Five things to look out for in Sheffield’s local election this year

Local elections can be seen as less important than the fire and fury of Westminster elections. Especially in a city like Sheffield which has traditionally been dominated by the Labour party, local elections can seem like going going through the motions.

However, 2019 is set to shake things up and this is why you should pay attention:

1. City Ward

The City ward covers the city centre, Highfield and Kelham Island. In last year’s election, the Green party candidate Martin Phipps won his seat by just 16 votes over his Labour party rival.

With environmental issues dominating the national headlines, it will be interesting to see if this turns into more support for the Green party, or whether Labour can claim back the seat.

2. Mosborough ward

This ward includes Mosborough village, Waterthorpe, Westfield, as well as the rural area of Plumbley, and is another close ward to watch during this local election.

The Liberal Democrats won the seat last time out with a big swing – it will be interesting to see if this swing will hold.

3. UKIP

Many thought that in the wake of Brexit, the UKIP party was dissolve without purpose.

However, in this round of local elections UKIP are again fielding 22 candidates, up from only six candidates last year.

4. Brexit

While local council candidates will try and tell you that local issues will decide local elections, there’s no escaping Brexit as the dominant political force in society right now.

With so much disenchantment with the Brexit process, expect it to have a large impact on the local election result.

5. Change UK?

Change UK is the new party on the block, formed by defector MPs from Labour and Conservative – including Stocksbridge and Penistone MP Angela Smith. They, however, are not putting any candidates forward in Sheffield’s local elections.

This may come as some surprise with Angela Smith’s husband Steve Wilson running in East Ecclesfield. However, he has put himself forward as an independent candidate.

He told The Yorkshire Post: “I put my name forward for local elections as a completely independent candidate with no connection to Change UK at all.”