Jonathan Carr-West, Chief Executive, LGIU said:
“The big story everyone is focusing on is the shift from Labour to the Conservatives. It’s certainly a bad set of local results for Labour but when we look in detail, we can see that underneath this big picture some more complex local stories are bubbling away.
Both Labour and the Liberal Democrats, while losing seats nationally, have made gains, some of them substantial, in many areas, as have Independents. The Greens have seen a huge surge across the country. Local dynamics remain important.
That’s also clear in the metro mayor results. While there was something for both Labour and the Conservatives to celebrate here, in truth these results don’t have much to do with national politics. They’re about local leadership, local identity, civic pride and representation.
Governments outside of Westminster have to deliver every day. Westminster politicians love to talk about how they will get on and deliver, but it is councils and mayors that actually do that.
If we want places to be levelled up and to stay levelled up, we need to empower them through genuine devolution not through sporadic government patronage. The lesson that both the government and opposition should take from these elections is that place matters and that empowering people and places brings electoral reward.
The shift of power away from Westminster is already happening, our politics has to catch up somehow.”