Oxfordshire consists of four District Councils, Oxford City Council and an overarching County Council (up for election in 2025 and currently controlled by a “Progressive Alliance” composed of LibDems (21), Labour (16) and Greens (3).

There is no election this year in Oxford City, both West Oxfordshire and Cherwell have 1/3 of the Council up for election and in Vale of White Horse and South Oxfordshire the entire Council is up for election. It is worth remembering that VWHDC and SODC is effectively functioning as one Council, with one set of officers (led by the very charismatic and extremely competent CEO Mark Stone).

We’re taking a quick look at the four Councils in turn to give you an idea of what might happen. This helps us to prepare for engagement after 4 May. You need to have an idea of who you are likely to deal with and what their likely views might be. The one to really watch is Cherwell.

  1. Oxford City – No election in 2023
  2. Cherwell– Conservative – Likely NOC with multi-party coalition administration
    • 1/3 of council up for election
      Conservative only have a majority of two with a large number of defences up for election this year (9 in total).
    • Recent trends suggesting increasing Conservatives losses.
    • The ‘Progressive Oxfordshire’ alliance was established in 2022 of the Liberal Democrats, Greens and Independents – this could be a prelude for a coalition agreement if the Conservatives lose overall control. This would be very similar to the “Progressive Alliance” running the County Council so we know this is something that works in Oxfordshire.
  1. South Oxfordshire – NOC Lib Dem/Green coalition – Lib Dem Gain/continued Lib Dem/Green coalition
    • Full election of council this year.
    • In 2019, Lib Dems were close seconds in nearly all Conservative held seats and will likely gain many of these seats this year.
  1. Vale of White Horse – Lib Dem – Lib Dem hold
    • Full election of council this year
    • The last election 2019 saw a near total wipeout of the Conservatives with the election of 31 Liberal Democrat councillors, out of a total of 38 seats.
    • Expected Liberal Democrats to hold control of this council with a potentially increased majority.
  1. West Oxfordshire – NOC Lib Dem/Labour/Green coalition – NOC hold
    • 1/3 of council up for election
    • Current rainbow coalition of Liberal Democrats, Labour and Greens – Conservatives are the current largest party.
    • Expect to see Conservative losses, but not enough to provide any one party with a majority on the Council – likely that coalition agreement will continue.

If you want to have a more in-depth discussion about it or a breakdown of the “runners and riders” in any of these Councils, contact either henry@theccp.net or morgan@theccp.net or call 020 4538 7200