North Somerset Labour Party members have congratulated Sophie Davies for increasing Labour’s share of the vote in the 6 May election for a Portishead East seat on North Somerset district council.
Although Sophie came fourth, behind the Liberal Democrat, Conservative and the successful Portishead Independents candidate, she boosted Labour’s share of the vote from 7.78% in the 2019 election to 11.5% this time.
May’s CLP branch meeting heard a series of members paying tribute to the work done by Sophie and her team in a campaign that highlighted issues such as affordable housing and the cladding scandal, transport links, the vital role of key workers, and local services and job security.
Hannah Young, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for North Somerset in the 2019 general election, told the meeting: “huge congratulations to Sophie. She ran a great campaign and we had a good set of campaign experiences, learning a great deal in the process.”
"Huge congratulations to Sophie. She ran a great campaign and we had a good set of campaign experiences, learning a great deal in the process." Hannah Young - Campaigns Vice Chair and former Parliamentary Candidate
CLP Acting Chair (and Campaigns Vice-Chair) Michael Harriott commented: “well done to Sophie and everyone in the team. We ran a very good campaign on the ground and learned some vital lessons about digital campaigning. I am heartened by the fact that we increased our share of the vote.’
With the help of members from other areas, a total of 3,500 leaflets were delivered to homes in the ward. Importantly, campaign committee team member Joe Rees Jones said the campaign had done a lot to create a conversation with the community and to raise the profile of Labour in Portishead. “I think we had some good images and messages,” added team member Pete Templeton; “the second leaflet was a good idea – rather like a second vaccine dose!”
The campaign also made extensive use of social media, including Facebook advertising that reached more than 5,700 people. ‘We learnt lots about digital campaigning, and especially how to place and run Facebook ads which the CLP had never got its head around before,’ said Communications and Social Media Officer Owain Evans.
“The targeted Portishead East Facebook ads took a bit of cracking, but they reached a significant number of people in the end,” added campaign team member Maria Scott. ‘I think whoever took that photo of Sophie for the leaflet and advertising did a great job – her fresh, smiling face put out a great, positive message.”
Team members have begun work on a detailed analysis of the election and the lessons that it may offer the CLP and a report will be produced for members to consider in the coming weeks.
We look forward to winning the trust of more voters in order to further increase our vote share next time around!
"We ran a very good campaign on the ground and learned some vital lessons about digital campaigning. I am heartened by the fact that we increased our share of the vote." Michael Harriot - Chair and Campaigns Vice Chair