For anyone who hasn’t heard, we won the Totteridge by election. The following are a few thoughts on the experience which may encourage others!
We went into this in third place. At the last full Council elections two years ago, we only fielded paper candidates in Totteridge. This two member ward elected one Tory and one Labour – but the Labour councillor (who was the one who had tragically died very suddenly) was popular and hard working. In other words, the Tories might have expected to take both seats had it not been for the personal vote of the Labour man. The Conservatives really should have expected to win this by election with a half decent campaign.
The Tories helped us out however, by selecting an untried candidate with no track record. They had also recently decided to close our local lido. This pool closure was something we had already campaigned against, and achieved a lot of public support. So we had an issue, and we decided to fight hard on it.
We worked hard. We canvassed every day. We had a lot of outside help from other parties (for which I thank you all). We had a good agent who orchestrated a classic Lib Dem by election campaign. We put out lots of well written literature. By the end of the campaign we had canvassed the ward three times and a had very good idea that it was winnable. On polling day, we delivered leaflets from 5am and didn’t stop knocking up until 9.45pm! We did everything we possibly, humanly could have done.
At the count, people kept taking me to one side and telling me we were ahead. By then, I was somewhat knackered and running on adrenalin only. When the result was announced, we had won by a country mile with over 50% of the vote. It was beyond our wildest dreams – but well worth every ache and pain.
Thank you to everyone who helped. This was a fantastic team effort, and everyone who played their part should feel proud of it!
- New shoes £50
- New toners for printer £150
- The looks on the faces of the Tories when the realised they had blown it – Priceless!