Local elections: 'historic victory' for Labour in Barnet

Barnet's elected Labour councillors

Barnet's elected Labour councillors - Credit: Stefania Di Ciò

Labour has taken control of Barnet Council with "an historic victory".

It was an exciting night at the StoneX Stadium for the election count, where Labour won 41 of the 63 seats, up from 25 seats in 2018, while the Conservatives won 22 seats – down 16.  

Councillor Barry Rawlings

Councillor Barry Rawlings - Credit: Stefania Di Ciò

Barry Rawlings, Barnet Labour leader, said: “This is an historic victory. Barnet has never had a Labour majority. We had the right team, with the right policies at the right time.”

Cllr Rawlings said there were lots of factors contributing, first of all “good candidates” and a “good campaign”. 

“A lot of the voters felt very neglected by the council, there are some national issues and I think a lot of normally conservative voters feel alienated from the Boris Johnson government.

“We want a different relationship with residents of Barnet. I think for too long they have been treated like cash machines rather than as partners.

“We want to have that partnership with local people to find local solutions for local problems.”

Labour cheering as more wins are announced in Barnet

Labour cheering as more wins are announced in Barnet - Credit: Stefania Di Ciò

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Labour won all three seats in Childs Hill, taking two from the Conservatives, and held onto control in East Finchley.

The Conservatives held Garden Suburb and Golders Green, which have gone down to two councillors per ward after boundary changes. 

Dan Thomas, Barnet Conservatives leader and ex-Barnet leader, said his candidates fought a “very hard and active campaign”. 

“It is really disappointing, absolutely gutted that we have lost excellent councillors this evening through no fault of their own," he said. 

“I am really proud of the team for the work and effort that they have put in.”

Victorious Conservative councillors Rohit Grover and Michael Mire after the Garden Suburb declaration

Victorious Conservative councillors Rohit Grover and Michael Mire after the Garden Suburb declaration - Credit: Stefania Di Ciò

Gabriel Rozenberg, Barnet Lib Dem leader, said: “It’s Labour’s night, we congratulate them. They won an exceptional victory, it’s the best result in Barnet in Labour history.”

Green candidate David Farbey, who stood in Brunswick Park, said his party put up a good showing: “I think it has been a good night for Barnet and we look forward to the future and seeing what this new lab administration will deliver and we will make sure that they do their best for the environment.”

Debbie Brazil, from the Women’s Equality Party, said she was disappointed having lost in Golders Green, but “really pleased with our performance” in the other wards. 

Barnet's victorious Labour team

Barnet's victorious Labour team - Credit: Stefania Di Ciò