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Message from Matthew Vizard, Chair of Exeter Labour Party

Dear All,

I hope by now most of you will have heard about the great election results in Exeter. I wanted to send you details and thank everyone who gave their time over the past months and/or on election day to enable us to retain control of Exeter City Council and help regain a Labour MEP – the excellent Clare Moody – for the South West

A third of the 40 City Council ward seats were contested on Thursday and Labour gained three councillors. We now hold 27 of the 40 City Council seats, giving Labour amajority of 14 – a record as far as we know. Gaining three additional women councillors also means we have achieved virtual parity of women and men in our council team – a ratio of 13:14 – which may be a first for a ruling council group in the UK.

European Election Results

Clare Moody has been elected as Labour MEP for the South West, an important gain after Labour lost its one SW MEP in 2009. We have sent Clare our congratulations and hope to see her in Exeter again soon.

The Lib Dems have lost their MEP – a remarkable result in one of their few heartlands. The Tories lost one of their three MEPs and the Greens gained their first.

Exeter Poll -
Labour – 9608
UKIP – 8801
Conservatives – 7587
Greens – 5244
Lib Dems – 2760

Overall South West Poll -
UKIP – 484,184
Conservatives – 433,151
Labour – 206,124
Greens – 166,447
Lib Dems – 160,376

Breakdown of 6 South West MEPs -
UKIP = 2 (no change)
Conservatives = 2 (-1)
Labour = 1 (+1)
Greens = 1 (+1)

Exeter City Council Elections

You can find the full breakdown of results on the Exeter City Council website -

Labour Gains

Alphington – Suaad George was elected, a Labour gain from the Lib Dems. We now hold all 3 City Council seats in Alphington as well as the County Council Alphington/Cowick seat.

Heavitree – Olwen Foggin was elected, a Labour gain from the Tories. We now hold both City Council seats in Heavitree as well as the Heavitree/Whipton Barton County Council seat.

Polsloe – Christine Raybould-Gooding was elected, a Labour gain from the Tories, defeating the long-serving Tory group leader Yolonda Henson. We now hold both City Council seats in Polsloe as well as the Newtown/Polsloe County Council seat.

Young Labour Victories

We have two new committed young councillors from our brilliant Exeter University student group -

Mincinglake – Stephen Brimble held the seat for Labour.

Pinhoe – Meg Williams was elected seeing off the Tory challenge in a key swing seat.

Labour continues to hold all the Mincinglake and Pinhoe seats. Our huge thanks to Moira McDonald and Ian Martin – high profile voices on Exeter City Council who both decided to step down as councillors this year but I’m sure will continue to play a big role in Exeter Labour Party. I know they will both be delighted with their young successors.

Hard Working Labour Councillors Rewarded

Our returning councillors all held their seats comfortably -

Cowick – Heather Morris held her seat for Labour.

Exwick – Rachel Sutton held her seat for Labour.

Newtown – Roger Spackman held his seat for Labour.

Priory – Lesley Robson held her seat for Labour.

Whipton Barton – Labour Council Leader Pete Edwards held his seat.

Next Time!

Our success in the last few years, includes increasingly strong showings in seats where we have not traditionally had our biggest support.

Duryard – John Chilvers, another of our talented young students came an excellent second to the Tories in a seat we did not target.

Pennsylvania – In a key target seat for the Tories, Dan Richards continued to prove there is good Labour support there. Peter Holland took the seat from the Lib Dem Tim Payne.

St Davids – Despite her incredibly hard working team, Natalie Vizard narrowly missed being elected in a titanic battle with the Lib Dems who had to pour their limited resources into the area in order to defend it. This cost them vital effort in Alphington and Pennsylvania, where they lost both councillors. Stella Brock held her seat but Labour holds the other City seat and the St Davids/St James County seat.

Thank you

Thank you to all of our candidates and to their teams; to Ben Bradshaw and his team for their tireless efforts over virtually the entire city; to all those who helped at Clifton Hill led by Pete King and the indefatigable Eddie Lopez and to those who generously hosted committee rooms in their homes.

Finally thank you to our supreme strategist and Campaign Organiser Dom Collins for a brilliant job once again. Calm, organised and authoritative, he is always a pleasure to work with.

The campaign continues…

I hope everyone has a chance to enjoy some well earned rest ahead of the vital campaign towards the 2015 general election where we hope to get our MP Ben Bradshaw elected for a fifth time. There will also be further city council ward elections next year and members are invited to contact us if you would be interested in standing.


We hope to see many of you at our post-election celebration party this Friday (30th May) from 7.30pm at 26B Clifton Hill. Entry is free. Buffet food (contributions welcome) and bar.

And don’t forget the fabulous Exeter Respect Festival next weekend – celebrating our city’s diversity.

Saturday 31st May – Sunday 1st June in Belmont Park.

Come and help out on our stall or just say hello.

Thank you all.

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