Why London's local elections could send major shockwaves to Westminster

The Conservatives are bracing themselves for the loss of flagship councils when millions of Londoners go to the polls on Thursday.

Labour is hoping to tighten its grip on the capital by capturing Tory strongholds like Barnet, Wandsworth and Westminster - writes itv.com

A recent YouGov opinion poll for Queen Mary University put Labour 22 points ahead of the Conservatives in London.

Former Home Secretary, Amber Rudd

The fallout from Amber Rudd's resignation as Home Secretary after the government's botched treatment of the Windrush generation could also boost Labour's chances.


Barnet is at the top of Labour’s target list. The Tories recently lost control after a councillor quit the party, meaning Barnet is currently a hung council.

But Labour ambitions in the north London borough might be upset by the row over anti-semitism in the party. Barnet has a large Jewish population.


Tory Wandsworth, once described as Margaret Thatcher’s favourite council, is also at the centre of a closely fought contest.

Labour hopes in the south London borough were boosted when Marsha de Cordova captured the Wandsworth Parliamentary seat of Battersea in last year’s general election.

London is increasingly seen as a Labour city. The party controls 20 of the 32 London boroughs. A majority of Londoners also voted in favour of staying in the EU.

Conservative election strategists are trying to make it a ‘Bins not Brexit’ election by focussing on local concerns like bin collections, pot holes and council tax.

But voters could be swayed by national issues like Brexit, Labour’s anti-semitism crisis, and Windrush.

The chronic shortage of affordable housing in London is another priority for many voters.


Wandsworth and Westminster would be trophy wins for Labour but the holy grail is the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.

The Conservatives hold more than two thirds of the seats on ‘K&C’ but the authority faced widespread criticism for its handling of the Grenfell Tower disaster.

Labour activists have been campaigning hard in K&C but party officials acknowledge the strength of the Tory vote in some wards makes winning the council a long shot.

Other boroughs to watch include Kingston, where the Lib Dems are challenging the Conservatives for control and neighbouring Sutton where the Tories hope to oust the Lib Dems.

Read more news of London on our site.

localelections.London shockwavestoWestminster
If you notice an error, highlight the text you want and press Ctrl + Enter to report it to the editor
1 view in november
I recommend
No recommendations yet


Post your comment to communicate and discuss this article.

Police have launched a manhunt after religious idols and Diwali donations were stolen from two north London temples in early morning raids. The Met said the early morning burglaries were being treated as linked and released a CCTV image of a hooded suspect on Saturday. Officers also urged faith leaders to be vigilant against future incidents. The first happened at the Shree Swaminarayan Temple in Willesden Lane, Brent, on November 9. While the priests were...
Rail commuters have been told not to attempt to travel into London Waterloo after engineering works overran. South Western Railway (SWR) passengers using the route into London Waterloo from Surbiton were warned not to travel on Monday morning. Disruption is expected to last for the entire day and the Network Rail engineering works will not be finished until 8.39am at the earliest.  The rail operator said Woking, Surbiton, Raynes Park and Earlsfield station...
Some 82 people have been arrested after hundreds of protesters gathered in central London in attempts to block five bridges on Saturday, as they demanded the Government take greater action on climate change. The group Extinction Rebellion encouraged people to perform a sit-in across Southwark, Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster and Lambeth bridges on following a co-ordinated week of action around the UK. Following their closures, all bridges have now reope...
Almost one million crimes of fly-tipping were reported by councils across England during 2017-18, the first fall in five years. Councils recorded 997,553 incidents of illegal dumping, an average of more than 2,700 a day. It was a slight decrease on the 1,011,000 in 2016-17 and is the first time the figure has dropped since 2013. The government said two-thirds of fly-tipping involved household waste. It did not reveal the total cost to taxpayers of clearing...
Children living in London boroughs with high diesel pollution suffer from stunted lung capacity, putting them at risk of early death, a study has said. Pupils living in areas that failed to meet EU nitrogen dioxide limits were at increased risk of lung disease, researchers found. The research studied 2,000 London school children over five years. "We are raising a generation of children reaching adulthood with stunted lungs," researchers said. Academics fro...
A private school teacher has been left partially blind after another woman smashed a glass in her face during a night out.  Lisa Bertsch, 30, was at the Be At One bar in Richmond when she was hit in her right eye. The tumbler shattered and left Ms Bertsch, who lives with her boyfriend in Kingston, needing emergency surgery. She said the attack happened when she tried to stop the assailant pouring a cocktail over her friend’s belongings. Ms Bertsch added th...
Discarded syringes have been left in play areas and car parks as a BBC investigation found councils were being called 50 times a day to remove them. Figures obtained by the BBC showed councils handled 18,496 cases in 2017-18, a rise of 7% in two years. A volunteer pricked by a discarded needle has told how he faces a wait for HIV and hepatitis test results. The Department for Communities and Local Government said it was "committed to doing more to reduce d...
The German Zeppelin bombing campaign of London during WWI has been brought to the fore again days before the centenary of the war in a film made by schoolchildren. The first ever example of strategic bombing in history - a tactic used in total war with the goal of defeating the enemy by destroying their morale or economy - was during the First World War Emperor Kaiser Wilhelm II initially banned attacks on the capital because of his close connection to the...
London’s busiest train station has recruited a hawk to scare off pigeons following a spate of complaints from angry passengers. Aria, a five-year-old harris hawk, has begun patrolling Waterloostation in a bid to stop people having to “fight" off pigeons while eating. There are 27 food and drink retailers at the Network Rail-managed station, and many customers have complained about pigeons pecking at food and leaving a mess. The birds have been pictured sit...