It was not the best of nights for my team.

Labour managed to gain control of the Council.

What are my initial thoughts on the campaign?

People told us last night that they weren’t coming out to vote for a wide variety of reasons, but not one of those reasons was about Local Council issues. Not one. We had a large number of people who regularly vote Conservative who decided to just stay at home. All of them wanted to send David Cameron and George Osborne, be it over general dissatisfaction with the government direction, fuel tax, not liking the Coalition, Cameron’s comments on gay marriage, defence cuts, budget mess ups, grannies, pasties and a general malaise with the national politicians.

Taking a quick look at the stats also shows me, that in Harlow, we outperformed the national; which suggests our campaigning was good and that our Party locally, including our very good MP Rob Halfon are respected by a core of our voters.

Overall my message to David Cameron today?

Get a grip!

The country is facing hard times and we have seen enough cock ups from Downing Street.

I spotted on ConHome that James Cleverly has been elected leader of the Conservative Group on the London Assembly.

Well done to James who regularly blogs here.

I met James last year in the General Election, when he pitched up on a saturday morning to help get Rob Halfon elected in Harlow. Despite arriving as both phones were ringing, the printing machine and folding machine clattering away he was not phased and was happy to be loaded down with leaflets and a map and hit the streets quickly – for that alone he had my thanks and respect, but having read his blog and followed him on twitter since he seems a

Yesterday, I took leave from my day job in the NHS to work on Council issues, the main one being a meeting with Bob Neill, the Local Government Minister, in Westminster. I went with my Chief Executive and Harlow’s hard working MP Rob Halfon, to argue the case for a bit more cash for Harlow.

I fully support the Coalition’s aims in reducing the national budget and have defended these both locally and nationally, but there are some issues I have with how the funding is worked out that leads me to think that Harlow deserves just a little slice more money over the next couple of years to help with our improvements that we have been making and strive to keep making.

Bob Neill was exceptionally well briefed about our situation and it was a pleasure to meet with him.

Burns night is, I believe, the 25th of January, but I was observing it early last night with Saffron Walden Conservatives, at the Saffron Walden Golf Club.

Saffron Walden Conservatives helped out in Harlow a lot during the General Election, working to get Rob Halfon elected as Harlow’s MP. It was nice to visit them in return, help with their fundraising efforts and see many of the people who came to help out.

The evening was a wonderful one, with a superb Bagpiper and an interesting speech on the meaning of Auld Lang Syne. The food, starting with Haggis Neeps and Tatties was also very tasty.

I admire how much the Scots, where ever they are in the world keep toasting their national poet and keep their Scottishness alive; it made me wonder why we don’t do the same in England… We have arguably the most famous national bard in Shakespeare so perhaps it is time that we started having Shakespeare Nights….

My MP Rob Halfon is starting to get some media attention in America from the Fox News Network, for talking about the Tea Party and their most visible person from this side of the Atlantic, Sarah Palin.

I am rather chuffed that it was my posting of a video that encouraged Rob to blog about both Tea Party and Sarah.

And of course only right and proper that a Conservative Member of Parliament should be talking about the benefits of low taxation and freeing people from government regulation!