Two carefully and enthusiastically organised campaigns in for the Sandwich and Reculver by-elections have seen Labour winning new voters and sending a clear message that in these supposedly 'unwinnable' seats, Labour is gaining ground.
Sara Trillo lost by only 33 votes in the Sandwich election. Voters on the doorstep spoke of years of complacency and were amazed that a candidate had 'bothered' to come and listen to their views. Labour is fighting this cynicism in politics and working to listen to and speak with residents. What was clear in Sandwich was the desire expressed by many for a fresh voice on the council.
Sara has expressed her sincere thanks to all activists who came and supported her campaign, members from across the constituency who aimed to ensure a really solid Labour presence in this previously rock solid Conservative ward.
In Reculver too, a really sound campaign was organised with very real benefits as can be seen from Herne Bay Labour's comments below.
A message from Herne Bay Labour:
Herne Bay Labour and Simon Warley would like to give a huge thanks to everyone from South Thanet who helped out with the Reculver By-Election campaign. Your help was much appreciated.
We ran an excellent campaign with almost 30 volunteers helping at different times in a ward in which Labour had never campaigned in before. We were more visible than any of the other parties and lots of new members got involved. We did covered the ward with 2 rounds of leaflets, canvassed the entire ward and doorstepped throughout Polling day.
Unfortunately it was not enough this time and the votes cast were;
Liberal Democrats: 91
UKIP still have some strength in East Kent and the anti-Tory vote continues to be split.
However, we believe that the experience and enthusiasm generated amongst Herne Bay members and the way the 3 CLPs of North Thanet, South Thanet and Canterbury & Whitstable worked together will serve us all well in the County Council elections next year.
Herne Bay Labour