Local elections 2022: Labour lose Croydon - council goes to no overall control

Croydon was the third council Labour lost control of in London, after sealing three big wins in the early hours of Friday morning.

Labour have lost control of Croydon Council and the authority is now under no overall control, sealing a bad weekend for the party in London’s local elections.

Keir Starmer’s party had a great night on Thursday, winning Westminster, Barnet and Wandsworth, however they have been brought back down to earth with losses in Harrow, Tower Hamlets and now Croydon.

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In the south London borough, Labour won 34 seats, while the Conservative Party won 32 seats, Liberal Democrats won one and the Green Party won two seats.

That was a loss of seven seats compared with 2018, and the Conservatives also won the mayoralty.

The Croydon count ongoing. Credit: Tara O’Connor

It is the first time every the Greens have won seats on Croydon Council and the party’s Ria Patel and Esther Sutton will join Labour councillor Chris Clark to represent the Fairfield Ward.

Ria, who is Croydon’s first non-binary councillor and will be the youngest on the council, said: “It shows that the Green vote is on the rise and that people want change.”

While Claire Bonham is the first Lib Dem to be elected to the council in 20 years, she will represent the Crystal Palace and Upper Norwood ward alongside two Labour councillors.

Labour’s Stuart King said it was a “disappointing” result for the party which lost seven seats on the council compared to 2018.

He said: “This is a very disappointing result for Labour, the message from the voters here in Croydon is clear they didn’t put their trust in us this time.”

The Conservatives picked up four seats on the council across New Addington South, New Addington North and Waddon.

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New Conservative mayor Jason Perry, who was elected on Saturday morning, said the challenge would now be working together on the council.

He said: “I think the Croydon electorate have spoken, we have a council of no overall control we have to work together to put Croydon back on the right path. Together we need to move forward and fix Croydon’s problems we need to restore faith in Croydon.”

After the local election on Thursday, the full results came in on Sunday evening at Trinity School in Shirley.

Following delays with the mayoral count, the council votes were counted over two days which started at 6pm on Saturday night and continued on Sunday afternoon.

It was the first election the council has faced since it was forced to declare effective bankruptcy in 2020 and issue a Section 114 notice.

The financial state of the council was a key issue for voters this year, as was the condition of social housing after shocking conditions were exposed at a council-owned tower block in South Norwood.