Labour's failure to deprive the Conservatives of control in Swindon is a blow to the party.
They needed only the smallest swing since 2010 and actually lost further ground. The two Swindon constituencies are both on their target list for the next general election.
UKIP's successes in the local elections have raised the possibility of them winning a Westminster seat at the general election.
A year ahead of the general election, Ed Miliband's party is seeing only patchy support in areas it should expect to gain ground.
UKIP are likely to make Rotherham a key target for 2015 after a storming result in the local elections.