One week before the nationwide elections to the European Parliament, and elections in about half of England to county councils, there was only one byelection on 28 May. Labour easily held its seat at North Ormesby and Bramble Farm ward, Middlesbrough borough council.
There is more movement of councillors between parties. Starting off in Stoke-on-Trent city council, Joan Bell (Longton South ward), portfolio holder for community safety and neighbourhood management, has resigned from the Labour group and will sit as an independent due to dissatisfaction with group structure. She has indicated she intends to support the Labour group.
Up in Sefton borough council, Paul Larkin (Derby ward) has left the Labour group to join the Liberal Democrats, citing housing and regeneration as the main policy areas behind his move. Meanwhile on Swansea county borough council, Richard Lewis (Gower ward) has also joined the Liberal Democrats, after what might be described as a peripatetic political career including past membership of the Conservatives, sitting as an Independent councillor, but being a UKIP Parliamentary candidate.
On Lewes district council, Robbie Robertson (Newhaven Valley ward) has moved the other way, joining the Conservatives from the Liberal Democrats, claiming that his old party failed to utilise his talents. Finally, a member of Renfrewshire council charged with fraud, Tommy Williams (Paisley North West ward) will now be considered as an Independent and not a member of the Labour group.