As one of the councillors who were culled in the election, I would like to offer a different, possibly more detached view of the results.
In England people were terrified at the spectre of having the tail wagging the dog, and scurried down the way they felt would best excise the Sturgeon spectre: they polarised their beliefs into Labour or Conservative.
This translated into a massive cull of the smaller groups. The Lib/Dems fell from being power-brokers on the national stage and became an endangered species. The massive surge in support for UKIP faltered, and they finally suffered the fate of most new groups in having a strong following, with the third greatest number of votes, but which resulted in only one seat.
The charismatic leaders of the small groups all fell on their swords. I feel sad that good speakers like Clegg and electrifying orators like Farage, as well as the enigmatic Galloway, will no longer light up the turgid gloom of big-party language. Are we to be spoon-fed politically correct, spin-doctored baby food for the next five years?
In the district elections, the night of the long knives almost completely removed Independents from the scene. In Lancaster/Morecambe the only survivor of this major group, which not long ago was the largest in the council, was so liked by many people that there would probably have been a revolution, if he had not been elected. Fear makes people abandon their beliefs and head for any place which they think might offer some shelter from the storm around them.
The coming years will see whether the United Kingdom breaks up, and whether we decide we are better standing on our own feet or being sheltered by the EU. I would not try to predict where we will be in five years time.