Labour gained 231 seats to get to 576. All other major parties lost. Plaid lost 41 to fall to 158 seats, Tories fell 61 to 105 and the poor Lib Dems are down 66 to 71 seats.
On a technical point we don’t use PR and much of urban Wales has multi member first past the post wards. Under this system it’s common for a ward to switch from say 3 Plaid members to 3 Labour members. This system amplifies swings I think. (Not an excuse – it’s worked to Plaid’s benefit in the past).
For instance in Cardiff Grangetown switched from 3 Lib Dems to 3 Labour, Plasnewydd from 4 Lib Dems to 4 Labour and Whitchurch from 4 Tories to 4 Labour. That’s 11 of Labour’s 33 gains in Cardiff there.
Any comfort for Plaid? Well, we came second with less losses than the others, remained fairly static in our stronger rural areas (Lost a seat in Ceredigion, a couple in Carmarthenshire and 3 in Gwynedd) and won every seat in the three wards of Carmarthen Town. Whilst we got battered in Caerffili and Rhondda Cynon Taf we were not wiped out, retaining a significant presence 0n both authorities.
You have to applaud Labour however. Admittedly the last election (2007) was a disaster for them but this result is the best in local government since this set up was introduced in 1996.
Why? – well we’ve voted Labour for 90 years and
2) Our Education System is failing and
3) We are not controlling our charities.