Local Elections 2014: Labour win majority in Redbridge for first time ever - full report
PUBLISHED: 11:11 23 May 2014 | UPDATED: 17:12 27 May 2014
Labour has taken control of Redbridge Council for the first time in the borough’s 50 year history.
In a tense count that lasted all night, the party altogether gained 14 seats, including eight from Conservatives, five from independents and one from the Liberal Democrats. Despite ending the night with four fewer councillor than when it started, the Tories won three seats off Lib Dems in Roding and Church End.
Redbridge’s new council will be made up of 35 Labour councillors, 25 Tories and just three Lib Dems.
Labour group leader Councillor Jas Athwal said the victory marked the “proudest moment” of his political career as his party made significant gains in the north east of the borough and wiped out independent candidates who defected from Labour last year.
Cllr Wes Streeting, who is also Labour’s candidate for the Ilford North parliamentary seat in next year’s General Election, tweeted: “We’ve done it! We’ve won a Labour majority for the first time in the history of Redbridge!!!!!!! #labourgain”.
Swings to Labour in the wards of Hainault and Aldborough, which sit in the Ilford North constituency, provide encouragement for the party as it gears up to try and win it from Conservative Lee Scott in 2015.
Labour MP Chris Bryant tweeted: “Redbridge results show Cllr @wesstreeting well placed for 2015.”
Before today, Hainault ward had been split between two Conservatives and an independent. Aldborough was split between Labour and Tories. Now both wards have a full complement of Labour councillors.
In other interesting results, Council leader Cllr Keith Prince held on to his Barkingside seat, and the Lib Dems lost seats to the Tories in the wards of Roding and Church End.