WYRE FOREST - prediction and resul No Overall Control
The Conservative need four seats to win this Worcestershire local authority but the politics of Wyre Valley is complicated by the existence of an Independent party set up to prevent the closure of the accident and emergency ward at Kidderminster hospital which helped to elect Richard Taylor as the Independent MP in 2001.
The Conservatives defeated him in 2010 but the local party is still there and, as Independent Community and Health Concern, has turned itself into a normal residents’ group. With Labour, the Conservative and the ICHC each getting about a third of the vote in many wards, results are highly unpredictable.
UKIP also did pretty well in the county elections with a victory in Stourport. To make things even more confusing there is still a separate Liberal Party which calls itself Liberal and Independent.
Labour should win Habberley and Blakebrook from the Conservatives and Areley Kings from the ICHC but may even lose Greenhill to the ICHC as they did in 2012. They and the ICHC are close in Broadwaters.
Labour came very close to the Conservatives in Oldington and Foley Park in 2012 but may not do any better this time. Lickenhill, Milton and Wribbenhall see battles between the Conservatives and ICHC, and any of the three parties could win Franche.
In Aggborough and Spennells either the ICHC or an actual independent could win the ward from the Conservatives. With all these uncertainties there is little prospect of the Conservatives taking control of the council. Kidderminster hospital never regained its accident and emergency and was even under threat of complete closure in 2012.