2011 United Kingdom local elections
The 2011 United Kingdom local elections were held on Thursday 5 May 2011. In England, direct elections were held in all 36 Metropolitan boroughs, 194 Second-tier district authorities, 49 unitary authorities and various mayoral posts, meaning local elections took place in all parts of England with the exception of seven unitary authorities, seven districts and boroughs. For the majority of English districts and the 25 unitary authorities that are elected "all out" these were the first elections since 2007. In Northern Ireland, there were elections to all 26 local councils. Elections took place to most English parish councils. On the same day, elections to the Scottish Parliament, National Assembly of Wales and Northern Ireland Assembly were held. A UK-wide referendum on whether to adopt the Alternative Vote electoral system for elections to the House of Commons and the Leicester South by-election was held. Labour, contesting its first elections under the leadership of Ed Miliband, finished narrowly ahead of the Conservatives.
The BBC's projected national vote share put Labour on 37%, the Conservatives on 35% and the Liberal Democrats on 15%. Rallings and Thrasher of Plymouth University put Labour narrowly behind on 37% of the national vote, compared to 38% for the Conservatives and 16% for the Liberal Democrats. Elections were due to be held to Scottish councils, but these have been postponed until 2012 to avoid clashing with the elections to the Scottish Parliament, which in 2007 had caused confusion among voters. British, Irish and European Union citizens living in the UK who were 18 or over on election day were entitled to vote in the local council and devolved assembly elections; the deadline for voters in England and Northern Ireland to register to vote in the 5 May elections was midnight on Thursday 14 April 2011, whilst voters in Scotland had until midnight on Friday 15 April 2011 to register. Anyone in the United Kingdom who qualified as an anonymous elector had until midnight on Tuesday 26 April 2011 to register.
The Labour Party was described as obtaining "mixed results". Their support recovered following a string of poor local election results during Gordon Brown's tenure and they gained over 800 council seats off the Liberal Democrats. Labour's gains were overshadowed by the coinciding Scottish Parliament election where they were routed by the Scottish National Party; the Conservatives narrowly gained a small number of seats. They were helped by the gaining additional seats from the Liberal Democrats in the south west, south east and East Anglia; the election was a disaster for the Liberal Democrats, who lost 40% of the council seats they were defending and lost majorities in 9 of the 19 councils they controlled, including strongholds in Sheffield and Hull. There were some surprising gains for the Conservatives against the Liberal Democrats, with councils considered strongholds for the latter, like North Norfolk, Vale of White Horse and Lewes changing hands; this led to some calls for Nick Clegg to resign.
The losses coincided with the landslide rejection of the Alternative Vote referendum, supported by the Liberal Democrats and some members of the Labour Party. Source: and Vote 2011: Northern Ireland Council Elections Source: All 36 English Metropolitan borough councils one third of their seats were up for election. In 30 English Unitary authorities the whole council were up for election. In 19 English Unitary authorities one third of the council were up for election. In 127 English district authorities the whole council were up for election. In 67 English district authorities one third of the council were up for election. Five direct mayoral elections were held. Elections were held on the same day to local government in Northern Ireland
Firle is a village and civil parish in the Lewes District of East Sussex, England. Firle refers to an old-English/Anglo-Saxon word fierol meaning overgrown with oak. Although the original division of East Firle and West Firle still remains, East Firle is now confined to the houses of Heighton Street, which lie to the east of the Firle Park. West Firle is now referred to as Firle although West Firle remains its official name, it is located south of the A27 road four miles east of Lewes. During the reign of Edward the Confessor Firle was part of the Abbey of Wilton's estate. Following the Norman conquest of England the village and surrounding lands were passed to Robert, Count of Mortain. Half-brother of King William I, Robert was the largest landowner in the country after the monarch; the village is mentioned in the Domesday Book, referred to as'Ferla'. The value of the village is listed as being £44, amongst the highest in the county; the manor house, the site on which Firle Place now stands, was occupied from the early 14th century by the'de Livet' family, an ancient Sussex gentry family of Norman descent who owned the manor.
The Levett family would include founders of Sussex's iron industry, royal courtiers, rectors, an Oxford University dean, a prominent early physician and medical educator, a lord mayor of London. An ancient bronze seal found in the 1800s near Eastbourne, now in the collection of the Lewes Castle Museum, shows the coat-of-arms of John Livet and is believed to have belonged to the first member of the family named lord of Firle in 1316. On the bankruptcy of lord of the manor Thomas Levett in 1440, the ownership passed to Bartholomew Bolney, whose daughter married William Gage in 1472. Following the death of Bolney in 1476 without a male heir, the seat of Firle Place was passed to William Gage and has remained the seat of the Viscount Gage since. During the Second World War, Firle Plantation to the south of the village was the operational base of a four-man Home Guard Auxiliary Unit; the used word greengage certainly derives from a member of the Gage family, though there is some confusion over whether it was the Reverend John Gage or Sir William Gage, 7th Baronet who are both variously credited for the import of this fruit into Britain from France.
The writer Virginia Woolf visited nearby Lewes in December 1910 and decided to relocate in Firle, where she rented a house and renamed it Little Talland House. Pointz Hall, a fictional manor from her novel Between the Acts, is believed to be inspired by Firle Place. Woolf's sister, the painter and interior designer Vanessa Bell, moved to Firle in 1916 taking residence with her live-in lover Duncan Grant in Charleston Farmhouse, which subsequently became a regular haunt of the Bloomsbury Group. Vanessa Bell, her son Quentin Bell, Duncan Grant are all buried in the churchyard of St Peter's, Firle. Writer Katherine Mansfield, who had close ties with the Bloomsbury Group lived in Firle for a brief time, her landlord was economist John Maynard Keynes, who moved to Firle in 1925 and died there in 1946. Keynes was cremated and his ashes scattered above the downs of nearby Tilton. General Thomas Gage was born in Firle. St Peter's Church notably contains an alabaster effigy of Sir John Gage wearing his Order of the Garter and lying beside his wife Philippa.
It has a John Piper stained-glass window in warm colours, depicting Blake's Tree of Life. There are memorials for those named Bolney, Levett and others; the current vicar is the Reverend Peter Owen-Jones. The Ram Inn is the only remaining one of the village's three original public houses, that all acted as resting stops on the Lewes to Alfriston coach road, it was the village court room where the rents for tenants farmers were collected and set. The area in front of the Ram is called the Beach, not to be confused with the Dock, further up the street. Firle Cricket Club is said to be one of the oldest in the country. Earlier in 1725 Sir William Gage, 7th Baronet challenged the Duke of Richmond to a game of cricket, one of the first recorded matches; the club continues to be central to village life and has two teams which both compete in the East Sussex Cricket League. The Firle 1st XI are in ESCL Division 3 and the Firle 2nd XI are in ESCL Division 9. Both teams played in the Cuckmere Valley League.
South of the village lie the South Firle Beacon, which reaches a height of 712 feet. The beacon was once a lighting beacon used as part of a warning system during the time of the Spanish Armada in 1588. On the site there are around 50 bronze age burial barrows. Firle Bonfire Society is first mentioned in 1879 in a diary of the vicar of Firle, Reverend Crawley, though it was re-formed in 1982 to encourage and promote traditional bonfire festivities in the village; the society forms part of a network of bonfire societies in the Lewes area which serve the purpose both of remembering the Gunpowder Plot and of recalling the fate of the Sussex Martyrs. The village holds its celebrations in October before the main event in Lewes. Traditionally the Firle Bonfire Society Pioneers wear Valencian costumes, it is customary to burn an effigy other than Guy Fawkes. On a local level, Firle is governed by Firle Parish Council, which meets every two months in the Firle village memorial hall, its responsibilities include footpaths, street lighting and minor planning applications.
The parish council has five seats available which were uncontested in the
St John Without
St John Without is a small civil parish in the Lewes District of East Sussex, covering an area to the north-west of the town of Lewes. The parish was formed in 1894 as Lewes St John Without from the part of the ancient parish of Lewes St John outside the borough of Lewes. From 1894 to 1974 it was in the rural district of Chailey; the parish includes the small hamlet of Chiltington and a few dispersed farms and houses along Allington Road to the foot of the South Downs. St John Without is governed at local level by a parish meeting. A merger with East Chiltington parish council has been suggested although no formal plans have been made; the next level of government is Lewes District Council. The District council supplies services such as refuse collection, planning consent, leisure amenities and council tax collection. St John Without is covered by the Plumpton, East Chiltington and St John ward which returns a single seat. In the May 2007 election, a councillor from the local Liberal Democrat party was elected.
St John Without lies within the Chailey ward for the next tier of government, East Sussex County Council. The ward includes Chailey, East Chiltington, Plumpton, Streat and Wivelsfield; the County Council provides services such as roads and transport, social services and trading standards. The UK Parliament constituency for St John Without is Lewes. At European level, St John Without is represented by the South-East England constituency, which holds ten seats in the European Parliament. Clayton to Offham Escarpment is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, which stretches from Hassocks in the west and passes through many parishes including St John Without, to Lewes in the east; the site is of biological importance due to its rare chalk grassland habitat along with its woodland and scrub. Ashcombe Bottom is a wooded area in the south of the parish, which forms part of the National Trust Blackcap reserve; the reserve makes up a section of the Clayton to Offham Escarpment SSSI
Green Party of England and Wales
The Green Party of England and Wales is a green, left-wing political party in England and Wales. Headquartered in London, since September 2018, its co-leaders are Jonathan Bartley; the Green Party has one representative in the House of Commons, one in the House of Lords, three in the European Parliament. In addition, it has various councillors in UK local government and two members of the London Assembly; the party's ideology combines environmentalism with left-wing economic policies, including well-funded, locally controlled public services within the confines of a steady state economy, it supports proportional representation. It takes a progressive approach to social policies such as civil liberties, animal rights, LGBT rights and drug policy reform; the party believes in nonviolence, basic income, a living wage, democratic participation. The party comprises various regional divisions, including the semi-autonomous Wales Green Party. Internationally, the party is affiliated to the European Green Party.
The Green Party of England and Wales was established in 1990 alongside the Scottish Green Party and the Green Party in Northern Ireland through the division of the pre-existing Green Party, a group, established as the PEOPLE Party in 1973. Experiencing centralising reforms spearheaded by the Green 2000 group in the early 1990s, the party sought to emphasise growth in local governance, doing so throughout the 1990s. In 2010, the party gained its first MP in former leader Caroline Lucas, who represents the constituency of Brighton Pavilion; the Green Party of England and Wales has its origins in the PEOPLE Party, founded in Coventry, Warwickshire, in February 1972. PEOPLE was renamed The Ecology Party in 1975, in 1985 changed again to the Green Party. In 1989 the party's Scottish branch split to establish the independent Scottish Green Party, with an independent Green Party in Northern Ireland developing shortly after, leaving those branches in England and Wales to form their own party; the Green Party of England and Wales is registered with the Electoral Commission as the Green Party.
In the 1989 European Parliament elections, the Green Party of England and Wales polled 15% of the vote with 2.3 million votes, the best performance of a Green party in a nationwide election. This gave it the third largest share of the vote after the Conservative and Labour parties, although because of the first-past-the-post voting system it failed to gain a Member of the European Parliament; this success has been attributed to both the increased respectability of environmentalism and the effects of the development boom in southern England in the late 1980s. Seeking to capitalise on the Greens' success in the EP elections, a group named Green 2000 was established in July 1990, arguing for an internal reorganisation of the party in order to develop it into an effective electoral force capable of securing seats in the House of Commons, its proposed reforms included a more centralised structure, the replacement of the existing party council with a smaller party executive, the establishment of delegate voting at party conferences.
Many party members opposed the reforms, believing that they would undermine the internal party democracy, amid the arguments various key members resigned or were dismissed from the Greens. Although Green 2000 proposals were defeated at the party's 1990 conference, they were overwhelmingly carried at their 1991 conference, resulting in an internal restructuring of the party. Between the end of 1990 and mid-1992, the party lost over half its members, with those polled indicating that frustration over a lack of clear and effective party leadership was a major reason in their decision; the party fielded more candidates than it had done before in the 1992 general election but was deemed to have performed poorly. In 1993, the party adopted its "Basis for Renewal" program in an attempt to bring together conflicting factions and thus save the party from bankruptcy and potential demise; the party sought to escape their reputation as an environmentalist single-issue party by placing greater emphasis on social policies.
Recognising their poor performance in the 1992 national elections, the party decided to focus on gaining support in local elections, targeting wards where there was a pre-existing support base of Green activists. In 1993, future party leader and MP Lucas gained a seat on Oxfordshire County Council, with other gains following in the 1995 and 1996 local elections; the Greens sought to build alliances with other parties in the hope of gaining representation at the parliamentary level. In Wales, the Greens endorsed Plaid Cymru candidate Cynog Dafis in the 1992 general election, having worked with him on a number of environmental initiatives. For the 1997 general election, the Ceredigion branch of the Greens endorsed Dafis as a joint Plaid Cymru/Green candidate, but this generated controversy with the party, with critics believing it improper to build an alliance with a party that did not share all of the Greens' views. In April 1995 the Green National Executive ruled that the party should withdraw from this alliance due to ideological differences.
As the Labour Party shifted to the political centre under the leadership of Tony Blair and his New Labour project, the Greens sought to gain the support of the party's dissafected leftists. During the 1999 European Parliament elections, the first to be held in the UK using proportional representation, the Greens gained their first Members of the European Parliament and Jean Lambert. At the inaugural London Assembly Elections in 2000, the party gained 11% of the vote and returned three Assembly Members, althoug
Ringmer is a village and civil parish in the Lewes District of East Sussex, England. The village is located 3 miles east of Lewes. Other small settlements in the parish include Upper Wellingham, Ashton Green, Broyle Side, Little Norlington and Shortgate. Ringmer is one of the largest villages in the south of England. There has been human habitation since at least Roman times; the village church, dedicated to St Mary, was built in the 13th century. One of its rectors, named to the living in 1533, was William Levett, named in the same year as rector of Buxted, one of the most improbable figures in English ecclesiastical history. Ringmer has two schools, Ringmer Primary School for ages 4–11 and Ringmer Community College for students aged 11–18. Ringmer Community College houses the local swimming pool, run by Wave Leisure; the symbol of Ringmer is a tortoise named Timothy, after the female tortoise that the naturalist Gilbert White carried back to Selborne in Hampshire in 1780. White's aunt Rebecca Snooke lived in Delves House.
Timothy died in 1794, a year after Gilbert White. Ringmer is part of the electoral ward called Ouse Ringmer; the population of this ward at the 2011 census was 6,422. Ringmer Mill stood for centuries on Mill Plain overlooking Ringmer; this post mill was in operation until 1921 but collapsed in 1925 leaving the mill post, on which the body of the mill rotated, remaining as a local landmark. Plashett Park Wood is a Site of Special Scientific Interest in the parish, it is a site of biological importance as an area of ancient woodland. Plashett Wood and the adjolining Plashett Park Farm provide habitats for a wide variety of breeding birds and bats, plus a number of rarer invertebrates and flora. Ringmer has a Non-League football club AFC Ringmer. James Callaghan, British Prime Minister, his wife Audrey Callaghan bought Upper Clayhill Farm, Ringmer, in 1967, they moved there permanently after Callaghan's election defeat in 1979. H. Dormer Legge, RAF and Army officer and philatelist, born in Ringmer John Harvard, after whom Harvard University is named, married in 1636 Ann Sadler, daughter of the Rev John Sadler, Vicar of Ringmer 1626-1640.
Wendy James, lead singer of Transvision Vamp and Racine Gideon Mantell, pioneer geologist & Palaeontologist, was a Lewes surgeon who held contracts to serve the poor of Ringmer and the Royal Horse Artillery hospital at Ringmer barracks. Frederick Parris and Test Match umpire William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania, married Gulielma Springett, a member of the Springett family of Broyle Place, Ringmer. On 3 December 2006 the Festival Fireworks factory, located in the parish, near Shortgate, caught fire detonating the display pyrotechnics stored on the site. Successive explosions followed for more than eight hours. Sussex Police, which described it as "a serious incident", established a 200 metres exclusion zone around the factory. Television pictures showed a large fireball at the centre of the blaze. Two members of Sussex fire services died and nine fire service workers were injured along with two members of the public and a police officer. Hundreds of rockets continued to explode more than five hours after the initial blasts.
Media related to Ringmer at Wikimedia Commons
East Chiltington is a village and civil parish in the Lewes District of East Sussex, England. It is centred four miles south-east of Burgess Hill and five miles north-west of Lewes, it is a strip parish of 3.76 square miles, stretching northward from the crest of the South Downs. The village church is 13th century in origin. Near the church a pub, The Jolly Sportsman stands beside a road upon the line of the Roman Sussex Greensand Way. East Chiltington is governed at the local level by East Chiltington Parish Council which consists of seven councillors meeting every two months; the parish council represents the parish on matters governed at County level. The May 2015 election was contested by eight candidates; the next level of government is Lewes District Council. The District council supplies services such as refuse collection, planning consent, leisure amenities and council tax collection. East Chiltington is covered by the Plumpton, East Chiltington and St John ward which returns a single seat.
In the May 2015 election, Sarah Osbourne, a councillor from the local Liberal Democrat party was elected. East Chiltington lies within the Chailey ward for the next tier of government, East Sussex County Council; the ward includes Chailey, Ditchling, St John Without, Plumpton, Streat and Wivelsfield. The County Council provides services such as roads and transport, social services and trading standards; the county councilor is the Conservative Jim Sheppard. The UK Parliament constituency for East Chiltington is Lewes; the Conservative Maria Caulfield, a local nurse, has been serving as the constituency MP since 2015 when she defeated the incumbent Liberal Democrat Norman Baker At European level, East Chiltington is represented by the South-East region, which holds ten seats in the European Parliament. The June 2004 election returned four Conservatives, two Liberal Democrats, two UK Independence, one Labour and one Green, none of whom live in East Sussex. Clayton to Offham Escarpment is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, which stretches from Hassocks in the west and passes through many parishes including East Chiltington, to Lewes in the east.
The site is of biological importance due to its rare chalk grassland habitat along with its woodland and scrub. Blackcap is a 206 metres high hill, part of the Clayton to Offham Escarpment, lies within the parish, it forms part of the National Trust Blackcap nature reserve
Glynde and Beddingham
Glynde and Beddingham is an amalgam of two civil parishes in the Lewes district of East Sussex. On a local level and Beddingham is governed by Glynde and Beddingham Parish Council. Council meetings are held every two months in the Beddingham Reading Room, their responsibilities include footpaths, street lighting and minor planning applications. The Parish Council has seven seats. All but one seat were filled in the 2015 election; the vacancy was filled in 2015 by co-option. The next level of government is the District Council; the parish of Glynde and Beddingham lies within the Ouse Valley and Ringmer ward of Lewes District Council which returns three seats to the council. The election in May 2015 elected two conservative, Paul Gander and Richard Turner, one Liberal Democrat, Peter Gardiner. East Sussex County Council is the next tier of government, for which Glynde and Beddingham is within the Ouse Valley East division, with responsibility for Education, Social Services, Civil Registration, Trading Standards and Transport.
Elections for the County Council are held every four years. In 2013, Peter Charlton was elected to represent the Division; the UK Parliament constituency for Glynde and Beddingham is Lewes. Conservative, Maria Caulfield, was elected as Member of Parliament for Lewes in May 2015 replacing Liberal Democrat Norman Baker, MP since 1997. For European Parliamentary elections and Beddingham is in the South East England European Constituency, represented by ten Members of the European Parliament; the June 2014 election returned four United Kingdom Independence Party, three Conservative Party, one Liberal Democrat Party, One Green Party, one Labour Party MEPs. There are five Sites of Special Scientific Interest within the parish. Firle Escarpment, which extends into the neighbouring parish of Firle. Another site within the parish is Asham Quarry, of geological interest due to its stratigraphy of Devensian and Flandrian deposits. Southerham Grey Pit and Southerham Machine Bottom Pit are two more SSSIs of geological interest within the parish.
These sites are disused chalk pits. The final SSSI is Lewes Downs, a site of biological interest, an isolated area of the South Downs. Within the parish, overlooking the village of Glynde, is Mount Caburn, a 480 foot isolated peak on top of which sits an Iron Age hill fort