1973 Reading Borough Council election

7 June 1973 (1973-06-07) 1976 →

46 seats (whole council)
24 seats needed for a majority
  First party Second party Third party
 
Leader Bob Towner Edward Busby Jim Day
Party Labour Conservative Liberal
Seats after 16 16 14
Popular vote 43,929 43,731 31,524
Percentage 36.3 36.2 26.1

The 1973 Reading District Council election was the first election to the reconstituted Reading Borough Council, which changed from being a county borough to a non-metropolitan district under the Local Government Act 1972. At the time of the election it had yet to be decided whether the new district would hold borough status and so contemporary reports describe the election as being to "Reading District Council", although it was subsequently confirmed that the new council would be a borough.

The elections were held on 7 June 1973, in common with other new non-metropolitan district councils in England and Wales. The councillors elected in 1973 were to shadow the outgoing corporation until they formally took over on 1 April 1974. The election left the council with no overall control, with Labour winning most votes by a very narrow margin, but holding the same number of seats (16) as the Conservatives. The Liberals with 14 seats held the balance of power.[1][2]

The Labour leader on the old corporation was Bob Towner and the Conservative leader was Edward Busby. Both led their parties into the elections, but neither man stood for a seat on the new council. After the election, Chris Goodall was appointed Labour group leader, and William Badnall the Conservative group leader. The Liberal group leader remained Jim Day, who had been party leader on the old corporation. A Labour / Liberal administration was eventually formed, with Jim Day being appointed to the council's top political job as chair of the policy committee.[3]

Results

Reading Borough Council Election, 1973
Party Seats Gains Losses Net gain/loss Seats % Votes % Votes +/−
  Labour 16 34.8% 36.3% 43,929
  Conservative 16 34.8% 36.2% 43,731
  Liberal 14 30.4% 26.1% 31,524
  Independent 0 0% 1.5% 1,760

Ward results

The results in each ward were as follows:[4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11]

Abbey Ward (two seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour William George Mander
(Bill Mander)
486
Labour Roger Scaife 447
Conservative Bryan Jones 325
Labour win
Labour win
Battle Ward (two seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Reginald Harry Bristow
(Joe Bristow)
813
Labour Frank Wise 771
Conservative Roger Brown 369
Labour win
Labour win
Castle Ward (three seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Graham Anthony Rush 900
Labour Robert J. Garnett
(Bob Garnett)
840
Labour Antony William Page
(Tony Page)
816
Conservative Eric Gordon Davis 736
Conservative Frederick Llywelyn Pugh
(Fred Pugh)
706
Conservative F. Tim Rose 684
Liberal David Scott 413
Liberal Mary Clarke 372
Liberal Leon D. Summers 366
Labour win
Labour win
Labour win
Caversham Ward (three seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ronald William Jewitt
(Ron Jewitt)
1,127
Conservative George Robinson 1,119
Conservative Michael Francis 1,061
Labour Charles Evans 914
Labour Harry Young 896
Labour Tom Clifton 875
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Christchurch Ward (four seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Fred L. Roberts 1,347
Labour Christopher John Goodall
(Chris Goodall)
1,286
Labour Marian Jeanne Absolom 1,271
Labour William Maurice John Huntley
(John Huntley)
1,262
Conservative Kitty C. Foote 915
Liberal Hester M. Crichton 912
Liberal Elizabeth M. O'Rourke 910
Conservative Patricia Mellows 838
Liberal Richard W. Hellier 800
Conservative Frances A. Spark 766
Labour win
Labour win
Labour win
Labour win
Katesgrove Ward (two seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Harry Wheeler 820
Labour Geoffrey Robert Mander
(Geoff Mander)
738
Conservative Stanley Beamish 441
Independent John Still 317
Labour win
Labour win
Minster Ward (six seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative William Wykeham Edward Badnall 2,342
Conservative Geoffrey Gascoigne Lawrence 2,291
Conservative Simon Christopher Coombs 2,284
Conservative Charles Frederick Sage 2,247
Conservative Joyce A. Talbot 2,247
Conservative Kenneth Loder
(Ken Loder)
2,243
Labour Frances Margaret Nash
(Bunty Nash)
2,140
Labour Leslie Glanville 1,934
Labour John Allen 1,929
Labour Lawrence Brennan 1,898
Labour Robert Mitchell
(Bob Mitchell)
1,896
Labour Daphne A. Dunkason 1,890
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Norcot Ward (six seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Terence James Francis
(Terry Francis)
2,240
Liberal Geoffrey David Salisbury
(Geoff Salisbury)
2,210
Liberal John Freeman 2,195
Liberal Peter Beard 2,162
Liberal Dennis L. Hopkins 2,137
Liberal Peter I. Pratt 2,042
Labour William (Bill) Gothard 914
Conservative Peter S. Madges 913
Conservative Francis W. Rogers 885
Labour Ian R. Hills 885
Labour Ann Watkins 843
Labour Peter Watkins 827
Labour F. J. S. Ribero
(Chico Ribero)
803
Labour Ron J. Tyler 757
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Park Ward (three seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Roland Kirby 1,367
Conservative Douglas Alan Chilvers 1,360
Conservative Veronica McCarthy 1,314
Labour Jean Thomas 1,226
Labour Bernard Lyons 1,223
Labour Brian Thomas 1,221
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Redlands Ward (three seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Eric G. Baxter 1,317
Liberal Victor John Angell
(Vic Angell)
1,312
Liberal Antony G. Milano
(Tony Milano)
1,079
Conservative R. John Goodman 987
Conservative Gladys Emily Matthews 917
Conservative John A. Thornley 875
Labour Robert H. Smith 271
Labour Pam M. Nixon 260
Labour Ron Nixon 253
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Thames Ward (four seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Kathleen Sage 2,487
Conservative Ivy Sylvia Blagrove
(Silvia Blagrove)
2,457
Conservative Cyril William Aucock 2,452
Conservative Deryck Mitchell Morton 2,425
Labour Margaret Mander 597
Labour Patricia Mary Mander
(Pat Mander)
593
Labour Eva Harding 585
Labour Priscilla Mares 567
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Conservative win
Tilehurst Ward (five seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Ronald James Day
(Jim Day)
2,416
Liberal Desmond A. Allen
(Des Allen)
2,227
Liberal George Henry Ford 2,150
Liberal Margaret M. S. McEwen 2,149
Liberal Michael Ingrey 2,115
Conservative Peter C. Boyce 926
Conservative Michael J. Caseley 847
Conservative A. J. (Tony) Guy 778
Labour David W. Asquith 555
Labour Ron J. S. Williams 552
Labour Marilyn M. Marshall 549
Labour James T. Green 545
Labour A. J. Hinder 536
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Liberal win
Whitley Ward (three seats)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Jack Price 1,094
Labour Doris Ellen Lawrence 1,059
Labour Herbert Williams
(Bert Williams)
1,045
Independent Barbara Morrison 743
Independent Roy Giles 700
Labour win
Labour win
Labour win

By-elections 1973–1976

Whitley By-Election 11 December 1975
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Mike Orton 1,038 48.5
Conservative Gladys Matthews 720 33.7
Liberal Keith Townsend 382 17.9
Majority 317 14.8
Turnout 2,139 31
Labour hold Swing

The Whitley ward by-election in 1975 was triggered by the resignation of Labour councillor Bert Williams.[12]

References

  1. ^ "Parties "must end their bickering"". Evening Post. Reading. 11 June 1973. p. 1. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  2. ^ "First political crack". Evening Post. Reading. 20 June 1973. p. 11. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  3. ^ "Get ready for heavy rate rise, warns new Liberal committee chief". Evening Post. Reading. 4 October 1973. p. 1. Retrieved 5 April 2022. Liberals took the helm of the new Reading Council's top committee yesterday... Councillor Day was voted policy committee chairman on the new district council...
  4. ^ "Next mayor must fight town elections". Evening Post. Reading. 9 May 1973. p. 8. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  5. ^ "Now Day bids for his Reading seat". Evening Post. Reading. Reading. 10 May 1973. p. 11. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  6. ^ "Reading Young Conservatives ready to invade Tilehurst". Evening Post. Reading. 11 May 1973. p. 3. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  7. ^ "Liberal 'rebel' to fight Whitley seat". Evening Post. Reading. 14 May 1973. p. 3. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  8. ^ "Evening Post Election Special". Evening Post. Reading. 8 June 1973. p. 9. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  9. ^ "Election round-up". Evening Post. Reading. 9 June 1973. p. 9. Retrieved 5 April 2022.
  10. ^ "Liberals 'can win third of seats'". Evening Post. Reading. 17 May 1973. p. 4. Retrieved 9 April 2022.
  11. ^ "Candidates line up". Evening Post. Reading. 26 April 1973. p. 6. Retrieved 9 April 2022.
  12. ^ "Labour holds Whitley seat". Evening Post. Reading. 12 December 1975. p. 1. Retrieved 6 April 2022.