The 2023 local elections saw the Tories suffer a double blow as the party lost their majority rule in Hertsmere and Dacorum.

But Watford and the Three Rivers District remained entirely the same as the day before voting began.

Watford Observer: Watford Liberal Democrats celebrate their winWatford Liberal Democrats celebrate their win (Image: Watford Liberal Democrats)

In Hertsmere, the Conservatives went from having 29 seats down to 16, four off the 20-seat majority needed to hold another term.  

Watford MP Dean Russell said: “'Nothing is more disappointing than losing hard working Conservative councillors who have dedicated their time, energy and expertise to serving their communities.

“Their tireless efforts have made a positive impact to many people in their wards, and I have nothing but respect for people who put themselves forward for election.”

Watford Observer: Dean Russell Dean Russell

However, not a single party at the south-west Hertfordshire authority managed to take more than 50% of the seats.

It means that the borough has fallen into a situation called “No Overall Control,” which means two parties could form a coalition in a bid to rule.

The Labour Party finished with 14 seats up from seven and the Liberal Democrats now have nine seats instead of three.

Over in the borough of Dacorum, all 51 seats were up for grabs.

The Tories only won 18, having had 31 before the vote took place.

Now, Liberal Democrats have the majority rule with 28 seats, an increase on their 2019 win when they had 19.

Labour increased from one to three seats and a further two seats went to independent candidates.

In Watford, the Liberal Democrat Party has held on to its nine seats, Labour kept hold on to three wards, and the Conservatives still have none.

Liberal Democrat Mayor of Watford Peter Taylor said: “I am really pleased with the result. Nine out of 12 seats, it’s a ringing endorsement.

“We have got clear priorities for the town, and we are pleased we held our wards in Watford.”

It means the council is still made up of 27 Lib Dems and nine Labour.

The Liberal Democrats still have majority rule in Three Rivers District Council after the votes. 

However, The Green Party took an extra seat from the Liberal Democrats in the Dickinson ward.

Watford Observer: The current composition of the Three Rivers District Council.The current composition of the Three Rivers District Council. (Image: Three Rivers District Council)