Local elections analysis from our Political Correspondent Alison Mackenzie

Labour rosette

Red rosettes were dominating the pictures of cheers and celebration at counts across the Midlands today and overnight but the results in no way signal a wipe-out for the Conservatives as some had predicted.

They held on comfortably at Solihull council and in the majority of Police and Crime Commissioner elections in the midlands.

The first stand-out result for Labour was in Redditch.

The message was clear according to the new council leadership - it was a focus on local issues that had won the support of the voters.

Labour were victorious in Redditch Credit: ITV News Central

A significant victory too in Nuneaton and Bedworth - in previous years the Conservatives have bucked the trend and stayed in power but not so this time.

But I think the most significant result was the East Midlands Mayoral contest.

A brand new role captured by Labour's Claire Ward who again put the focus on local issues.

She beat her tory rival Ben Bradley by more than 50,000 votes.

Her party will see it as confirmation that they are on target to regain the notorious red wall seats lost in the 2019 General Election - seats such as Bassetlaw, Bolsover, Ashfield and Gedling.

It's also a chance for the East Midlands to be higher in the queue for public spending projects though admittedly it's only Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire who make up the new Combined County Authority.

Claire Ward, new East Midlands Mayor Credit: ITV News Central

As ever the turnout in local elections is poor - often only a third of those eligible to cast their vote bother to do so - but nevertheless today has been a key test of public opinion in advance of the General Election which is looming ever closer.

Tomorrow the eagerly awaited results of the contest for West Midlands Mayor.

Labour is not so confident of seizing victory from incumbent Andy Street -

But of course if he were to win an historic third time it might make the immediate future a little easier for beleaguered Prime Minister Rishi Sunak - even though there was scant mention of the Conservatives in the Mayor's election leaflets.

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