COUNCIL ELECTIONS: Newport turns red as Labour takes control

First published in Election news

 A NAIL-BITING third count brought the council elections to a close in Newport this afternoon.

 Former Deputy leader, Ed Townsend of the Liberal Democrats survived by a single vote to become the party's sole remaining representative on Newport City Council.

 The St Juilans recount secured a seat for Rhys Hutchings,  better known as part of GLC.

 Before this dramatic finish, it was  a night of celebration for Labour in Newport as they reclaimed the city from the Tory-Lib Dem coalition.

 Supporters whooped and cheered as seats across the city turned from blue and yellow to red.

 Former Conservative strongholds, such as Rogerstone and Stow Hill, were claimed by Labour, along with the former Lib Dem-led ward of Beechwood, which saw several cabinet members lose their seats.

 Among them were Tories Peter Davies and William Routley, and Liberal Democrats David Hando and Mike Hamilton. 

 Lib Dem leader Ed Towns-end only found out his fate late yesterday afternoon after three recounts were held for the St Julians ward amid talk there was only one vote between two candidates.

 He scrapped to victory by just one vote to retain his seat as the only Lib Dem councillor after Labour candidates Goldie Lookin Chain rapper Rhys Hutchings and Emma Garland stormed to victory and ousted Carmel Townsend and Gill Ford.

 Cllr Hutchings joked he hadn't worked as hard since completing his Duke of Edinburgh award when he was 15.

 But, on a serious note, he added his aim was to give something back to Newport and get young people interested in politics. 

 When asked what his GLC bandmates thought of him standing for election, he said they were "coming round to the idea of politics" and may all decide to stand at the next election.

 Labour leader Bob Bright was "too tired" to speak to the Argus on the night and went home before the results of last few wards were declared.

 Yesterday, a refreshed Cllr Bright told the Argus he was "unavailable" for comment at the St Julians recount.

 Outgoing council leader  Matthew Evans said he was "disappointed" the Conser-vatives had lost seven seats, but vowed to continue to work for a better Newport.

 He said: "The odds were heavily stacked against us. 

 "Clearly we are disappointed, but I don't have any regrets. We have got to be positive about the future. 

 "We have had some young, enthusiastic candidates standing for the first time and they will be back to fight another day."

 The Allt-yr-yn councillor said his administration had left a lasting legacy in Newport, citing the £21 million road improvement scheme Project 21 as just one of its successes.

 But he said the number-one priority now must be the £100 million Friars Walk development set to transform John Frost Square.

 He said: "We (the Conservatives) will do anything to assist to ensure this development progresses."

 The current council make up is 35 to Labour, ten to Conservatives and two independents. 

 Three seats in the St Julians ward, currently held by Lib Dems, will be declared later today. 

 The turnout was 33.89 per cent.

Comments (22)

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11:53pm Fri 4 May 12

Dee-Gee says...

To all candidates, no matter what colour your rosette, please work *together* for a better Newport. Please, no name calling, no bitterness and recriminations in defeat, nor smugness and spite in victory.

Newport deserves *adults* in charge. Please ensure we get them.
To all candidates, no matter what colour your rosette, please work *together* for a better Newport. Please, no name calling, no bitterness and recriminations in defeat, nor smugness and spite in victory. Newport deserves *adults* in charge. Please ensure we get them. Dee-Gee
  • Score: 0

5:48am Sat 5 May 12

james.dyer7@ntlworld.com says...

Bit like the old days. Lets see if they can stick to their promises about improvements and jobs. Pleased that at last some younger people are there but still a few of the old codgers need to go and a few with their 'big-headed' attitude. Like Hutchings style.
Bit like the old days. Lets see if they can stick to their promises about improvements and jobs. Pleased that at last some younger people are there but still a few of the old codgers need to go and a few with their 'big-headed' attitude. Like Hutchings style. james.dyer7@ntlworld.com
  • Score: 0

8:22am Sat 5 May 12

Málpasboy says...

Let's not forget that it was successive Labour councils that made Newport the mess that it is.
Well done Labour but must do better...
Let's not forget that it was successive Labour councils that made Newport the mess that it is. Well done Labour but must do better... Málpasboy
  • Score: 0

9:21pm Sat 5 May 12

chris227 says...

well not sure now who is to blame for the absolute disgrace that Newport has become but labour should admit it did not take four years that the coalition was in charge to make it this bad
well not sure now who is to blame for the absolute disgrace that Newport has become but labour should admit it did not take four years that the coalition was in charge to make it this bad chris227
  • Score: 0

9:49pm Sat 5 May 12

PaulHalliday says...

The conservative / Lib Dem adminstration did many good things in their four years. They saved a fortune by reducing the number of cabinate posts and reducing allowances. Not to mention repairing roads that had been allowed to get to a major state of disrepair.

It's true that the town centre is a mess, but it can't be put down to just 4 years of neglect. Let's not forget the state it was in 4 years ago. With a major recession the city centre could have been in a much worse state.

5 years is a long time. Let's hope labour doesn't try and blame all there mistakes on just an administration that was in charge for 4 years.
The conservative / Lib Dem adminstration did many good things in their four years. They saved a fortune by reducing the number of cabinate posts and reducing allowances. Not to mention repairing roads that had been allowed to get to a major state of disrepair. It's true that the town centre is a mess, but it can't be put down to just 4 years of neglect. Let's not forget the state it was in 4 years ago. With a major recession the city centre could have been in a much worse state. 5 years is a long time. Let's hope labour doesn't try and blame all there mistakes on just an administration that was in charge for 4 years. PaulHalliday
  • Score: 0

11:44pm Sat 5 May 12

james.dyer7@ntlworld.com says...

Paul Halliday - Be assured they will. Watch the first meeting in May for all the crowng by Labour. . Let's see if the new Alway Cllr Mrs Harvey, who moaned about the unseeming behaviour in the chamber, doesn't start herself. I'll be watching.
Paul Halliday - Be assured they will. Watch the first meeting in May for all the crowng by Labour. . Let's see if the new Alway Cllr Mrs Harvey, who moaned about the unseeming behaviour in the chamber, doesn't start herself. I'll be watching. james.dyer7@ntlworld.com
  • Score: 0

11:17am Sun 6 May 12

chris227 says...

not sure why anyone votes for the GLC guy he lives in a up market part of cardiff and all his songs seem to be laughing at the poverty and lack of education in newport
not sure why anyone votes for the GLC guy he lives in a up market part of cardiff and all his songs seem to be laughing at the poverty and lack of education in newport chris227
  • Score: 0

5:40pm Sun 6 May 12

Dai37 says...

Unbelievable, the electorate have voted for the party who cocked the whole thing up in the first place.
I am in business and I can tell you things have never been so bad around here, without businesses generating the jobs and money to spend, then you can kiss goodbye to the town.
Incredible result, but nobody ever lost a fortune by overestimating the intelligence of the electorate, will the last business leaving please turn out the lights.
Unbelievable, the electorate have voted for the party who cocked the whole thing up in the first place. I am in business and I can tell you things have never been so bad around here, without businesses generating the jobs and money to spend, then you can kiss goodbye to the town. Incredible result, but nobody ever lost a fortune by overestimating the intelligence of the electorate, will the last business leaving please turn out the lights. Dai37
  • Score: 0

5:50pm Sun 6 May 12

james.dyer7@ntlworld.com says...

Dai- But Labour have been so critical of the Lib/Cons and I am sure the Town Centre will be booming in trade and no empty shops by Christmas. And no secret meetings about travellers sites and no incinerator. Thats just a few they have promised. Superpower eh
Dai- But Labour have been so critical of the Lib/Cons and I am sure the Town Centre will be booming in trade and no empty shops by Christmas. And no secret meetings about travellers sites and no incinerator. Thats just a few they have promised. Superpower eh james.dyer7@ntlworld.com
  • Score: 0

3:50pm Mon 7 May 12

Cymru Am Beth says...

I agree with Dai37.
The people of Newport have very short memories.
The 'tax and spend' party have been rewarded after 13 years of messing up the Country.
Unfortunately, the benefits culture is embedded in the psyche of most people in Wales.
They do not accept that we cannot spend what we don't have.
If Labour get into power at the next General Election, it will be back to the madness of mass immigration and non-jobs, leaving us in a bigger mess than we are now.
I agree with Dai37. The people of Newport have very short memories. The 'tax and spend' party have been rewarded after 13 years of messing up the Country. Unfortunately, the benefits culture is embedded in the psyche of most people in Wales. They do not accept that we cannot spend what we don't have. If Labour get into power at the next General Election, it will be back to the madness of mass immigration and non-jobs, leaving us in a bigger mess than we are now. Cymru Am Beth
  • Score: 0

3:55pm Tue 8 May 12

ebbwdragon says...

Thats right Beth, it was the Labour government that decided to open passport control to allcomers because the queues were too long, oh no sorry it was the Tories those tough guys on immigration.
As for Non-jobs Beth are you watching whats happening right now in our country?
Thats right Beth, it was the Labour government that decided to open passport control to allcomers because the queues were too long, oh no sorry it was the Tories those tough guys on immigration. As for Non-jobs Beth are you watching whats happening right now in our country? ebbwdragon
  • Score: 0

4:58pm Tue 8 May 12

Dee-Gee says...

No matter what side of the political spectrum you sit, only the uneducated or liars think (or pretend to think) that this is what caused the global financial crisis.

The global financial crisis was caused by banks lending money to anyone Tom, Dick or Harry who asked, securing the debt against assets (like houses) that had grossly exaggerated value. Then they packed these loans all together in a bundle, call them "derivatives" and get their pals at the rating agencies to give them an AAA+ rating. Then they swapped them with other banks, thinking that they were getting good assets in return for their rubbish ones. Unfortunately, they were ALL at it.

When this was exposed for the sham it was, the shock nearly caused every major bank on the planet to fail. We were hours away from having no cash in the cash machines on Monday morning.

So governments all over the world gave TRILLIONS to the banks to stop that from happening. That's why we have massive national debt.

Not because "Labour got us into this mess". That's politics, not economics and they bloody well know it, too.
No matter what side of the political spectrum you sit, only the uneducated or liars think (or pretend to think) that this is what caused the global financial crisis. The global financial crisis was caused by banks lending money to anyone Tom, Dick or Harry who asked, securing the debt against assets (like houses) that had grossly exaggerated value. Then they packed these loans all together in a bundle, call them "derivatives" and get their pals at the rating agencies to give them an AAA+ rating. Then they swapped them with other banks, thinking that they were getting good assets in return for their rubbish ones. Unfortunately, they were ALL at it. When this was exposed for the sham it was, the shock nearly caused every major bank on the planet to fail. We were hours away from having no cash in the cash machines on Monday morning. So governments all over the world gave TRILLIONS to the banks to stop that from happening. That's why we have massive national debt. Not because "Labour got us into this mess". That's politics, not economics and they bloody well know it, too. Dee-Gee
  • Score: 0

8:05pm Tue 8 May 12

ebbwdragon says...

Great post Dee Gee.
Great post Dee Gee. ebbwdragon
  • Score: 0

9:28pm Wed 9 May 12

Dai37 says...

Well who were the suckers borrowing all the money? Tom Dick and Harry that's who. Where is the personal responsibility in all this?
How much borrowed on second mortgages, to fund an affluent lifestyle and to buy yet more property.
How often in conversation in those heady times did you hear about how much their propertys had risen. Now this unsustainable madness has crashed, it is all the bankers fault.
You will find in many of these posts a complete lack of personal responsibility it is always the government/schools /social security/ councils fault.
Litter on the streets! councils fault, not the lazy dirty public. Obesity! health services fault, not the greedy scoffers with no self control.
Unemployment! governments fault. Not the vast numbers of unqualified,uneducat
ed mass of unemployable workers, who believe that life owes them a living, and are unwilling to do any job that does not pay them more than benefits.
Before my computer goes into meltdown with hate mail, I am generalising, however I feel that the only time people are forced to recognise their responsibility is if they appear before a court. Only then do they have to face the reality of their responsibility for their actions.
Well who were the suckers borrowing all the money? Tom Dick and Harry that's who. Where is the personal responsibility in all this? How much borrowed on second mortgages, to fund an affluent lifestyle and to buy yet more property. How often in conversation in those heady times did you hear about how much their propertys had risen. Now this unsustainable madness has crashed, it is all the bankers fault. You will find in many of these posts a complete lack of personal responsibility it is always the government/schools /social security/ councils fault. Litter on the streets! councils fault, not the lazy dirty public. Obesity! health services fault, not the greedy scoffers with no self control. Unemployment! governments fault. Not the vast numbers of unqualified,uneducat ed mass of unemployable workers, who believe that life owes them a living, and are unwilling to do any job that does not pay them more than benefits. Before my computer goes into meltdown with hate mail, I am generalising, however I feel that the only time people are forced to recognise their responsibility is if they appear before a court. Only then do they have to face the reality of their responsibility for their actions. Dai37
  • Score: 0

11:10pm Wed 9 May 12

james.dyer7@ntlworld.com says...

Dai - a lot of venom but what has that got to do with Newport council? Bit OTT don't you think?
Dai - a lot of venom but what has that got to do with Newport council? Bit OTT don't you think? james.dyer7@ntlworld.com
  • Score: 0

11:33pm Wed 9 May 12

Dai37 says...

James you are correct, got a bit carried away by the same old arguments used by the previous poster. Point taken.
James you are correct, got a bit carried away by the same old arguments used by the previous poster. Point taken. Dai37
  • Score: 0

11:39pm Wed 9 May 12

Dai37 says...

One thing to come out of the elections. I doubt that there will be a traveller site in Bettws now. I am sure we can find somewhere in Alltyryn or St Julians maybe.
One thing to come out of the elections. I doubt that there will be a traveller site in Bettws now. I am sure we can find somewhere in Alltyryn or St Julians maybe. Dai37
  • Score: 0

1:51am Thu 10 May 12

james.dyer7@ntlworld.com says...

Dai - Doesn't bother me about the gypo's. Lliswerry or Coedkernew bi thought with Cllr Alan Morris
Dai - Doesn't bother me about the gypo's. Lliswerry or Coedkernew bi thought with Cllr Alan Morris james.dyer7@ntlworld.com
  • Score: 0

9:58pm Thu 10 May 12

CM1 says...

Dee-gee, there is a debt crisis, created in large part by the banks but ably assisted by government (see below), exacerbated by the fact that the last administration decided to embark on a significant spending spree during the boom years. That same administration also relaxed the banking rules, allowing greater unregulated trading, the root cause of the bust.
Dee-gee, there is a debt crisis, created in large part by the banks but ably assisted by government (see below), exacerbated by the fact that the last administration decided to embark on a significant spending spree during the boom years. That same administration also relaxed the banking rules, allowing greater unregulated trading, the root cause of the bust. CM1
  • Score: 0

10:05pm Thu 10 May 12

CM1 says...

....sorry, forgot to add; to claim that anyone who thinks that the last administration did not have a role to play in these events as "uneducated or liars" shows a startling level of arrogance....or, are you all knowing, possessing unquestionable insight on the economy??
....sorry, forgot to add; to claim that anyone who thinks that the last administration did not have a role to play in these events as "uneducated or liars" shows a startling level of arrogance....or, are you all knowing, possessing unquestionable insight on the economy?? CM1
  • Score: 0

12:40am Fri 11 May 12

james.dyer7@ntlworld.com says...

cmi/dee gee - Yes good stuff but whats it got to do with Newport council????
cmi/dee gee - Yes good stuff but whats it got to do with Newport council???? james.dyer7@ntlworld.com
  • Score: 0

9:59am Fri 11 May 12

Dee-Gee says...

It's got absolutely nothing to do with Newport council James, but given that the Labour party were shamelessly encouraging everyone to vote on national issues, it seems reasonable to discuss the major one of our time.

CM1 - I'm sorry if I come across as arrogant, but facts are facts, politically inconvenient or not. The only role the British - or any other - government played in the GFC was failure to regulate the banking sector enough. You don't need unquestionable insight for that - it's maths, not philosophy. Money went from A to B via C, etc.

Good article on it below - alternatively, most newspapers and the BBC have a timeline of the crisis. No matter which one you read, you'll see it starts with the collapse of the US housing market and the banks that were dependent on it, and spreads like wildfire from there.

http://cje.oxfordjou
rnals.org/content/33
/4/563.full
It's got absolutely nothing to do with Newport council James, but given that the Labour party were shamelessly encouraging everyone to vote on national issues, it seems reasonable to discuss the major one of our time. CM1 - I'm sorry if I come across as arrogant, but facts are facts, politically inconvenient or not. The only role the British - or any other - government played in the GFC was failure to regulate the banking sector enough. You don't need unquestionable insight for that - it's maths, not philosophy. Money went from A to B via C, etc. Good article on it below - alternatively, most newspapers and the BBC have a timeline of the crisis. No matter which one you read, you'll see it starts with the collapse of the US housing market and the banks that were dependent on it, and spreads like wildfire from there. http://cje.oxfordjou rnals.org/content/33 /4/563.full Dee-Gee
  • Score: 0

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