Marvin Rees wins second term as Bristol mayor
Labour retains Bristol mayoralty despite nationwide losses
The Labour Party incumbent has won a second term as Bristol mayor, retaining the seat in the face of fierce competition from the Green Party.
Marvin Rees, first elected in 2016 as the city’s first mayor, has defeated the Green Party’s Sandy Hore-Ruthven, winning with 59,276 votes to 45,663 in the second round of counting.
Rees said win is “qualified” until the results of the Bristol council election are declared, due tomorrow during the day.
Although the Greens received more second preference votes, Labour retained a large majority from the first preferences.
However, Labour is still predicted to lose council seats and is facing a nationwide collapse in its vote, losing the Hartlepool by-election, having held that seat since it was first created.
Sandy Hore-Ruthven told The Bristol Tab that this election proved that the Green Party was a “viable alternative”, and urged students to stick with them
Due to Covid restrictions, the votes were counted on Saturday so that social distancing could be maintained.
The votes were tallied throughout Saturday night and into the early hours on Sunday, with the Greens and Labour neck and neck for most of the night.
Student areas such as Clifton, Cotham, Redland, and Stoke Bishop had higher turnouts than the city average of 41.04 per cent.
Redland had the highest voter turnout of the heavy student areas with 56.47 per cent of eligible voters going to the polls. The student area with the lowest turnout was Stoke Bishop, with a 45.35 per cent turnout, which was still over 3 per cent above the city-wide average.
Rees’s manifesto appealed to students, promising free transport and better checks and balances on landlords.
He will be sworn in as Mayor on Monday, confirming his second term in the position.
However, the Conservative candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner won his election, beating Labour who came in second, and the Green candidate in third.
Results of the election to the Bristol City Council are expected on Sunday in the daytime. Four Bristol Uni students are running for seats.
Sandy Hore-Ruthven congratulated Marvin Rees, saying that the race “has made me love Bristol even more than I already did.”
He told The Bristol Tab after the declaration that this election proved that the Green Party was a “viable alternative”, and urged students to stick with the party, pointing to the wide-ranging agenda of the party, not just limited to climate change.