Labour scored a narrow win in the Thornton ward by election for Lambeth council yesterday (11 April).
On a very low turnout of 25.5%, the party’s Nanda Manley-Browne, who grew up in Brixton, beat the Lib Dems’ Mathew Bryant into second place by 998 to 979 votes – a majority of just 19. Third-placed Green candidate Adrian Audley got 171 votes and Conservative Martin Read 166.
The by election in the ward that contains much of the Clapham Park estate was caused by the resignation of former Lambeth council leader Lib Peck to take up an all-London role tacking youth violence.
UKIP’s John Plum came last with 39 votes, below Leila Fazal of the locally based Women’s Equality Party with 53 votes.
Local Labour parties had recently urged members to drop other activity to campaign in the by election and local Greater London Authority member Florence Eshalomi also appealed for help to get the Labour vote out.
“I have known Nanda for over 29 years as we both attended St Helen’s primary school and grew up in the same part of Brixton,” she said.
“I have worked locally and nationally to ensure that more BAME (Black and minority ethnic) working-class women get involved in politics and, although we must never allow ourselves to become complacent, I am proud that we have a strong track record of supporting local working class BAME women in Lambeth.”