I was at the count for the by-election in Newington.
The results proved hard to call right up to the end when Labour finally took the win.
That means that UKIP have lost another seat and overall majority at TDC. It is starting to seem that any hope of stability at our district council is a fiction as the purple hold on the council becomes increasingly fragile.
The following observations are entirely my own opinion.
Despite a little inter-party tension early on the ballot was, overall, a civil affair. That is unless you happen to be in a place to earwig on conversations between candidates and supporters.
The bitter tribalism seen in council chambers was in full swing, albeit masked by pleasant smiles and every attempt at good manors. At one point I thought that Labours army of rosettes were going to start an argument with the venue managers over their tenancy to crowd the entranceway. Sure, it was very cold but the polling station is not an appropriate place for a political party to hang around in large numbers.
That's not to say that individual members of these groups were not, on the whole, apparently decent people but as a group this was less apparent.
The comments from the ex-conservative UKIP leader, Chris Wells, in Kent online seem to me to be equal parts sour-grapes and paranoia. The Labour comments, on the other hand, seem equal parts premature celebration and unnecessary crowing. Nether the winner nor the looser in that election can hold any claim of being a good sport - UKIP being a bad loosers and Labour very poor winners.
I understand that politics can be a passionate issue but every single person there is a human being, even if they do hold ideas that are next to impossible to agree with. Also, as representatives of the people (apparently), we should be able to expect better behaviour from our political parties.
Labour might have won the election but they seem to have been willing to needlessly surrender the moral high ground while they did.
We need change at TDC and, right now, I do not think that we are simply not being offered it.