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Tories dominate Devon

Friday, December 13th, 2019 6:48am

By Daniel Clark and Ollie Heptinstall

It's as you were

The Conservatives have enjoyed another strong night in the county, as they secured a majority in the House of Commons.

Devon’s political landscape looks remarkably similar to what it did after the 2017 General Election, with the county returning MPs of the same political party in all 12 seats.

Simon Jupp, a former Radio Exe presenter, saw off the challenge of the popular Independent Claire Wright to retain East Devon following the retirement of Sir Hugo Swire.

Ms Wright had been hotly tipped to gain the seat, with an Exit Poll giving her a 96 per cent of victory, but the Conservatives held onto the seat and increased their number of voters from last night and had a near 7,000 majority. 

The Independent's vote increased from 21,270 in 2017 to 25,869 in 2019 and it was enough to see her increase her share of the vote but fall short just of a historic victory.

In Totnes, former Tory Sarah Wollaston failed to defend the seat for her new party the Liberal Democrats, after voters cast their ballots in favour of Anthony Mangnall, the Conservative candidate.

Exeter has stayed Labour, but Ben Bradshaw's majority has been cut by about 6,000 - about 9% down - though he still got more than half the vote.

Anne Marie Morris was returned for a fourth term in Newton Abbot, with the Conservative secured 29,119 votes, 55.5 per cent of the votes cast, the exact same percentage as she got in 2017.

Kevin Foster secured his third successive win for the Conservatives in Torbay, and he increased his majority to 14,000, the largest majority in the Bay since 1979.

Neil Parish in Tiverton and Honiton, Mel Stride in Central Devon, Geoffrey Cox in Torridge and West Devon, Luke Pollard and Johnny Mercer in Plymouth, and Sir Gary Streeter in South West Devon will all return to Westminster.

Conservative Selaine Saxby was elected for the first time in North Devon, replacing retiring MP Peter Heaton-Jones.

Nationwide, the Conservatives have won an overall majority, gaining nearly 50 seats, while Labour have lost more than 50 seats.

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