Page last updated at 15:40 GMT, Friday, 2 May 2008 16:40 UK

Local elections: voters react

The Labour Party has suffered its worst local election results in at least 40 years. They have lost control of key councils like Reading. Tory gains include Bury and North Tyneside.

Here Labour supporters who have switched their vote, or decided not to vote at all explain why.

GARRY MCNULTY, 48, RETIRED, SOUTHAMPTON
Gary McNulty
Gary says David Cameron has been successful in changing the Tories

For the first time ever I voted for the Conservatives - for the simple reason of the mistakes made over the 10 pence tax rate.

I've always thought of myself as left leaning - and that governments should look after the working people.

But abolishing the 10 pence tax rate was obviously going to hit poorer people.

My wife works part time and she was set to lose 3 a week. If everyone in the country had faced a 3 a week tax rise, that would have been different - at least we would have been in the same boat. But this move specifically hit people with less money.

I spotted this when the government made the change. I thought they would have corrected it with the latest budget. But it took a Labour rebellion to make a difference.

These people are meant to know how to run the economy but they somehow make a major mistake like this. It just seems incompetent.

David Cameron has also been successful in changing the Tories. I would never have dreamt of voting for the Conservatives before.

The Conservatives have won control of Southampton.

SUZANNE ROBINSON, 52, TRANSPORT PLANNER, BURY
Suzanne Robinson
Suzanne says Labour has to listen more

Well, after years and years of voting Labour I didn't this time. I am so sad at the state of our Labour Party. My parents will be turning in their graves right now.

I earn what I consider to be a good wage - and up until Christmas was able to put money aside for saving. But since Christmas with rising fuel prices and bills there is nothing left. I feel sorry for those worse off than me.

And where is Gordon Brown? You never see him, he doesn't seem to be doing anything about the country's problems. Is he actually doing his job?

This year I had no leaflets from Labour, no knocks on the door. David Cameron has been in this area - where was Brown? My son, who is 18, was voting for the first time - and I didn't even have the enthusiasm to advise him on who to vote for.

To turn things around, Labour really has to start listening to people. To be honest, I think the party should get rid of Brown. Maybe David Miliband would make a better leader.

The Conservatives have won control of Bury.

DRAGAN, 39, QUALITY CONTROLLER, WOLVERHAMPTON
It's disgusting that they made many low paid workers worse off by abolishing the 10 pence tax rate

I have voted Labour all my life but this time I switched to the Lib Dems.

Labour is supposed to be the party of the working public but they don't seem to be supporting the working man any more.

They don't seem to be listening to be people like me. I know many people have lost faith in the government.

For example, on fuel - the price has gone up and up but the government hasn't done anything to reduce the tax to ease the burden on people.

It's disgusting that they made many low paid workers worse off by abolishing the 10 pence tax rate. What was the government thinking?

Another major issue is immigration - which is just out of control. Foreign workers are coming over here and pushing wages down because they can afford to work for less. They are sharing houses and sending their money back home. I can't compete with that.

I wrote to my MP on this issue. I got a typical letter back saying that "we have all" benefited from the immigrant workforce - and that my parents had also benefited.

My MP doesn't know anything about my family. In fact, my father was a refugee from Yugoslavia. I think this just goes to show the sort of arrogant attitude that people in the government have.

Labour has lost control of Wolverhampton.




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HAVE YOUR SAY

THE ELECTION RESULTS
COUNCIL RESULTS
  Councillors Councils
Party +/- Total +/- Total
CON 257 3155 12 65
LAB -334 2365 -9 18
LD 33 1804 1 12
PC 31 205 -1 0
OTH 10 898 0 0
NOC - - -3 64
159 of 159 councils declared.

Find your results

Results in more detail

London Mayoral results
Overall results
Name Party Votes
Johnson CON 1,168,738
Livingstone LAB 1,028,966
Paddick LD 878,097
Berry GRN 409,101

Find your results

Results in more detail

London Assembly Results
Overall results
Party Constit' Top-up Total seats
CON 8 3 11
LAB 6 2 8
LD 0 3 3
GRN 0 2 2
BNP 0 1 1

Find your results

Results in more detail


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