Conservatives take Newcastle-under-Lyme for first time in a century
Written by The Newsroom on December 13, 2019
The Conservatives have gained Newcastle-under-Lyme, ending a century of Labour representation.
Labour’s Paul Farrelly had a majority of just 30 votes at the last election which Aaron Bell has now increased to 7,446 for the Tories.
Mr Bell said voters had come over to the party to “get Brexit done”.
Elsewhere, the Tories won Stoke-on-Trent North from the Labour party for the first time since the seat was created in 1950.
The seat has been held by Labour since 1919 when JC Wedgwood abandoned the Liberal Party.
Mr Bell said: “It is a huge statement of faith from the people of Newcastle.
“Based on the feedback I’ve got on the doorsteps, people feel the Labour party abandoned them and they were coming over to us to get Brexit done.”
In Stoke-on-Trent North, the Conservatives also secured a majority of 6,286 votes.
Jonathan Gullis took the seat from Ruth Smeeth who had represented the area since 2015.
Ms Smeeth said it had been “heartbreaking” to hear on the doorstep in the run-up to the election that people supported her as their MP, but could not vote for Jeremy Corbyn.
Mr Gullis said he did not think the vote was “all to do with Brexit”.
“I think they have seen what has happened in Stoke-on-Trent South with Jack Brereton and I think they wanted that change, the wanted to see a different kind of politics,” he said.
Mr Brereton was also re-elected as the Conservative in his seat with a majority of 11,271 votes.
The Tories also took Stoke-on-Trent Central, a seat which has been held by Labour since it was created in 1950.
Jo Gideon secured a majority of 670 votes.
Earlier, former MP Gareth Snell said the elections had been “disastrous” for Labour.
“The message heard by voters is that Labour is trying to stop Brexit,” he said.
“Unfortunately, [the shadow cabinet] decided stopping Brexit was more important than respecting the vote in marginal constituencies in the Midlands and the North,” he said.
Updates from the Cannock Chase Radio News Desk via BBC Stoke and Staffordshire