‘Some people have sent a message’

Date published: 26 May 2014

THE Liberal Democrats endured a disastrous election after losing four seats on Oldham Council.

The party retained three seats but is now down from 14 to 10. The Lib-Dems lost seats in Saddleworth North to an Independent, Saddleworth West and Lees to UKIP and St James and Waterhead to Labour. They came in last place in Failsworth East and West, with 24 and 29 respectively.

Downhearted Lib-Dem leader Howard Sykes said: “A certain set of people were attracted to vote for UKIP. There’s clearly an anti-European sentiment some people will want to send a message about. We have defended three seats. I’m sorry to lose Alan Roughley to the Independent candidate, which was all about the new school.”

Councillor Rod Blyth retained his Shaw seat with 1,106 votes. Lib-Dem Dave Murphy won in Crompton with 889 votes, although it was a close contest, with UKIP getting 742 votes and Labour 697.