10 things we learnt from the local elections
Where next for politics in Medway?
It’s been a few days since Medway elected a brand new council, and chose to change course for the first time this century. Now that the dust has settled and we’ve managed to catch up on our sleep just a little bit, let’s ponder the lessons that can be taken away from Medway’s seismic local elections.
Labour can win when they put the work in
It’s been a joke for over the last few elections that the biggest challenger to Medway Labour is Medway Labour itself. Previous election cycles have seen the party bogged down in candidate scandals and unfocused campaigns. In 2023, the party were ruthless in their campaigning, only targeting the exact wards they needed to win thanks to a strategy devised by Cllrs Naushabah Khan and Harinder Mahil. Selections were largely smooth, and activists knew exactly where they needed to put the work in. The final weeks of the campaign saw repeated visits from Labour’s national leadership and prominent MPs, a sign that the party was increasingly confident of their chances in Medway. It might be easy to dismiss Labour’s success as being a result of the anti-Conservative political winds nationally, but it’s worth noting that the Conservatives didn’t lose any vote share in Medway, scoring 34% in both 2019 and 2023, while Labour jumped from 27% to 38% in the same period.