whether that nominal control lasts remains to be seen.
Pyle Community Council (9 seats)
- Labour: Gina Hooper, Clive James, Pauline James, Allan John, Kay John, Andrea Jones, Mike Kearn, Andrew Radmore, Cilla Workman.
No change.Labour retain control with relative ease.
St. Brides Minor Community Council (13 seats)
- Independent (Change for Bridgend): Sally Hyde, Luke Richards, Martin Williams
- Independent (Unaffiliated): Felicity Watkins
- Labour: Shirley Dobbs, Peter Harris, Lyn Jones, David Lewis, Janice Lewis, Mel Nott, Yvonne Nott, Jean Phillips, Gary Thomas
Labour retain control with a comfortable majority, but Independents increase their number.
Ynysawdre Community Council (10 seats)
- Independents (Unaffiliated): Alice Card, Paula Gilmore, Roy Gilmore, Christopher Lavis, Geoffrey Letman, Frances Thomas, Philip Williams
- Vacancies: 3
No change, Independent hold and you would expect any co-options to fill the vacancies to be Independents as well.