Labour leader Ed Miliband swept into Ilford town centre today to hail his party’s “incredible” victory in yesterday’s council election.
On the steps of Redbridge Town Hall, he told a small crowd but enthusiastic crowd he wanted to thank the local party for their hard work in the campaign and claimed the win came from a “deep desire for change” in the UK.
Labour learnt it had taken control of the council for the first time in its 50 year history this morning. The party gained 14 seats, meaning 35 of the borough’s 63 councillors are now red.
“I just want to say thanks again for this incredible, brilliant victory in Redbridge,” Mr Miliband told supporters inside Redbridge Town Hall after addressing crowds outside.
“I also want to say how proud I am of you because you’ve done something that’s never been done in the history of Redbridge.”
He told the Recorder: “I think that what happened is that [Cllr] Jas [Athwal] and his team showed the voters they can make a difference to people’s lives”, adding he thought their message would “resound” nationwide”.
Cllr Wes Streeting, Labour’s General Election candidate in the Ilford North constituency, tweeted: “I promised @Ed_Miliband we’d win Redbridge at our campaign launch and he promised to visit again if we did. Great to have him back.”
Kashif Ansar, a 21-year-old student from Goodmayes who heard the Labour leader’s address, said: “I am ecstatic that Labour has won and I think there is a bright future for Labour in the upcoming general election.”
Peter Ledwidth, who works in Ilford, added: “I voted for Labour yesterday. It’s great to see Labour in power but it is important that they actually start doing something and make sure there is change.”