Norwich City Council Elections 2021: The battle for City Hall

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Thirteen wards are up for grabs at the Norwich City Council elections. - Credit: EDP pics © 2007

A third of the seats at Norwich City Council are up for election next month - with nine of them in wards which the controlling party Labour currently hold.

Last time the city went to the polls, in 2019, it was for an 'all-out' election when all 39 seats were up for grabs.

Referendum Day - polling station in the Maids Head Hotel, in Norwich city centre. Photo : Steve Adam

Norwich will go to the polls on May 6. - Credit: Steve Adams

On that occasion the Greens made five gains from Labour - two in Mancroft and Nelson and one in Thorpe Hamlet, although Labour took a seat from the Greens in Town Close.

It still meant Labour had a comfortable majority, with 27 seats to the Green's nine and the three Liberal Democrats.

This time, 13 seats are up for grabs - and some familiar faces are not on the ballot sheet.

Labour's Roger Ryan and Jane Sarmozy are not standing in University and Lakenham, respectively, while Paul Neale is not standing for the city in Nelson, although he is hoping to win the division at county council level.

Thorpe Hamlet, which has been one of the most hotly-contested seats in the city in recent years, is currently vacant.

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Nigel Utton, who had won there in 2019 as a Green councillor subsequently quit to go independent.

He then resigned last year after saying that Covid-19 was a "little virus" and "the biggest con in history".

Candidates in Thorpe Hamlet are former Green group leader Ash Haynes, Labour's Claire Kidman, Conservative Simon Jones, independent Ash Smith and Lib Dem Jeremy Hooke.

Mr Hooke, a former city councillor and ex-Lord Mayor is a previous incumbent of the division.

Back in 2007 he won the seat with just a single vote more than Green opponent James Conway.

With Roger Ryan not standing in University ward, Labour are fielding former city councillor Emma Hampton, who lost her Nelson seat in 2019.

Emma Hampton, Labour candidate for Nelson. Pic: Labour Party.

Emma Hampton, Labour candidate for University ward. - Credit: Labour Party

Tom Holloway in standing there for the Greens, Henry Lynn, who ran in Catton Grove in 2019, for the Conservatives and Carol Chilton for the Lib Dems.

The Greens are looking to Lucy Galvin, who used to be a city councillor in Wensum ward, to triumph in Nelson.

Lucy Galvin, chair of the Marlpit Community Centre. Pic: Paul Harrison.

Lucy Galvin, Green candidate for Nelson. - Credit: Paul Harrison

She is up against Conservative Iain Gwynn, Labour''s Lynda Groves and Lib Dem Erlend Watson.

Ian Gwynn, who was the Conservative candidate for Mancroft. Pic: Conservative Party.

Iain Gwynn, standing for the Conservatives in Nelson. - Credit: Conservative Party

In Lakenham, Labour's Rachel Everett will hope to keep the ward red, with Lib Dem Paul Davies, Conservative Robert Hammond and Green Sabine Virani trying to convince voters otherwise.

In Mancroft, former Lord Mayor Martin Schmierer, who is also standing for the police and crime commissioner role, will be aiming to keep the division he first took in 2015.

Jo Smith, who used to be a ward councillor there for Labour, is trying to win it back, while the other candidates are Alan Wright (Lib Dem) and Craig Harvey (Conservatives).

James Wright, leader of the Lib Dem group, is looking to keep the Eaton ward he first won in 2010.

James Wright, Liberal Democrat city councillor for Eaton. Pic: Dan Grimmer.

James Wright, hoping to retain his Eaton ward for the Liberal Democrats. - Credit: Archant

That ward is traditionally Lib Dem controlled, but Green Jane Saunders, Labour's Chris Smith and Conservative John Ward will be hoping to change that.

The council is currently made up of 27 Labour councillors, eight Green Party and three Liberal Democrats.

The elections, on May 6, coincide with those for all 84 Norfolk County Council divisions and for a new police and crime commissioner for Norfolk.

Who are the Norwich City Council election candidates?

Bowthorpe: Sean Bennett (LD), Joshua Lowe (C), Sue Sands * (L), Jonathan Watson (Ind) 

Catton Grove: Jonathan Gillespie (C), Nigel Lubbock (LD), Tony Park (G), Mike Stonard * (L) 

Crome: Steve Barber (C), Judith Ford (G), Adam Giles * (L), Samuel Neal (LD) 

Eaton: Jane Saunders (G), Chris Smith (L), John Ward (C), James Wright * (LD) 

Lakenham: Paul Davies (LD), Rachel Everett (L), Robert Hammond (C), Sabine Virani (G) 

Mancroft: Craig Harvey (C), Martin Schmierer * (G), Jo Smith (L), Alan Wright (LD) 

Mile Cross: Fiona Dowson (G), Eric Masters (C), Vaughan Thomas * (L), Ian Williams (LD) 

Nelson: Lucy Galvin (G), Lynda Groves (L), Iain Gwynn (C), Erlend Watson (LD) 

Sewell: Helen Arundell (LD), Gary Champion (G), Evelyn Collishaw (C), Laura McCartney-Gray * (L) 

Thorpe Hamlet: Ash Haynes (G), Jeremy Hooke (LD), Simon Jones (C), Claire Kidman (L), Ash Smith (Ind) 

Town Close: Nick Caistor (G), Mary Chacksfield (C), Jacob Hamilton (LD), Ian Stutely * (L) 

University: Carol Chilton (LD), Emma Hampton (L), Tom Holloway (G), Henry Lynn (C)

Wensum: Liam Calvert (G), Gordon Dean (LD), David King (C), Martin Peek * (L)

* Denotes sitting councillor