Harrow on the Hill ward is rather odd. Half of it is regular Harrow suburbia, the remainder the posh bit on the Hill, private roads, mansions etc. So one would expect the latter half to lean more to the Conservatives, but the Tories have a real issue in that it is a long trek for their voters to the polling station. This fact might suppress their turnout. 'Labour' PDs have much more convenient stations!
Judging by the names of voters who signed the nomination papers, Harrow First made a real push to pick up the hefty Tamil vote in this ward. But you can't win an election in Harrow without sufficient appeal to a broad range of the many minorities that is now Harrow's population.
Labour were aided by help pouring in from all over the place. I hear of one volunteer up from Brighton for the day. Also Glen Hearnden was by all accounts an excellent candidate with a relaxed and likeable doorstep manner.
The Lib Dems do indeed have a problem in Harrow. They have never really recovered from the 2002 nomination paper cock-up. I think Erlend is right and they may retrench into a couple of their better wards, such as Rayners Lane and Harrow Weald.
I think it very unlikely given the current hard line Tory Group leadership that there will be a rapprochement between them and Eileen Kinnear. The reasons for her expulsion from the Tory Group before the 2010 election continue to be shrouded in mystery.
We wait to see what fall-out there is from the allegations of intimidation. Ironically, the alleged offences took place directly opposite Harrow Police Station. Not the best place to try dodgy tactics!
I am very perturbed that the count was delayed to 2pm. Sam Buckley in his book Banana Republic UK? makes a very strong case that votes should be counted without undue delay to minimise the chance of ballot box tampering. I have to agree: to help the transparency of the process Harrow should return to counting on the night.
Hereford City Council (Tupsley ward) - It's OUR County (Herefordshire) 1057, Con 300, Lib Dem 273 - IOC hold Hemsworth Town Council (Kinsley ward) - Lab 170, Independent 76 - Lab gain from Independent - new council: Lab 12, Independent 3