The Conservatives have lost more than 1,000 seats and more than 35 councils in the local council elections, with Labour also suffering losses in an indication that Brexit uncertainty is taking its toll on both major parties.
With 222 of the 248 English councils holding elections on Thursday having declared their results, the Conservatives had lost 1,008 seats, a figure in excess of already low expectations. The last results will be declared by around 9pm on Friday.
Although Conservatives suffered by far the biggest losses, Labour was also down by 86 seats at 5:30pm. The Liberal Democrats had made net gains of more than 540 seats, while the Green party gained more than 140 councillors.
So far the Conservatives have lost control of a net 37 councils including Basildon, Southend-on-Sea, Peterborough and Tandridge, while Labour has also lost control of Wirral, Hartlepool and Bolsover councils, all to no overall control.
The Liberal Democrats were the major beneficiaries, taking control of 11 councils. They took seven previously controlled by the Conservatives including Bath and North East Somerset. They have also gained three councils that were previously under no overall control.
The results also show the major parties faring differently in areas of the country that voted to Leave the European Union and those that voted to Remain. Labour’s net losses were suffered in northern areas of England that voted Leave, while the Conservatives are faring worse in areas that were majority Remain.
The figures used here compare the election results to the outgoing number of councillors. This produces slightly different figures than comparisons with the 2015 election result, because it includes changes in council composition through boundary changes, by-elections and defections between parties.
Additional development by Jennifer Johnson