VIDEO: Historic moment for Copeland as Conservative Trudy Harrison wins by-election

24 February 2017 4:48PM

The Conservative Party's Trudy Harrison has been named as Copeland's next MP.

We covered the day's events from around the constituency for the by-election and the count at Whitehaven Sports Centre after the polls closed at 10pm.

Mrs Harrison, a mother of four teenage daughters, said: "I'm elated.

"We've run a positive campaign with my six-point plan and I will be the true champions this area needs.

"My first job as MP will be to meet on Monday with ministers who can help deliver this plan. I will be a strong, confident voice in Parliament."

Mrs Harrison is from Bootle and was educated at Wyndham School in Egremont.

Her win is the first time the Copeland seat has been out of Labour control since 1935.

There were six other candidates contesting the Labour-held seat.

They were Labour's Gillian Troughton, Ukip's Fiona Mills, the Liberal Democrats' Rebecca Hanson, the Green Party's Jack Lenox and independents Michael Guest and Roy Ivinson.

The results were:

  • Michael Guest, independent 811 votes
  • Liberal Democrat Rebecca Hanson 2,252 votes
  • Conservative Trudy Harrison 13,748 votes
  • Roy Ivinson 116 votes
  • Green Party Jack Lenox 515 votes
  • Ukip Fiona Mills 2,025 votes
  • Labour Gillian Troughton 11,601 votes

Votes cast 31,108
Turnout 51.33 per cent

After the result was announced, Mrs Troughton quickly left the count, without speaking to anyone.

An "elated" Mrs Harrison used her acceptance speech to outline her ambitions for the borough, including her targets of securing Moorside, protecting jobs and making a success of Brexit.

"I will be a strong, confident voice in Parliament and a true champion for this area," she said.

"It's an enormous honour to be elected. Our area need someone who can make their voice heard and work with the Government to get things done; I promise to be that person.

"What has happened here is a truly historic event. It has been clear from talking to people throughout the campaign that Jeremy Corbyn does not represent them.

"They want a party that's on the side of ordinary working people, and that respects the way we voted in the referendum to build a country that represents everyone.

"People from communities across this constituency have put their faith in me; that's a special sort of responsibility. To stand up for this very special part of the world."

Mrs Harrison extended thanks to her family and team of volunteers for their support during her campaign.

Mrs Hanson said: "To come third and beat Ukip is very satisfying.

"We've almost doubled our vote from the last General Election, and people are coming to understand the Lib Dems again and what we are campaigning for.

"I think this campaign has inspired a lot of people, especially those, like myself, who have issues they care passionately about."

Mr Guest said: "I was disappointed with 811 as I'd been aiming for 2,000.

"There was a short window in which to campaign, and if there has been longer then perhaps I'd have spread my message wider and got more votes.

"But this is just the start of the independent movement; we'e got big plans for candidates in the county council elections in May."

Mr Lenox said: "I'm disappointed with the outcome. Our vote has halved since 2015, but it's been good to get the chance to share our policies with a national focus on this election.

"We've had support from all quarters of Copeland, and it's important we stand up for our policies."

Miss Mills said: "I've had good feedback throughout the campaign, and perhaps I was the victim of tactical voting.

"We did the best we could with the resources we've got. People get the MP they deserve and hopefully Trudy will come through for them. I wish her well."

Copeland mayor Mike Starkie said: "I've known Trudy for some time and have worked closely with her, and look forward to continuing this in the future.

"And to all the politicians who have been here during the campaign, I'll be holding their feet to the fire to make sure they keep the promises they have made to this borough."

Counting the ballot papers in the Copeland By-election in Whitehaven, Cumbria #NewsandStar #CopelandByElection - Spherical Image - RICOH THETA


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Cyclops   , Cockermouth Friday, 24 February, 2017 at 12:47PM
Finally the Labour Donkey has been kicked into touch. On behalf of all West Cumbrian can I propose a vote of thanks to jeremy corbyn without whose help this would wonderful event not have been possible
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a Barrovian   UK , Barrow-in-Furness Friday, 24 February, 2017 at 12:17PM
The swing of 400 votes would see John Woodcock lose his seat, a seat he only won by 795 votes
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keith   Holt , blackpool Friday, 24 February, 2017 at 11:13AM
My fondness for West Cumbria and Carlisle. A good article to the point. Sorry It's the Tories now having influene, not surprised at the result. Labour voter, i voted to stay in the EU.The revolution, total change at Westminster and Brussels.
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Orange   Peel , Flimby Friday, 24 February, 2017 at 7:40AM
Let us hope that the coming news from Mr Grayling will be to spend the money on upgrading the road network around Cumbria including the A595 and A596. But the Tories have been known to offer the world and deliver nothing.
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eric   Halfabee , whitehaven Thursday, 23 February, 2017 at 10:24PM
If Labour lose after 80 odd years in power it will be easy to blame Jeremy Corbyn. Harder perhaps will be to admit that after 80 years the people of Whitehaven look around the desolate town centres and see that actually Labour have achieved very little.
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Grahame   Pinches , CLEATOR MOOR Thursday, 23 February, 2017 at 3:22PM
I am heartily fed up of visits, calls and leaflets from the Labour Party. 5 calls in two days asking if they can count on our vote, and a final leaflet through the door at 7am this morning.
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England   English , Whitehaven Thursday, 23 February, 2017 at 8:53PM
Knocked at my mother's at 19.00 hrs, on Woodhouse, third time today. Thank God it's nearly finished with, sick of the sight of labour, Conservative and the LIMP DEMS
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