The Tories survived a major council by-election test defending seven seats - including marginals - although some majorities were slashed.
They recorded one gain from independent when their candidate was returned unopposed at Sibsey in Lincolnshire's East Lindsey District.
Their winning margin was down to 13 votes at Neville, Rushcliffe Borough, Nottinghamshire; 54 at Eriswell and The Rows, Forest Heath District, Suffolk and also 54 at Hertfordshire's Borehamwood North division.
There was little sign of a BNP boost from the run-up to last night's BBC Question Time appearance of its leader Nick Griffin. It polled 116 votes in the only contest it fought at Jubilee, Wyre Borough, Lancashire.
It could be some time before there is evidence of the effect of the programme on the party's support as it is not contesting any of the by-elections reported so far for the next three weeks.
Analysis of six comparable results suggests an 18.1% projected nationwide Tory lead over Labour. However just two small wards in Hertsmere and High Peak saw big swings to Conservatives although the party's vote share fell in half the contested wards.
Birmingham City Sutton New Hall: C 1633, Lab 505, Ukip 344, Lib Dem 319. (May 2008 - C 3722, Lab 691, Lib Dem 479, BNP 458, Green 193). C hold. Swing 7.1% C to Lab.
East Lindsey District Sibsey: C unopposed. (May 2007 - Ind unopposed). C gain from Ind.
Forest Heath District Eriswell and The Rows: C 400, Lib Dem 346, Ukip 128. (May 2007 - Two seats C 716, 562, Ukip 304). C hold. Swing 2.2% C to Ukip.
Hertfordshire County Borehamwood North: C 982, Lab 928, Lib Dem 170, Ind 125. (June 2009 - C 1488, Lab 1110, BNP 536, Lib Dem 470, Ind 219). C hold. Swing 3.7% C to Lab.
Hertsmere Borough Potters Bar Oakmere: C 679, Lab 207. (May 2008 - C 1187, Lab 480). C hold. Swing 5.4% Lab to C.
High Peak Borough Tintwistle: C 339, Lab 111, Lib Dem 40. (May 2007 - C 320, Lab 263). C hold. Swing 18.3% Lab to C.
Rushcliffe Borough Neville: C 381, Lib Dem 368. (May 2007 - C 537, Lab 228). C hold. Swing 19.3% C to Lib Dem.
Vale of White Horse District Dunmore: Lib Dem 796, C 602, Green 71, Lab 43. (May 2007 - Two seats Lib Dem 991,964, C 777, 758, Lab 119). Lib Dem hold. Swing 0.8% C to Lib Dem.
Wyre Borough Jubilee: C 492, Ukip 345, Lab 331, BNP 116. (May 2007 - Two seats C 501, 482, Ukip 465, 408, Lab 368, 290, Lib Dem 134, 107). C hold. Swing 3.7% Ukip to C.Reuse content