Labour increases Islington Council majority after storming to victory in two by-elections

Kaya Makarau-Schwartz

Kaya Makarau-Schwartz - Credit: Archant

Labour has increased its majority on Islington Council after sweeping to victory in two by-elections yesterday.

Kat Fletcher

Kat Fletcher - Credit: Archant

Kaya Makarau-Schwartz topped the poll in Junction ward and her fellow Labour candidate Kat Fletcher won in St George’s.

Both secured well over half of the votes in their wards, while Labour has increased its presence on the council with 36 councillors, up from 35. The remaining 12 seats are held by the Liberal Democrats.

Cllr Makarau-Schwartz replaces Arthur Graves, who was elected as a Liberal Democrat but quit the party in 2012 to become an independent. Cllr Makarau-Schwartz lives in Archway and works for a mental health charity.

Pub landlord Kat Fletcher takes over from Labour’s Jessica Asato, who stood down to contest a parliamentary seat in Norwich. Cllr Fletcher used to run the Tufnell Park Tavern in Tufnell Park Road, Tufnell Park, and is now in charge of The Lansdowne in Primrose Hill.

Junction ward saw a turnout of 24 per cent with 2,180 of the 9,007-strong electorate casting their ballots. Cllr Makarau-Schwartz pulled in 62 per cent, with 1,343 votes. Mick Holloway of the Green Party came a distant second with 381.

Cllr Fletcher won 71 per cent in St George’s, gaining 1,698 of the 2,391 votes. The turnout saw 26 per cent of the 9,239 eligible residents cast their votes. The Liberal Democrats were far behind in second, with Julian Gregory winning 371.