The Conservative Party has suffered major losses in London after the results of the local election, which saw the Labour Party take control of three major councils and boroughs — Westminster, Wandsworth and Barnet.
The Westminster city council since its creation in 1964 has always been a Conservative stronghold, but for the first time in history Labour has won a majority of seats overnight.
Wandsworth and Barnet were two major losses to Boris Johnson's Conservative Party, with Wandsworth being Margaret Thatcher's favourite council. After 44 years, it has now been handed to the Labour Party, with progressives cheering at the prospect of their “first black deputy leader for Wandsworth.”
Barnet is another council that the conservatives have lost for the first time.
London is essentially a country of its own, so it doesn't surprise me that it's isolated from the rest of England in terms of voting intentions and ideological backing.— Lewis Brackpool (@Lewis_Brackpool) May 6, 2022
Ravi Govindia, the now-outgoing Wandsworth councillor, says Neil Parish's porn scandal played part in the defeat.
Govindia said, “Inevitably other events have clouded the judgement of people in Wandsworth. We have done exactly what the residents of Wandsworth wanted, and to find that counts for nothing are a sad reflection of the importance of local government not being recognised.”
More London boroughs are still to have their council results announced, including Bromley, Greenwich, Hackney, Haringey, Harrow, Islington, Kingston-upon-Thames, Lambeth, Lewisham and Newham.
Reacting to the news of Westminster turning red, conservative commentator and GB News presenter Calvin Robinson said this is “Not a great day for Tories in London. Sad news for Barnet, Westminster and Wandsworth. Westminster is especially worrying. Conservatives have done a great job of preserving the standards of the borough. It won’t take Labour long to undermine years of conservation.”
Robinson, in a later tweet said that Westminster would likely lose height restrictions on buildings, destroying the skyline, and cautioned that the storied culture of the area could be lost.
Not a great day for Tories in London.— Calvin (@calvinrobinson) May 6, 2022
Sad news for Barnet, Westminster and Wandsworth.
Westminster is especially worrying. Conservatives have done a great job of preserving the standards of the borough. It won’t take Labour long to undermine years of conservation. pic.twitter.com/zNb8FD1AY3
Commentator and writer Dominique Samuels lamented that London would only get worse under Labour, but noted Conservatives had only themselves to blame for the defeat.
London is only going to get worse under Labour, but the Conservatives only have themselves to blame.— Dominique Samuels (@DominiqueTaegon) May 6, 2022
Keir Starmer, the leader of the Labour Party, celebrated the win in Barnet.
Incredible to be with the winning Labour team in Barnet to celebrate this historic local election result.— Keir Starmer (@Keir_Starmer) May 6, 2022
Change starts today 🌹 pic.twitter.com/vMfsfXvvE6
Despite the success in the results, Starmer's victory message comes as he is now under investigation over an alleged lockdown breach.