Rochdale council local election 2024 results in full

Minaam Ellahi and Farooq Ahmed -Credit:LDRS
Minaam Ellahi and Farooq Ahmed -Credit:LDRS

Rochdale council is still dominated by Labour - despite the Workers Party, led by George Galloway - taking two seats from them at the local elections.

The MP promised to oust Labour from the council following his by-election win in February. That wasn't quite the case on May 3, but his party took two seats from the reds.

Labour are still very much in control at the town hall, boasting a huge majority. But the loss of the Central Rochdale and Milkstone and Deeplish wards - to Farooq Ahmed and Minaam Ellahi respectively - will have stung.

READ MORE: Local election 2024 results LIVE: Manchester results announced as George Galloway's party snatches deputy leader's seat

In the the chamber, there are now 44 Labour seats. The Conservatives are the largest opposition party with nine seats; then the Lib Dems with three; while both the Middleton Independents Party (MIP) and Workers Party have two seats each.

At Rochdale Leisure Centre, the main talking point of the day, yet again, was how the Workers Party would do. Early on, there were rumours Mr Galloway's party could have taken two seats. That later became a reality.

Mr Galloway hailed the wins and claimed the party 'will not rest until [they] knock Labour out'. The former Labour MP added: "We are second [in terms of popularity] not just in Rochdale, but the whole borough. We only started as a party at the beginning of February, now we are bowling out their leaders."

The count at Rochdale Leisure Centre -Credit:LDRS
The count at Rochdale Leisure Centre -Credit:LDRS

Labour distanced themselves from the Workers Party - physically and politically - at the count, saying they fought a campaign on their record in running the council. Although there's no love lost between Labour and the Workers Party, there was no hostility on the counting hall floor.

Rochdale Labour leader Coun Neil Emmott, said: "This was a strong, positive result for Labour. We ran an upbeat campaign focused on our record locally and put forward a range of detailed policies to make life better for all communities in Rochdale.

"This was a disastrous result for the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, with their votes melting and people switching straight to Labour. And after all the bluster and rhetoric about how his 'grand coalition' was going to 'clean the clock' with Labour, George Galloway has managed to win just two seats.

"Rochdale is the home of co-operation and our communities want politicians who will be builders, not wreckers."

Over at the separate count in Heywood, it was a stalemate with no gains or losses. Normally, Middleton is the key battleground between Labour and the MIP, but this year it failed to deliver drama.

Rochdale MP George Galloway -Credit:LDRS
Rochdale MP George Galloway -Credit:LDRS

Although the independent group came second in each Middleton seat, it was Keely O'Mara in the north ward who came closest, just 129 votes short of the Labour winner Kath Bromfield.

Reacting, Ms O'Mara said: "Everyone here loves Middleton, we're a local party for local people. A lot of promises are made [by other parties] that can't be kept. We didn't do that.

"We made promises we knew we would be able to keep."

It was a quiet election for the Conservatives and the Lib Dems, who seemed content to hold onto what they had. Both group leaders were confident they would hold the wards they have - anything else would be a bonus.

Moving into the general election, expected to be held later this year, the message from the controlling Labour group is that they need to win back trust.

Coun Emmott added: "We will listen to those people who haven’t voted Labour today and work hard to regain their trust. What Rochdale desperately needs now is a general election. The choice is a decade of renewal with Labour, incompetence and drift with the Tories, or division with Galloway."

Greater Manchester local election results 2024

Here are all the local election results where you live in Greater Manchester: