Readers, the results from local by-elections earlier this week that featured Green Party candidates were as follows:
Cardiff UA, Riverside: Labour 1071 (45.9%, -0.8%), Plaid Cymru 780 (33.5%, +2.4%), Con 155 (6.6%, -1.1%), UKIP 110 (4.7%), Green 109 (4.7%, -3.2%), Liberal Democrats 85 (3.6%, -0.2%), TUSC 21 (0.9%, -1.8%). All changes are since 2012.
Eilean Siar UA, An Taobh Siar Agus Nis: John MacLeod (No Description) 886 (86.9%), Richard Froggatt (Independent) 75 (7.4%), Scottish Green Party 59 (5.8%).
South Hams DC, Totnes Town: Green 570 (30.1%,-3.4%), Lib Dem 558 (29.5%, +12.1%), Lab 432 (22.8%, +3.7%), Con 268 (14.2%, +0.1%), Independent P 63 (3.3%).
South Oxfordshire DC, Sandford & The Whittenhams: Con 290 (42.8%, -4.3%), Lib Dem 249 (36.7%, +16.3%), Lab 89 (13.1%, -3.7%), Green 50 (7.4%, -8.3%)
Highland UA, Aird and Loch Ness: Lib Dem 1029 (33.5%, +21.2%), SNP 1000 (32.5%, +4.4%), Con 467 (15.2%, +8.3%), Independent 293 (9.5%), Green 267 (9.2%). Lib Dem gain from SNP on 4th count.
I am in particular relieved we held our council seat in Totnes against the challenge Labour and the Lib Dems were putting up, although we have yet again been squeezed elsewhere where other parties have been running each other close. Our first foray into the Eilean Siar area in Scotland yielded a good result given that Eilean Siar residents generally prefer nonpartisan candidates who have long-standing connections to the islands. (Clan MacLeod is a well known Scottish clan resident on the Lewis islands of the Outer Hebrides, for example). We also made a good impact in the Highland by-election given that it was the Lib Dems' first local by-election in Scotland for years, and the first one so far since May 2015 that the SNP has lost.
With two key renewable energy firms sadly having gone into liquidation recently as a result of the Conservative government's unfair new policy on renewable energy, (despite the fact renewable energy is getting cheaper and overall demand for UK energy peaked in 2005 and has been falling since), I believe that our championing of green energy and its benefits to us all can help us strive to do better in rural areas and small towns in addition to more urbanised areas where we have a lot of our councillors in Britain.