Sunday, 6 May 2007

Friday 4th May 07, Election Count day

Got up early to try to write a letter but didn't get very far. As soon as Gill came back from the 'school run' (on her bike of course!) I cycled over to Acomb where the count was taking place. The count was in a large sports hall, with all the workers in the centre and the candidates and agents and observers around the outside, watching what was going on. It's quite an exciting process in some ways, and very boring in others, but I enjoy being there and participating in it.

The ballot papers were first sorted into block votes and split votes, these where there were two or three councillors to be voted in. Where someone had voted for both or all 3 of one party's candidates, they were placed in piles for counting. Where a voter had voted for 2 or 3 different parties, these were gone thruogh one by one and the names of the candidate voted for read out and a second election worker marked them off on a special sheet.

When all these figures were added up and ready to be announced, the candidates and agents were asked to come into a corner together and look at the disputed and spoiled ballots, and they were either agreed as good or spoiled or not filled in.

One of the first to be called was Bishopthorpe, where John Galvin (Conservative) had been voted out of last election, and soon after that, I had collared him and asked him if he would be the chair of York Credit Union Study Group. In this role I had got to know him quite well, and had grown to respect and like him, not his party politics, John as a person. So i was happy that this time he was elected back ono the council, the first of 8 Tory councillors, all new after a Tory-free term. Labour did quite well, and the Lib-Dems didn't, as they have generally been viewed as having cocked up badly this term. Fortunately the Fishergate Greens both got elected, Andy D'Agorne for a second term and Dave Taylor for his first, replacing Mark Hill.

We did quite well in some other wards, including increasing our share in my ward, Hull Road, where Andrew Collingwood and I got about 15%. Two Labour councillors got in here.

I went to see the media students during the count and after my result was announced, i think they enjoyed the process and were glad to have got involved, or at least observed it.

I cycled home via my usual compostables collection route and got hiome in time to go and get the boys. Felt quite deflated and down, as not getting in always leaves me feeling like this, even if I don't expect to get in. Also, as the phone still wasn't working, so I was unable to ring from home or do my emails. Gill spent much of the day trying to get it fixed, by going to the public call box round the corner and having to deal with automated messages...

In the evening I went round to a friend's house and used their phone to download emails and let people know what had happened, re electoral stuff and lack of phone stuff.

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