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Last Updated: Sunday, 7 May 2006, 07:18 GMT 08:18 UK
Yorkshire and Lincolnshire: Going against the grain
Nicola Addyman
Nicola Addyman
BBC Politics Show
Yorkshire and Lincolnshire

Richard Caborn
Richard Caborn: Labour meltdown didn't happen

Yorkshire bucks the national trend as Labour vote holds up.

In the days leading up to Thursday's local election polls, Labour councillors, MPs and party workers in West and South Yorkshire were looking decidedly glum.

Though none would openly say so, it's safe to assume that they were expecting substantial losses - particularly in the heartland cities of Sheffield and Hull.

So in the early hours of Friday morning, Sheffield Central MP and government minister Richard Caborn could barely contain his delight that his party were still in charge of the flagship authority in his home town:

"In Barnsley, Doncaster and Rotherham we've done well and we've still got our majority in Sheffield.

"We were told we were going to have meltdown. It hasn't happened."

In fact, there was no change for Labour in Sheffield.

Carl Minns
Carl Minns: Labour still have the whip hand

The Liberal Democrats did become the largest party in Hull by just one seat but their leader on the local council, Carl Minns, didn't seem overly confident that his party would be taking charge: "We needed four more seats to form an administration.

"There are a number of Independents in Hull who always vote with Labour so at the moment ... (Labour) still have the whip hand."

In Harrogate and Bradford, it was a bad day for the Conservatives as their Friday morning counts eventually revealed that they were no longer the biggest parties in both authorities.

In Harrogate, the Liberal Democrats made gains to take the council to No Overall Control.

In Bradford, Labour again showed the North's tendency to go against the grain when the party gained seats to become the biggest party.

However, it could take weeks to sort out who will eventually take charge.

Margaret Eaton
Margaret Eaton: Disappointed not to have made further gains

The incumbent Tory leader Margaret Eaton said: "I'm very disappointed that we haven't made further gains. I would much prefer to be the largest party."

However it seems very likely that she will not relinquish control of the council without a fight.

The picture for the far right British National Party ended up being a mixed one.

The BNP made two gains in Kirklees and scored its first ever seat on Leeds council, as well as picking up a new Bradford seat in Queensbury.

But it also lost two of its Bradford seats and one in Calderdale.

The Greens were delighted with their gain in Sheffield at the expense of the Liberal Democrats.

A single issue group opposing hospital cuts in Huddersfield also gained a seat on Kirklees council.

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Yorkshire and Lincolnshire
11 Sep 05 |  Politics Show


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