FIGURES which may provide some clues to what lies behind the drama that played out in Hampstead and Kilburn last week have been sent my way. The spreadsheet, I’m told, DOES NOT show the votes collected by the parliamentary candidates, but instead reveals how people voted at the local elections held on the same day in council wards within the boundaries of this fiercely-fought seat.
And what does it show? Labour clearly wins in Kilburn (Brent) and Kilburn (Camden) where council seats were gains. But elsewhere in the local elections, people marked their cross elsewhere. So much so in fact that if the local election vote in the north of the borough and those extra wards in Brent had been completely replicated in the Jackson-Philp-Fordham battle, the suggestion is that Labour would actually have lost.
The alternative 1-2-3 would give Lib Dem Ed Fordham victory, Chris Philp would still be second and Glenda Jackson would slip to third. Trouble for Glenda’s opponents is, they didn’t mirror their votes in this way in the General Election poll.
So what happened? Some people may have only bothered to vote in the General Election despite having the council ballot papers thrust in their hands at the polling stations. That would be a particularly determined effort to take part democracy nationally, but not locally.
Alternatively, Glenda – for all the leaflet accusations and tabloid headlines about her being lazy and never seen in the constituency – appears to have retained a high personal vote. The Oscar winner on the doorstep enjoyed a certain amount of loyalty and so it appears a game-changing number of people voted for Glenda to be their MP on the same day that they voted for Lib Dems – and in some places Conservatives – to take seats on the council.