Fri, 03 May 2019
AFTER months of campaigning, today is the day.
Votes have been cast and later on today, the results of the local elections will be announced.
Seats are up for grabs on both West Berkshire Council and Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council and the Newbury Weekly News' team of reporters and photographers will be at both counts bringing you all the results and reaction through the day.
West Berkshire Council is currently made up of 52 councillors representing 30 wards.
The ruling Conservatives hold 46 of the 52 seats, while the Liberal Democrats have five.
One seat is empty following the resignation of Conservative councillor Jeremy Bartlett just before the elections.
However, under new changes brought in for these elections, the number of councillors will reduce by nine – from 52 to 43 – while the number of wards will drop from 30 to 24.
A total of 142 candidates have gone head-to-head to occupy these 43 seats. Both the Conservatives and Labour fielded 43 candidates – one for every seat. The Lib Dems, meanwhile, fielded 36 candidates, the Greens 16 and UKIP four.
That's all folks - Conservative keep control of the council with 24 seats, Lib Dem have 16 and Green Party take 3.
Conservatives take both seats on Newbury Clay Hill
Jeff Beck (Conservative) 632
Danielle Louise Bryan (Green Party) 316
Jeff Cant (Conservative) 532
Gemma Elizabeth Lowe (Labour) 211
Lee Mcdougall (Labour) 163
Simon Everett Pike (Liberal Democrats) 354
Pamela Jean Lusby Taylor (Liberal Democrats) 519
Its a recount for the last ward - Newbury Clayhill
One more ward (two more seats) to go. As things stand, the Conservatives have 22 seats, the Lib Dems have 16 and the Green Party have three.
Two seats for the Conservatives in Chieveley and Cold Ash
Marc Charon (Labour) 103
Hilary Cole (Conservative) 1073
Chris Evans (Labour) 93
Jill Hoblin (Green Party) 572
David Robert Lister (Liberal Democrats) 530
Garth Whiteley Simpson (Conservative) 1000
James Colin Thomas (Green) 377
The Green Party claim another seat! That's three now as David Marsh is elected to Newbury Wash Common ward.
Adrian Neil Abbs (Liberal Democrats) 1830
Stuart Philip Davenport (Conservative) 842
Adrian Arthur Walter Edwards (Conservative) 1118
David Ralph Marsh (Green Party) 1794
Anthony Corbett Pick (Conservative) 916
Peter Charles Tullett (Labour) 167
Tony Vickers (Liberal Democrats) 1829
Andrew William Wallace (Labour) 168
Julie Caroline Wintrup (Labour) 253
THE GREENS WIN ANOTHER SEAT! History is being made here as Steve Masters is elected to Newbury Speen ward.
Robert Chapman (Labour)
Jeanette Clifford (Conservative)
Bert Clough (Labour)
Lynne Doherty (Conservative)
Tony Harris (Liberal Democrats)
Steve Masters (Green Party)
Newbury Central Lib Dem take both seats
Mark Andrew Beach (Labour) 196
Caroline Anne De Vere Ffrench Blake (Labour) 178
Joseph Alvin Clarke (Conservative) 535
Susan Millington (Green Party) 450
Andy Moore (Liberal Democrats) 957
Anthony Vincent Stretton (Conservative) 562
Martha Vickers (Liberal Democrats) 979
Conservative hold Lambourn
Charlie Lloyd Robert Christopher (Liberal Democrats) 254
Howard Robert Woollaston (Conservative) 667
Moz Bulbeck Reynolds (Labour) 136
Lib Dem take two seats and Conservative claim another in Burghfield and Mortimer
Graham Henry Bridgman (Conservative) 1148
John Patrick Hannawin (Labour) 556
Graham William Hudson (Labour) 246
Carol Ingrid Jackson-Doerge (Conservative) 1,126
Janet Lilian Bishop (Labour) 215
Royce Ekins Longton (Liberal Democrats) 1,293
Alison May (Green Party) 880
Geoffrey Brian Mayes (Liberal Democrats) 1173
Ian Christopher Morrin (Conservative) 1028
Lib Dem win both seats in Thatcham Central
Dave Burns (Labour) 129
Richard John Crumly (Conservative) 603
Paul John Field (Green Party) 289
Gary Huntley (Labour) 121
Marigold Mary Jaques (Conservative) 516
Owen Edward Jeffery (Liberal Democrats) 907
Nassar Kessell (Liberal Democrats) 766
David John McMahon (UKIP) 242
Conservatives take both seats on Tilehurst Birch Copse ward
Gary Brampton (Green Party) 349
Louise Harriet Coulson (Labour and Co-operative) 385
Anthony Nicholas Linden (Conservative) 829
Gary Arthur Norman (Liberal Democrats) 198
Elizabeth Rosemary O'Keeffe (Liberal Democrats) 235
Joanne Lisa Stewart (Conservative) 835
Clive Taylor (Labour and Co-operative) 412
Lib Dems take two seats on THATCHAM NORTH EAST (two councillor ward)
Jason Paul Collis (Conservative) 706
Jeremy Richard Cottam (Liberal Democrats) 1054
Robert William Denton-Powell (Conservative) 622
Lee Raymond James Dillon (Liberal Democrats) 1088
Neale Thomas Hall (Labour) 167
Teresa Anne McDowell (Labour) 156
Historic moment for The Green Party as they gain their first ever seat on West Berkshire Council!
The results for Ridgeway ward are as follows:
Charlotte Therese Blackman (Labour) 33
Virginia Anne Von Celsing (Conservative) 458
Carolyne Lindsey Culver (Green Party) 917
Michael Phillip Bernard Palmer (UKIP) 73
Conservative take all three seats in Hungerford and Kintbury
Dennis Charles Benneyworth (Conservative) 1772
Ron Blindell (Labour) 153
Rob Chicken (Liberal Democrats) 1359
James William John Cole (Conservative) 1669
Tim Davis (Green Party) 763
Denise Anne Gaines (Liberal Democrats) 1446
Paul Pugh (Labour) 154
Claire Michelle Rowles (Conservative) 1605
Matt Wilson (Labour) 146
Shaun Henry Wood (Liberal Democrats) 1085
Lib Dem Alan Macro keeps his seat in Theale.
Alan Michael Macro (Liberal Democrats) 601
Chris Ryder (Labour) 85
Alex Traves (Conservative) 203
All three seats in Newbury Greenham go to the Lib Dems
Malik Kamail Pasha Azam (UKIP) 245
Phil Barnett (Liberal Democrats) 1337
Christine Anne Copeland (Labour) 273
Billy Drummond (Liberal Democrats) 1375
Miles William Evans (Conservative) 751
Sarah Anouska Greenall (Conservative) 752
Mark Anthony Jones (Conservative) 694
Matthew Thomas James Lowe (Green Party) 567
Erik Pattenden (Liberal Democrats) 1151
Gary Puffett (Labour Party) 263
Michael John Wakelyn (Labour) 183
All three seats in Tilehurst and Purley go to the Conseravtives.
Elizabeth Rowena Jane Bell (Labour) 666
Steve Bown (Liberal Democrats) 547
Richard John Jones (Conservative) 1,419
Stuart Graham Silvester Lythgoe (Labour) 471
Thomas Joseph Marino (Conservative) 1,313
Ben Rayner (Labour) 650
Andrew Brian Williamson (Conservative) 1,375
Steve Young (Green Party) 701
Thatcham West goes to the Lib Dems with Jeff Brooks and Keith Woodams reclaiming the seats they lost in 2015. Jeff Brooks holds on to the seat he took in the by-election last year.
Sarah Anne Berrington (Labour) 109
Jeff Brooks (Liberal Democrats) 885
Ellen Mary Crumly (Conservative) 472
Gary Edward Johnson (UKIP), 256
Jane Elisabeth Livermore (Green Party), 255
Helen Elizabeth Picken (Conservative) 419
Susan Elizabeth Turauskis (Labour) 82
Keith William Woodhams (Liberal Democrats) 809
Both seats on Tilehurst South and Holybrook are taken by the Conservatives. Peter Argyle and Richard Somner elected.
Peter Argyle (Conservative) 865
Charles Spalding Croal (Labour) 395
Emma Claire Gillespie (Labour) 367
Sarah Lowes (Liberal Democrats) 266
Vaughan Miller (Liberal Democrats) 206
Richard James Somner (Conservative) 907
Bradfield and Pangbourne go to the Conservatives, Ross Mackinnon and Gareth Hurley are elected. Bradfield results were Con 543, Lib Dem 237 and Labour 92.
Pangbourne results were Con 593, Lib Dem 350 and Labour 205.
Seven out of seven for the Tories ... 17 wards and 36 councillors to go.
As things stand after five seats:— Dan Cooper (@danc_nwn) May 3, 2019
Conservatives have 3,065 votes (57.42%)
Lib Dems have 1,538 votes (28.81%)
Labour have 415 votes (7.77%)
Green Party have 320 votes (5.99%)@WestBerkshire @NewburyToday #LocalElections2019
Thatcham Colthrop and Crookham is taken by the Conservatives. Steve Ardagh-Walter elected by 71 votes - 480 to 409.
The ward was Thatcham south and Crookham and was represented by two Conservative councillors. It's now changed name and has one councillor now.
When asked how he felt Mr Ardagh-Walter said: "Relief, happy, looking forward to it and I genuinely am. Lots to do but remians to be seen who we will be working with."
Bucklebury stays blue. Graham Pask is re-elected
Aldermaston, Basildon and Downlands stay Conservative. Dominic Boeck, Alan Law and Clive Hooker re-elected.
Mr Law said: "I would like to thank the voters of Basildon who stood by me, much appreciated."
Turnout in this district was 36% - just 1% lower than our reporter John predicted. And way off what the rest of us had said.
The count is underway. Keep an eye on this live blog and we will bring you the results, ward by ward, as they come in.
Hearing that there are a few Brexit-themed spoiled ballots, including 'deliver Brexit' and 'no Brexit, no vote' @NewburyToday— John Herring (@johnh_nwn) May 3, 2019
Newbury MP Richard Benyon has arrived at the Racecourse and is mingling with the Conservative candidates as they await the beginning of the count.
Verification of the votes has now ended and the count is set to begin in half an hour. Turnout figures to be announced shortly.
An interesting fact to pass the time while we wait for the count to begin: around 50% of councils nationwide have waited until this morning to begin the count. West Berkshire is one of them.
@WestBerksTories agent @dominicboeck tells me "We knew that in 2015 we were at a high watermark. We would expect not to come in with the same number of votes or seats. that we started with." More to come on @NewburyToday live blog— John Herring (@johnh_nwn) May 3, 2019
He adds that there hasn't quite been apathy but "people are affected by this uncertainty of the national position. We have voters telling us that, and we have said it's all about local issues.
"Some people have responded to that positively, others have been determined not to bother or get engaged.
"It's very early. Turn out has been poor everywhere. Our target is to take as many seats as we can. We have fought a really hard campaign here. We want to get everybody across the line."
Responding to the national picture, which has seen the Conservatives lose 15 councils and more than 400 seats, Mr Boeck said: "It's disappointing to see them go down, but some such as Swindon have increased their majority, and there are plenty in this part of the country that are holding their own with reduced majorities. It's not all negative."
In case you're wondering, The Conservatives increased their majority by one.
Robert Chapman, Labour’s candidate in the Newbury Speen ward, just popped by our media desk to say hi. He says he has always been confident. “We can only hope; we can only hope,” he adds.
The Speen ward is expected to be a tight contest.
We're nowhere near finding out was the turnout is for @WestBerkshire #LocalElections2019. Four years ago it was 71%, but a general election was held on the same day. This time it's expected to be lower, much lower. @NewburyToday— John Herring (@johnh_nwn) May 3, 2019
Adds "I have had three doors slammed in my face this time, which is less than in 2015. - Cautious optimism indeed.— John Herring (@johnh_nwn) May 3, 2019
Mr Marsh adds: "The campaign went well. It's not all about Brexit. The national media are all saying this is some opinion poll on Brexit. A lot of people on the doorstep didn't mention it. I suspect there was a backdrop and people were angry about it but it was very good to see in Wash Common that people were really concerned about local issues, like Sandleford and road safety and local schools."
Labour candidate Suzie Ferguson says that the party is hopeful of picking up seats in the east of the district.
"We really hope so but we're really not sure. We can really proud of what we have done but it's up to the people to make their choice and we won't know that until we see the numbers."
Lib Dem councillor Jeff Brooks tells our reporter John Herring that his party is expecting a good day. "The party has done extremely well nationally and we have had a very good reception on the doorsteps, so there's no reason that we shouldn't have a good day today."
From last night...
Labour retained control of Reading Borough Council last night. Labour still have 30 councillors, the Conservatives 10 (down two), the Greens four (one gain) and the Liberal Democrats two (one gain).
In the Tilehurst ward, Liberal Democrat Ricky Duveen won comfortably from the Tories. The Greens won a seat from Labour in Redlands and Labour won from the Conservatives in Caversham.
It was a great night for the Lib Dems and a bad result for the Conservatives in Wokingham. The Tories retain control of the council but with a much-reduced majority.
The Conservatives now have 31 councillors (down 10), the Lib Dems 16 (eight gains), Labour four (one gain) and there are three independents (one gain).
High-profile Tory casualties leader Julian McGhee-Sumner, long-standing Shinfield South member Anthony Pollock and Hillside's Norman Jorgensen.
The Conservatives lost control of South Oxfordshire District Council, with big gains for the Liberal Democrats. The council is now in no overall control.
The Lib Dems won 12 seats (11 gains), the Conservatives 10 (down 23), the Greens five (five gains), there are three independents (three gains), Labour won three (two gains) and there are three Residents’ Association councillors (two gains).
In Bracknell, the Conservatives retained control with a reduced majority.
The Tories now have 38 councillors (down three), Labour have three (two gains) and there is one Liberal Democrat (one gain).