Local authority elections took place in most parts of England on 2 May. We contested 30 seats. In general our votes increased [see table below]. By comparison, we received more than double the average Socialist Alliance vote.

Nonetheless, our votes did not reflect the enthusiastic support we received from thousands of people on the doorsteps. A far better expression of our support is reflected by the increased numbers of papers sold during the election. However, the predominant attitude to the elections was a feeling of "what’s the point of voting they’re all the same anyway?" We can only overcome this to a limited extent; many who were supportive of our candidates could not be convinced to go and vote! The national turnout in the election was marginally higher than last year but still only one third of people bothered to vote.

However, where we have candidates who have led local campaigns, and are known as being ‘different’ to mainstream politicians, we received extremely good votes. In Lewisham, the boundaries of Ian Page and Sam Dias’s ward had been altered, bringing 2,000 extra voters into our area. New Labour ran an extremely dirty campaign. Nonetheless, Ian was re-elected with 1065 votes (300 more than his previous highest vote). Sam received 922 votes (almost double the vote on which she was elected) but was unfortunately just 50 votes short of holding her seat. However, a local education campaign, which stood on a slate with us, was elected. On the morning of the election Sam collected £40 FF from local shopkeepers supporting our candidates. In Coventry, Dave Nellist held his seat in Coventry St Michaels, with a majority of 400 votes. We got an average of 12% of the vote in the seven other Coventry seats we contested. Pete Glover, in Bootle, Merseyside, received 822 votes (30%).

3 May 2002

 

Seat

Candidate

Vote

Percentage

Newcastle Byker

Bill Hopwood

303

20%

Hull Southcoates

Keith Ellis

59

5.9%

Doncaster Thorne

Mary Jackson

N/A

 

Rotherham Aston

Paul Marshall

225

8.1%

Sheffield Manor

Alistair Tice

101

4.4%

Huddersfield Newsome

Dylan Murphy

107

 

Wakefield East

Mick Griffiths

252

7.5%

Pontrefact

John Gill

134

4.9%

Leeds Beeston

Dave Jones

261

6.7%

Preston Brookfield

Councillor Paul Malliband

272

19.85%

Merseyside Bootle

Pete Glover

822

32%

Birmingham Northfield

Louise Holdey

252

5%

Coventry

St Michaels

Councillor Dave Nellist *

1417

52.8%

Fosehill

Jim Hensman

213

5.%

Longford

Martin Reynolds

243

8%

Whoberley

Mark Power

450

12%

Westwood

Ella Manley

364

13.2%

Binley/Wilenhall

Becky Tustain

293

8.3%

Henley

Martha Young

381

14.3%

Lower Stoke

Jane Ashwell

397

12.7%

Stevenage Bedwell

Steve Glennon

116

4.7%

Lewisham Telgraph Hill

Councillor Ian Page,*

Councillor Sam Dias

1065

 

922

 

Walthamstow Markhouse

Louise Thompson

Suzanne Muna

Kevin Parslow

177

172

137

7.9%

Hillingdon Pinkwell

Julia Leonard

114

5%

Hackney Cazenove

Chris Newby

155

6.9%

Southampton

Gavin Marsh

109

4%

Bristol Lockleaze

Roger Thomas

51

1.9%

Bristol Bedminster

Robin Clapp

107

3.7%

Swindon

Jean Walker

   

Gloucester

     

 

* = elected

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