Labour wins overall majority on Glasgow City Council

Scottish Labour Leader Johann Lamont and Councillor Gordon Matheson Scottish Labour Leader Johann Lamont congratulates previous - and expected to be next - Glasgow City Council leader Gordon Matheson

Labour has held on to its Scottish stronghold of Glasgow after comfortably seeing off the challenge of the SNP in the local council elections.

The party secured 44 of the total 79 seats, compared to the SNP's 27.

The Greens held their five seats and the Conservatives their one. The Lib Dems claimed one seat - down four. An Independent won the remaining seat.

Elsewhere across the west of Scotland, Labour and the SNP polled way ahead of the Lib Dems and Conservatives.

Labour is heralding the result in Glasgow as the start of a national fightback following the SNP's landslide victory at last year's Holyrood elections.

Glasgow First

Alex Salmond's party had made confident noises about taking outright control of Labour's Scottish powerbase.

That seemed very possible after several Labour councillors, disaffected at being deselected, left the party and the city's ruling Labour Group in the months before polling day.

With some of them standing under the banner of Glasgow First, Labour feared its vote could be split, allowing the SNP to end its 40-year grip on power.

Gail and Tommy Sheridan Gail Sheridan failed in her bid to be elected in Cardonald and Craigton

When the votes were counted, however, Glasgow First only returned one councillor - Stephen Dornan in Govan - and Labour held on comfortably elsewhere as the SNP challenge failed to materialise.

Labour claimed 44 seats - up five on its immediate pre-election position. The SNP won 27 seats - up seven - but well short of the total needed to take the council from Labour.

Gordon Matheson, former - and expected to be next - city council leader, said the results had been "extraordinarily bad for the SNP" and claimed "their juggernaut has rolled into a ditch".

"They were the party that made big predictions that they would sweep Labour from power. The people of Glasgow have had other ideas," he said.

The other headline from Thursday's vote was the resilience of the Green vote in Glasgow - the party held on to its five council seats - and the demise of the Lib Dems who lost four seats, leaving them with just one councillor.

The Conservatives retained one councillor, with one seat also going to an Independent.

One notable name not to be voted in was Gail Sheridan, wife of former MSP Tommy Sheridan, who stood for his Solidarity party in the Cardonald and Craigton ward.

Afterwards she said: "I was told I missed out very narrowly, so I'm very pleased with fifth place.

"The two big parties are taking the vote today. I beat the Tories, the Liberals and Green Party."

The outcomes for other councils across the west of Scotland are listed below.

ARGYLL AND BUTE

The SNP remained the single largest party, taking 12 seats - up two from 2007.

There were 13 Independents elected - down three, four Conservatives - up one and four Liberal Democrats - down three.

Voting in Dunoon will take place on Thursday 10 May. The council, like before, remains in no overall control.

EAST AYRSHIRE

The SNP squeezed ahead of Labour to become the council's single biggest party, taking 15 seats - one up, with Labour down one on 14 seats.

The Conservatives secured two seats - down one, with the remaining seat being taken by an Independent.

These results mean that the council remains in no overall control.

NORTH AYRSHIRE

There was even better news for the SNP in North Ayrshire, where the party won an additional four seats, taking its tally to 14.

Labour dropped back one to 11, as did the Conservatives who were left with one seat. Independents took the other six seats, meaning that the council stays in no overall control.

SOUTH AYRSHIRE

The Conservatives remained the largest single party with 10 seats - down two.

Labour gained three seats, taking nine in total, and were joined in second place by the SNP, also on nine seats - down one.

The remaining two seats were taken by Independents, meaning the council stays in no overall control.

INVERCLYDE

Labour was again the largest party, taking 10 of the 20 seats available - up two from its pre-election tally.

The SNP took six seats - up one, while the Lib Dems won two seats - down one. The remaining seats went to a Conservative and Independent.

Despite Labour increasing its seats, Inverclyde Council remains in no overall control.

RENFREWSHIRE

Labour gained three seats, to win overall control with a total of 22.

The SNP lost two seats, securing 15. The Liberal Democrats took one seat but lost two. The Conservatives remained unchanged on one seat, while the remaining seat was taken by an Independent.

EAST RENFREWSHIRE

Labour took over from the Conservatives as the largest party, winning eight seats - up two.

The Conservatives lost one seat, dropping back to six. The SNP gained one seat, winning four in total. The number of seats held by Independents is now two - down one.

The results mean the council remains in no overall control.

EAST DUNBARTONSHIRE

There was a delay in counting following technical problems with the electronic ballot-counting machines.

When the results came in Labour and the SNP were deadlocked on eight seats each - although Labour gained two seats with the SNP remaining unchanged.

The Lib Dems remained unchanged on three seats, as did the number of Independents who also took three seats. The Conservatives were the main losers on two seats - down two.

The council remains in no overall control.

WEST DUNBARTONSHIRE

Labour gained an outright majority on the council which was previously in no overall control.

Labour added four seats to reach a total of 12. The main losers were the SNP, which took six seats - down three.

The other seats went to Independents, who managed three seats between them and the Scottish Socialist Party, which held on to its seat.

NORTH LANARKSHIRE

Labour held on to its strong majority, taking 41 seats - up one.

The SNP added five new seats to take its tally to 26, with the Conservatives and Lib Dems losing both of their solitary seats. There are also three Independents - down four.

An investigation is under way, however, after more than 2,000 votes (about 2%) were rejected. This followed postal votes being sent out with the wrong instructions. A council spokesman claimed those instructions made no difference to the rejected votes.

SOUTH LANARKSHIRE

Despite adding news seats, the SNP was unable to dislodge Labour as the single biggest party. The council, however, remains in no overall control.

Labour won 33 seats - up one, while the SNP gained four to reach a total of 28.

The Conservatives took three seats but lost four, the Lib Dems secured one and lost one and the remaining two seats went to Independents.

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