Brent election results 2018: Labour win biggest victory in borough's history as Tories lose Brondesbury Park
PUBLISHED: 09:33 04 May 2018 | UPDATED: 10:01 04 May 2018
Labour has won its biggest majority in Brent's history after a night that saw the Conservatives lose half their seats and no Lib Dems elected.
One of the most noteworthy results was in Brondesbury Park, which has fallen into Labour’s hands for the first time in more than a decade.
After a night of intense counting, given the high number of split votes, the newly formed 57-strong Labour group now has only three councillors in opposition.
Reg Colwill, Suresh Kansagra and Michael Maurice (all Con) managed to hold on to Kenton with 5,378 votes in total, with Labour not far behind on 4,052.
Former Conservative leader John Warren, Brondesbury’s longest serving councillor Carol Shaw, and Joel Davidson, were all replaced with fresh Labour blood.
False rumours that Ms Shaw had died this week had circulated in the days leading up to the poll, leading chief exec Carolyn Downs to issue an extraordinary warning to councillors and election agents that they could be breaking the law if they spread misinformation. The Times spoke to Ms Shaw on Tuesday to confirm she was still standing.
Tony Ethapemi (Lab) said: “It’s an honour to serve the people of Brondesbury Park. It’s good to have three Labour councillors after such a long time of Conservative domination.”
Erica Gbajumo (Lab) said they were “very determined to be the best councillors for the area,” while Kieron Gill (Lab), who got the most votes with 1,674 supporters, said that he was “humbled”, adding: “We will take on the duty with the utmost seriousness.”
While every other Labour councillor was a winner, other big losers on the night were the Lib Dems with Dollis Hill’s Alison Hopkins coming fourth with 1,355. The fierce campaigner pledged earlier in the night that “whatever happens” she would “continue to be a pain in the a***”.
Police and council officers are understood to be investigating an allegation of electoral fraud made this week relating to the ward.
Ms Hopkins’s colleague and former Lib Dem council leader Paul Lorber received 1,793 votes to come fourth in Sudbury. Thomas Stephens received 2,015 for Labour with Sadiq Butt and Mary Daly topping that with 2,131 and 2,304 apiece.
Police and council officers are understood to be investigating an allegation of electoral fraud made this week relating to Dollis Hill.
The Green Party made in-roads with Samuel Hopkins coming fourth to Labour in Kensal Green, beating the Liberal Democrats.
Cllr Muhammed Butt, Brent Council leader, said: “This result is just vindication that Labour’s policies, our strategies and our vision is about delivering to everyone.
“People of Brent have spoken and said the failure of the Liberal Democrats is not wanted. The Conservatives just about held on to three councillors and we weren’t too far behind them.
“In the future we’ll make it into Kenton. People of Kenton have realised that Labour is a party that will deliver for its residents.”
Questioned about the third challenge to his leadership by Cllr Roxanne Mashari at the Labour AGM on Saturday, he said: “It’s democracy. We are standing in a room of democracy today. That is exactly what it’s about. If people want to make changes, no problem.”
All eyes will now be on Willesden Green, which will face a by-election in due course following the death of Cllr Lesley Jones MBE on April 30.
Labour: 54 seats 56.87per cent
Conservative: three seats 23.36pc
Labour and co-operative Party: three seats 4.25pc
Liberal Democrats: 0 11.68pc
Green Party: 0 2.73pc
Women’s Equality Party: 0 1pc
Duma Polska = Polish Pride: 0 1pc