It was disappointing night for Labour. They had made Liverpool their number one target in the country but they failed to gain the City Council. Labour had hoped that taking Liverpool would be the one good news story on May 2nd against a background of losses across the UK and Wales.
The Liberal Democrats held onto Liverpool against a background of 12 months of bad news stories. Poor financial settlements and the refusal of the government to support the City with capitalisation to fund Capital of Culture saw Liverpool residents getting a raw deal and the City was criticised for having too little money in the bank.
The Liberal Democrats have pledged to continue their 10 year track record of keeping Council tax rates low for local residents.
The Liberal Democrats entered the elections with 47 councillors. On the night Labour were shocked as a former Labour councillor now independent crossed the floor on the night and joined the Liberal Democrats to hold onto majority control of the City. Councillor Nadia Stewart did so in the interests of the City. Having left the Labour party due to bullying, Nadia took the brave decision to join the Liberal Democrats and so ensure that the City’s future for the next two years would not be dependent on the casting vote of the Mayor .
Whilst there were clearly some reverses in electoral success in the city for the Liberal Democrats, there are now two years for the administration to consolidate their position and bring some stability and control to the City. Liverpool remains a transformed place from 10 years ago under Labour. The election results have saved Liverpool from Labour control and a return to their high taxes and poor services.
The focus now will be upon delivering on promises to local people and continuing the regeneration of the City.
Warren Bradley is Lib Dem leader of the Liverpool City council