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Conservative Party faces losses in Britain’s local elections


Conservative Party faces losses in Britain’s local elections

Photo: Andrew Milligan/PA

More than 22 million voters will head to the polls today in England’s first set of local elections since last year’s general election.

More than 4,300 council seats are up for grabs across 156 councils, which include all 32 London boroughs as well as every seat in the major metropolitan centres of Birmingham, Manchester, Leeds and Newcastle.

The elections are a litmus test for support for Prime Minister Theresa May’s Conservative Party, which lost its parliamentary majority in last year’s general election.

Polls suggest Labour will make gains today. The party is expected to pick up close to 200 extra council seats, mostly in London. The extent of Labour’s success can be foreshadowed by the results of two particular council elections: Wandsworth and Westminister—both historically Conservative bastions under Tory control since 1978 and 1964 respectively–which pollsters predict Labour stands a chance at taking this year.

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Conservatives are expected to still have an edge of over 3,000 more council seats in Britain, but the extent to which Labour gains seats could be indicative of how the electoral map might change during the next round of parliamentary elections.

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