Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Local By-Election Preview for June 16th 2011 (Wales)

When the eight Welsh counties and thirty two district councils in Wales were re arranged into twenty two unitary authorities back in 1995, several of the councils did not like the names they were given. My own council was named Cardiganshire by John Redwood and the day after the elections for the shadow authority the council voted to change the name to Ceredigion and they were not the only one to do so (and by a strange quirk two of them have local by-elections this week)

The old county of Gwynedd was split into three unitary authorities. These were called Anglesey, Caernarfonshire and Meirionethshire and Aberconwy and Colwyn. When the councils first met, all three opted to change their names. Anglesey adopted the new name with a slight addition (adding the word "Isle" to the English name and translating it to "Ynys Môn" for the Welsh). Aberconwy and Colwyn decided that they should be called just plain old "Conwy" and as Caernarfonshire and Meirionethshire was so much of a mouthful to trip up even David Dimbleby on Local Election Night in 1995, they decided to change the name back to "Gwynedd" which seeing as it was 75% of the old Gwynedd made sense.

Arllechwedd (and yes, I am not even going to try and pronounce that!) has been that rather rare ward (in that it does not appear to have followed the percieved trend). Located in Arfon constituency, you would expect it to have elected either a Labour or Plaid Cymru councillor. In fact in the 2004 elections, it voted Lib Dem (albeit by 22 votes), and in 2008, Cllr. John Jones held on (this time by 31 votes). In the forthcoming by-election, the voters of Arllechwedd are going to be spoilt for choice as not only do they have a Lib Dem and Plaid candidate to choose from (but a Conservative and Labour candidate as well!)

Candidates duly nominated for Arllechwedd by-election
Edmond Douglas-Pennant (Liberal Democrats)
David Edwards (Labour)
Jennie Lewis (Conservative)
Dafydd Meurig (Plaid Cymru)

The second by-election this week is in Conwy (and is again in a ward that I am not even going to try and pronounce) where the electors of Uwchaled will be asked to elect a new councillor. In 2004, the ward elected a Plaid Cymru councillor and in 2008 was re-elected unopposed, so whoever the people of the ward choose it will be a GAIN

Candidates duly nominated for Uwchaled by-election
Renny Crossley (Conservatives)
Pete Groudd (Independent)


  1. It's pronounced "Arllechwedd" - quite easy really :)

  2. You say 'Arllechwedd', I say 'Arllechwedd'.