SOME wards are less difficult than others. There, got the excuses in early. On our sister paper (YourHarlow) we had a by-election and we all called that the winning (Labour) candidate could get 738 votes. We had been out by three. And now we return to Ockendon…. .

Psephlogically it’s a funny old defender. There were Labour councillors: the deeply underwhelming Aaron Kiely, the Barry Lawrence.
There was an excellent Conservative group of Amanda Arnold, Barry Johnson along with Lynn Carr.

In the second Ockendon is represented by 2 members of the Thurrock Independent Party, cllr David Potter and cllr Jan Baker. They had been chosen as UKIP councillors. There’s a certain irony in that we can’t remember either councillor uttering one word from the council chamber. But, we could recall their former Ockendon colleague, Kevin Wheeler uttering at least one word…. .which brings us.

Winners

2002: Labour: 61 percent Maj 272
2004: Conservative: 831-789 and Labour: 743 (Three candidates chosen)
2006: Labour: -45 percent Maj 125

2007: Conservative-34 percent Maj 14

2008: Conservative-45 percent Maj 210
2010: Conservative-41 percent Maj 236
2011: Labour-41 percent Maj 87
2012: Conservative-43 percent Maj 91
2014: UKIP-46 percent Maj 414
2015: UKIP-44 percent Maj 694
2016: UKIP-45 percent Maj 404

What can we conclude from the preceding? UKIP have been very popular. The ward has been a sea of purple throughout the General Election of 2015. Look at these thumping majorities at 2014, 2015, 2016. . But then arrived Brexit in 2017, arrived the vote to get Ukip’s startling collapse . But, there wasn’t any elections in Thurrock however there was a General Election. UKIP’s vote went from 15,713 into 10,112. It was bad but not a tragedy. Then came the decision for those Thurrock UKIP councillors set up a new party and to depart UKIP known as the Thurrock Independents.

Will voters create a change out of UKIP into Thurrock Independents (TI)? Some will not vote although some might. There’s a tendency for a lot of us to live at a political bubble. There can be many of those 1038 Ockendon inhabitants who voted UKIP at the time of requesting 2016, who might turn up searching to their UKIP candidate without any nice photos of bumble bees or mantras of rising above punch and judy politics could tempt them over.

We do not believe we believe the Thurrock Independent candidates will struggle to retain their seats between now and 2020 and the Thurrock Independents will triumph.

They talk about the talk of a residents party and around the country, residents institutions have lived and thrived (Loughton, Havering, Uttlesford etc) . We wonder if, apart from a few exceptions, whether there’s the desire for the very long term among the TI’s.

The Thurrock Independent candidate is Allen Mayes, who’s worked in the background of politics to get a reasonable period of time.

So, the winner could come from Labour or Conservative.

Labour’s effort has been led by the Orsett Hospital question.     It’s been a vital campaigning problem this past year since her remark was made by Jackie Doyle-Price at the hustings. It’s been compounded with the controversy over the consultation process and reports that many solutions won’t be remaining in Thurrock. Place that alongside council tax raises, offense, potholes, Lower Thames Crossing, fly-tipping and it all gives a reasonable amount of compost to Labour, the like of which we do not think we have seen in a long time. Oh…and the council tax has gone up.

The Labour candidate is Les Strange. The neighborhood guy made the information regarding what he’d shared on Facebook. Obnoxious stuff. His vote affects. Not sure. It has influenced the willingness to get a number to venture out campaigning for him and some could feel a triumph is a phyrric victory.

You could wonder about the Jeremy Corbyn variable. They do not have time to get its left wing in Ockendon they state.

By all reports that the Conservatives trying to counter those things and are working hard. They will obviously point into the investment program of the Conservative-led Thurrock Council, itplans to tackle anti-social behavior and’s record on cleansing the borough. Who knows, it might break through. Participants like former councillor Barry Johnson will attest that there are plenty of loyal sailors in Brandon Groves and beyond, who might not own a great deal of time for neighborhood personalities but are blue into the core.

We guess we need to return to the last local election in 2016 and also ask a question.

UKIP: 1038

Cons: 634

Labour: 558

The Tories overcome on Labour . However, will these 1038 votes go? Many won’t turn up. A couple of hundred into the Thurrock Independents.

A desire is to predict that the Conservatives will win it but that Labour pessimists seem quite bullish. There have been several by-elections throughout the country and not a single win, gain or hold. You just wonder whether there’s an appetite for unemployment Conservative today.

Therefore: Labour advantage….but is will be shut.

The article Ward by Ward: Who’ll win the Ockendon By-Election? Appeared on Your Thurrock.