Gospel Oak by-election: Labour’s Marcus Boyland wins as Lib Dems take second place
PUBLISHED: 10:03 05 May 2017 | UPDATED: 15:17 05 May 2017
Labour’s Marcus Boyland has become Camden’s newest councillor after comprehensively defeating his rivals in the Gospel Oak by-election – and bucking the national trend.
He won 1,485 votes while the Lib Dems won 587, the Tories 523, Greens 273 and Ukip 75 on a bad night for Labour.
Nationally, the party has lost 267 seats in the local elections as of the latest count.
The Tories are the big winners, with 383 gains, while the Lib Dems have so far lost 36, the Greens gained two and Ukip lost 105.
Lib Dem Gospel Oak candidate Stephen Crosher, who is also standing for Parliament in Holborn and St Pancras, saw his party come second – a major boost on its fifth place finish in the ward in 2014.
The Greens – represented by Dee Searle – dropped from third to fourth, while Tory candidate Marx de Morais saw his party fall from second to third.
Ukip, meanwhile, went from 361 votes in 2014 to 75 this time around, with Giles Game falling into last place.
Cllr Boyland said it was a “fantastic result” for Labour, adding: “Thanks everyone who made it possible.”
Mr Crosher, meanwhile, said the Lib Dem surge in Gospel Oak was down to the “huge effort” of volunteers who helped him campaign.
He added: “The result here in Gospel Oak has seen our vote share increase 300 per cent.
“Between the Tories imposing hard Brexit and Corbyn’s Labour being both an ineffective opposition and supporting the Tories, the Lib Dems are the only alternative.
“We continue to fight for an open, tolerant and united Britain.”
The election was called after Labour councillor Maeve McCormack resigned because she could no longer afford to live in Camden.
Speaking to the Ham&High in March, Cllr Boyland, 48, said: “I want to focus on the anti-social behaviour of young adults – it’s worrying residents and we don’t want it to build up.
“But I also want to see the regeneration of the Queen’s Crescent area and obviously the market.”
The Kentish Town resident added: “We want regeneration of the housing and the estates.”
Asked about the controversial council policy to make rubbish bin collections fortnightly for parts of the borough – including most of Gospel Oak – he said it was important to encourage recycling.
“Most other local authorities have a similar system and I think most people will agree with our decision in the future,” he said.