The 1896 United Kingdom local elections took place in late 1896 for municipal councils (including Urban Districts), as well as Rural districts. Municipal elections were held across England and Wales on Monday 2 November, with Scotland holding municipal elections the following day. Municipal elections in Ireland took place later that month, on Wednesday 25 November.

The English and Welsh election saw the main parties making inroads into municipal politics, although many contests took place on non-party political lines, with little reference to the candidates party affiliation. Across England and Wales Liberals gained 56 seats, Conservatives 32, Liberal Unionists 1, Independents 5, and Labour 3.[1][2]

In Scotland the newly enlarged Glasgow Corporation saw a group of Progressive candidates, known as the Progressive Union, become the largest force on the council.[3][4]

The Irish elections, particularly in Dublin, saw the ongoing battle between rival factions of Irish nationalists; the Redmondites and supporters of John Dillon and the Irish National Federation.[5]


Municipal elections

Council Previous control Result
Birkenhead Conservative Conservative
Birmingham No overall control No overall control
Bolton Conservative Conservative
Bradford No overall control No overall control
Cardiff No overall control No overall control
Edinburgh No overall control Unionist
Glasgow Independent Progressive
Leeds Conservative Conservative
Leicester Liberal Liberal
Liverpool Conservative Conservative
Plymouth Liberal Liberal
Sheffield No overall control No overall control


District council elections

Council Previous control Result
Aberdare Independent Independent