Monday, 30 April 2012

What will happen in your county

Thursday is voting day throughout Wales to choose councillors. Well, everywhere but Ynys Mon, they've been naughty children and are in detention for another year.

For you dear, readers a chart with my predictions. But of course your votes can change my forecasts. 

As you will see from the table some interesting contests, but a great deal of predictability.

The big question of the night will be whether Labour make sufficient gains to take the pressure of Ed Miliband.
My guess is that the polls will be reflected on the night and Ed will be crowing over a major victory.

The other interest is whether the election of Leanne Wood has helped Plaid Cymru gain seats especially in the Labour's heartland. Plaid have been playing down a Leanne Wood effect, "its too early" is their view. Hmmm.

The other question that Thursday night and Friday morning will determine is  whether Labour  will make sufficient gains to control the Welsh Local Government Association. The polls now would suggest that they will.

Incidentally filming the rest of the week so no blog. A relief to many I'm sure.

Since posting this blog YouGov have published a poll that shows:
48% Labour (21% up on 2008)
17% Conservatives (1% up on 2008)
14% Plaid Cymru ( 3% down on 2008)
7% Liberal Democrats (6% down on 2008)
15% Independents (13% down on 2008)
It clearly shows Labour doing very much better than last time but will it change the synopsis below? Not greatly. 
What was prepared assumed a Labour lead in the polls and a slump in support for the Liberal Democrats. 
It is dangerous to take a poll and apply it directly to a given local area. Local campaigning can make a difference. Be assured Liberal Democrat councillors are local campaigners par excellent and their work will mitigate some of the poll's predictions. 

So no change to my predictions below.

Current Position
Blaenau Gwent
Ind - 24
Lab - 16
Other - 2
Labour will be hope to win control after gaining both the Parliamentary and Assembly seat from independents. There was a spasm in the constituency over the all women short list which saw many Labour members leave the party, the loss of seats in Parliament and the Assembly. In 2008  the disaffected also won control of the council. Now the voters will likely return to  the fold and Labour will be back in charge.
Lab - 27
Ind - 11
Con - 6
Lib Dem - 6
Democratic Independent - 3
Plaid - 1
Labour lost control in 2008 but won it back after a few by-elections. They’ll likely keep control after Thursday, mainly at Lib Dems expense.
Plaid - 32
Lab - 29
Ind - 5
Islwyn First - 3
Minority Independent - 3
Always a fight between Plaid and Labour here. Plaid Cymru are currently in control with the help of independents, even if Plaid don’t lose a seat Labour are likely to win seats from independents to gain control. There is little sign of a Leanne Wood bounce in the county. 
Lib Dem/Plaid
Lib Dem - 34
Lab - 14
Con - 16
Plaid - 6
Ind - 5
Labour are likely to leap frog from third to first place amongst the parties but are unlikely to have an overall majority. The question is can they do a deal to gain control? Their natural allies would be PC but personality clashes might prevent a deal being done.
Plaid - 32
Ind - 29
Lab - 11
People First - 2
Other - 2
The old coalfield area of the county should see Labour gain some more seats. Plaid would hope to gain some seats from the independents especially in the west of the county where they’re well organised. No change to the county’s control is what I predict. Labour will continue to prop the independents to keep control away from Plaid
Ind/Lib Dem/Lab
Plaid - 20
Ind - 11
Lib Dem - 9
Lab - 1
Non-party Independent - 1
Plaid again will seek overall control but will have a struggle as many parts of the county are wedded to independents. Plaid’s hope rests on the national polls being reflected here and the Lib Dems losing seats, The other two parties scarcely get a look in and this election will not change that.
Con - 18
Ind - 15
Plaid - 14
Lab - 7
Lib Dem - 5
The council will remain hung. Although the Conservatives  will likely win some seats mainly from independents there won’t be any substantial movement to any party here.
Con - 18
Ind - 10
Ind First - 3
Ind (Welsh Liberal Democrat) - 1
Lab - 7
Plaid - 8
Another county that will remain much the same. There will be changes but based on local personalities rather than party.
Con/Ind/Lib Dem
Ind - 24
Lab - 21
Lib Dem - 13
Con - 9
Plaid - 1
Unaffiliated - 2
Labour will want to regain control of this council and with the current way the party is riding in the polls is likely so to do if Lib Dems have the melt down the polls are predicting.
Plaid - 39
Ind - 14
Llais Gwynedd - 10
Lib Dem - 4
Individual member - 2
Lab - 4
Gwynedd will remain the jewel in Plaid Cymru’s local government crown. The threat from Llais Gwynedd has been seen off so an overall majority is assured.
Merthyr Tydfil
Ind -13
Lab - 10
Lib Dem - 4
Merthyr Independents - 3
Labour lost control last time but on paper should win control back this time. But Merthyr has over the years been very idiosyncratic and who knows might defy prediction this time. But unlikely.
Con - 26
Lab - 7
PC/Ind - 6
Lib Dem - 4
Conservatives will keep the county, the best the other parties can hope for is to dent the majority.
Neath Port Talbot
Lab - 39
Plaid - 11
Ind - 6
Lib Dem - 3
Social Democrat - 3
NPT Independent Party - 2
Last time this was one of the two counties that Labour held overall control of and will remain the same Labour fiefdom this time. Maybe PC might make some gains but unlikely to change the natural order of things in the county.
Conservative/Lib Dem
Lab - 20
Con - 17
Lib Dem - 9
Ind - 2
The coalition between the Conservatives and Lib Democrats will be out and Labour will take over control once more.
Ind - 39
Con - 5
Lab - 4
Plaid - 5
Lib Dem - 1
Independent rule. The other four parties have begun to introduce party politics to the county but they will not upset the natural state of affairs here.
Powys Independent Alliance - 31
The Shires Independent Group -13
Lib Dem - 13
Con - 10
Lab - 5
Plaid - 1
It is a question of which independent group will run the county. 
Rhondda Cynon Taf
Lab - 48
Plaid - 18
Ind - 5
Lib Dem - 3
Con - 1
The question is whether there will be any Leanne Wood bounce in this her home county. The omens are not good. Labour should remain firmly in control.
Swansea Administration
Swansea Administration - 35
Lab - 25
Non Aligned - 1
Communities of Swansea - 3
Labour start with the advantage of being the largest party and are likely to gain ground. The chances are that they’ll do enough to gain control of the county.
Labour minority controlled
Lab - 21
Ind - 15
Con - 5
Plaid - 2
Lib Dem - 1
Last time the voters backed any party as long as it wasn’t Labour. This time they’ll return to Labour and Labour control. 
Vale of Glamorgan
Con - 25
Lab - 12
Plaid - 6
Ind - 4
Labour will make gains whether or not they’ll gain sufficient to get overall control is the question. The PM has visited. My feel is that it will take more than a Prime Ministerial visit to stop Labour gaining here.
All-party coalition
Lib Dem - 11
Lab -12
Democrat Independents - 7
Wrexham Independents - 8
Con - 5
Ind - 4
Plaid - 3
Non Aligned - 1
The Liberal Democrats are currently in the driving seat with the help of others. Labour as the largest party will hope to make sufficient gains to wrestle control back. It will be close. 


  1. Gareth, Do you think Plaid will lose all their seats in Cardiff as their will be a massive swing to Labour?

  2. Interesting post.
    I've always said that this election will be a success for Labour if it can get Cardiff more than any other council. And I genuinely thought they would; however it seems that from the ground Labour will not make it- and I was about to say this when I read the first lines of your blog. However it seems your prediction ties in well with this. If this is correct, deep down I think Labour will be disappointed.

    What I'd also say about this campaign is that its bought home to me that reform must be made of the system - have larger wards with greater competition. In the county I live I've not seen a single poster out on the side of a road. This surely is bad for democracy?

    I would also welcome some form of competition to allow each county to elect its own mayor.... i.e to be leader of the council.

  3. I am a Labour insider and i know were confident in Riverside, Grangetown , Butetown, Adamsdown, Splott, Fairwater, We will wim

    a majority is within our grasp, we have the momentum, people will come out to vote for us in there droves, we will turn over seats that Plaid and Lib Dems have huge majorities, even in Plasnewydd its close and Cathays. We could well gain 30 seats.

  4. The real question in Cardiff is whether labour will lose (one o) their seats in Ely to Plaid?

  5. Counting posters is always a risky business, but in Riverside Id say the posters are 4:1 to Plaid (10:1 in some places). In Fairwater its more even 2:1 to Plaid.

  6. It will be a very sad day if the idiots that live in our country vote Labour again just because there is an irrelevant Tory party in Westminster.

    Wales needs to declare war on Labour if we want to prosper.

  7. I think Plaid will hold on to many of it's Cardiff seats but I think Labour would find it difficult to do a deal with them due to some of Plaid's members being ex-Labour. Labour is a very unforgiving party.

  8. How much does a YouGov opinion poll cost to undertake?

  9. I doubt it, Plaid have lost control especially in Riverside and Fairwater, running strange campaigns, watch this space

  10. Now the polls out, Gareth, would you change any of your predictions?

    Cardiff, Swansea going Red?

  11. Posters and placards motivate party supporters and are good for reminding people there's an election on. However they certainly don't swing elections - anyone with a few years' campaigning experience can tell you that.

    As a Labour 'insider' I can say the campaign in the Tory-controlled Vale of Glamorgan is going extremely well. Even in rural strongholds like Cowbridge, the sitting Tory councillors are fighting for their political lives due to a combination of poor national poll ratings and unpopular decisions by the local council. Could be very interesting on the night!

  12. The polls are right and reinforced from on the ground polling, Labour will do extremely well on Thursday and could end up with control of at least 10 Councils.

    All it proves is that nothing has fundamentally changed in Wales is 13 years. 'Welsh democracy' remains a sham because no other party than Labour can succeed.

  13. Not so sure of Labour in Carmarthenshire going into with independants in future, my money is on no overall control

  14. not often you see such a detailed look into the locals. Fantastic analysys. I'm in the Caerleon ward. I think the Tory/Lib dem have done a good job with the authority as a whole and tht may have had my vote however their councillors have been rubbish with regards to the ward so i am probably going labour. I am a plaid voter by inclination but hey this is local politics and time to take off blinkers. All this rubbish about sending messages - i am voting Lab here because of the work of a few individuals - its not a message to Cameron or backing for Carwyn Jones or Milliband - i still see the labour party in Wales as self serving with no vision