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Ansdell By-Election Result

Ansdell By-Election ResultThe result of this By-Election was never really going to be in any serious doubt.

Ansdell has had a lot of public money spent on it in recent years, and very obvious improvements have been made to its shopping centre environment, so the Conservatives who did it are well thought of - and that was always going to rub off onto their chosen candidate - whoever they were.

But then, when you consider that their chosen candidate - Chris Dixon - was also more or less a household name for anyone who has routinely read the 'Express' (he's the former News Editor) for the last few years, and he now works locally on behalf of Mark Menzies MP in communications and casework, then it was always really going to be his election to lose.

Having your name known in the area in which you are standing is always a big advantage. If any chemists, newsagents, publicans, and most busy independent shopkeepers decide to stand for election, they all begin with a flying start - we call it the beans effect - If someone says 'beans' to you, the first thing you think of is Heinz. - the well known brand leader.

That's because (at least for those who don't vote simply by the party name)  the typical decision-making thought process for folk entering a polling booth and seeing the candidate list is:

  1. Do I know any of these folk on the voting slip?
  2. If not, did any of them call or give me a leaflet?
  3. If not, have I heard of any of them?
  4. If not, which name do I like the sound of?

And the 'X' goes in the box with the first "Yes" answer.

Mr Dixon was quite well known, and was also very assiduous getting election leaflets and communications out.

We've seen four different ones ourselves, and we know of some in his ward who claim to have had more than six Conservative communications about the election.

That's an enormous number of leaflets to have delivered.

The 'usual' options for leaflet delivery are:

  1. A few have no leaflets at all (typically a 'paper candidate' hoping to get somewhere just on the party name)
  2. Some do one leaflet during the campaign period ('old' way of doing it)
  3. Many do two leaflets (one early, and a second just before polling day as a reminder, and to counteract what any of 'the opposition' might have said about you)
  4. A few will do three leaflets (someone who' is really keen, with a lot of helpers)

Putting out more three leaflets suggests either an overwhelming and belt and braces approach, or someone who is not confident about winning. In this case we think it will probably have been the overwhelming reason.

The result of all that effort was:

 2018 Borough Council By-Election:  ANSDELL WARD 
715Dixon Chris Conservative.
272Nash Gareth. Labour
Electorate 3371 . Ballots Issued 995 ,  Spoilt /Rejected 8.   Turnout 30%

Mr Nash seemed to us to be a worthy candidate, but Mr Dixon was the clear winner and we're happy to offer congratulations, and we wish him well.

So - soon to be sworn in as - Councillor Chris Dixon, he will likely be taking his place on one or two of Fylde's committees and getting into the swing of how the Council operates.  (Although from his time at the Express he will have a pretty good idea already).

Knowing him a little, we suspect he will be an active Councillor, and  - as all Conservatives seem to be these days - a loyal party and group member. But we would not be surprised if he makes his arguments forcefully within the Conservative group, even if we don't hear much from him in public at the start.

Dated:  2 August 2018



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