Kent is a large County with 13 Councils. 12 of them districts and one (Medway) as a unitary. In this post we examine 1 – 6 on the map.

Almost all the Councillors are up for election with the exception of the County Council and Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells where 1/3 of the councillors are up for election.

We estimate that up to 8 of the councils could change from Tory control to No Overall Control. This of course could see many coalitions and Tories going into opposition.

There is no doubt that Kent will have a turbulent election (see what I did there… Henry II and Thomas Beckett)

The one exception in Dover where we think the Governments migration policy might actually shore up the Tory vote enough to retain control.

  1. Sevenoaks – Con – Con HOLD
    • Full council up for election
    • We’re predicting another Conservative majority in Sevenoaks, with a slighter larger opposition.
  1. Dartford – CON – Likely NOC Gain/Potential LAB GAIN
    • Full council up for election
    • Dartford is not an easy Council to predict, a long held Conservative area but there is a definite chance this year that Labour could surge upwards and take control of the council in a majority. Will be an interesting council to watch out for.
  1. Gravesham – Lab – Lab HOLD
    • Full council up for election
    • Expect to see further gains by Labour here in May, they currently hold a majority of one seat and we expect that to increase to a comfortable majority.
  1. Tonbridge and Malling – Con – Con HOLD
    • Full council up for election
    • A strongly held Conservative area likely to return a Conservative majority in May. However, we are predicting the Conservative majority will be reduced.
  1. Medway – Con – NOC GAIN
    • Unitary authority
    • Full council up for election
    • Labour have a significant gap to achieve to secure a majority, but we’re predicting that this Council will fall into No Overall Control where Labour could be the largest party.
  1. Maidstone – Con – NOC GAIN
    • 1/3 of Council up for election
    • The Conservative took majority control of Maidstone in 2021 after a long period of No Overall Control where the Liberal Democrats held the leadership of the council. We’re predicting that losses by the Conservative will result in a NOC and a coalition between opposition parties and independents could be formed.
  1. Tunbridge Wells – NOC – NOC HOLD
    • 1/3 of Council up for election
    • Over the past few years there has been a marked decline in support for the Conservatives, which has resulted in NOC since 2021. The Lib Dems, Labour and Tunbridge Wells Alliance – we’re predicting that Tunbridge Wells will remain in NOC and the coalition will continue.
  1. Swale – NOC – NOC HOLD
    • Full council up for election
    • Swales operates on a committee system, instead of Leader and Cabinet, and the NOC nature of the council has brought together 5 political groups (Labour, Swale Independents, Independents, Lib Dems and Greens) into an administration group.
    • We’re predicting the NOC to remain and another agreement between similar parties to be agreed.
  1. Ashford – CON – NOC GAIN
    • Full council up for election
    • We’re predicting that the Ashford Independents and Labour Party will make gains from the Conservatives that will deliver an NOC – and a potential coalition agreement could be reached.
  1. City of Canterbury – CON – NOC GAIN
    • Full council up for election
    • We predict that the Conservatives are going to lose their majority but remain the largest party on the Council. This could open an opportunity for Labour and the Lib Dems to form a coalition, if they are able to reach an agreement.
  1. Folkestone and Hythe – NOC – NOC HOLD
    • Full council up for election
    • This council is incredibly difficult to predict. It is a very diverse Council politically, with its current ruling administration consisting of the Conservatives, Greens, Lib Dems and Independents. It is also one of the few authorities where UKIP still have councillors.
    • We predict that this council will remain in NOC – but we cannot predict how a post-election coalition might be formed.
  1. Thanet – NOC – NOC HOLD/Potential Lab GAIN
    • Full council up for election
    • Currently led by a Conservative minority administration, we’re predicting that this could flip in May to see Labour as the largest group on the Council.
    • Labour also have the potential to take this council as a majority and if they take gains from all other parties, not just the Conservatives, they can easily take this council.
  1. Dover – Con – Con HOLD
    • Full council up for election
    • We predict the Conservative will hold this council.