The result locally on Thursday wasn't great for Labour, although I'm delighted that our voters turned out again to support an excellent candidate, who put up a good fight against an established candidate who fought a better one. No excuses - we need to up our game for 2015 and beyond. The prize in 2015 is not just Acocks Green - that's a key part of defeating the current MP. Interestingly, the Labour vote in Acocks Green and across Yardley translated almost completely across to the European vote (in fact, we only lost 9000 votes between the locals and the Europeans across the entire city, with 93,000 votes cast in Birmingham for our European candidates). The LibDem vote pretty much halved, which means that we would have won both Acocks Green and South Yardley and UKIP would have taken Stechford and Yardley North and Sheldon, if that vote had translated to the local contests.
For those who missed it, here's the result:
Roger Harmer (Lib Dem) 2679
Rachel Seabright (Labour) 2041
Amanda Baker (Green) 422
Charlotte Hodivala (Con) 372
Eamonn Flynn (TUSC) 254
Peter Johnson (SDP) 98
So, congratulations again to Roger and to his campaign manager, Iain (who I'd also like to thank again for his service to the ward over his years as a councillor and wish him well for the future). It is really easy to forget that we don't (I think) actually dislike each other and we'll work together for Acocks Green.