Election 2017: Labour hold in Tower Hamlets as Conservatives lose majority
PUBLISHED: 05:46 09 June 2017 | UPDATED: 06:02 09 June 2017
The winning MPs said they were "delighted" to hold their seats amid the new certainty that the country will today be facing a hung parliament after huge Labour gains.
Incumbent MP Rushanara Ali won 42,969 of the votes in Bethnal Green and Bow, while Jim Fitzpatrick, who was elected for the sixth time, scooped 39,558 in Poplar and Limehouse.
The buoyant mood at ExCeL London, where counting agents and party members waited in tense anticipation throughout the night, reflected the mood among Labour voters across the country.
Ms Ali said she was “delighted” to have been elected as she addressed crowds in the Royal Victoria Dock exhibition hall. She thanked her opposition candidates who ran “honourable” campaigns “free of smears”.
“This victory is an expression of hope over fear,” she added. “It’s also an expression of solidarity over division and intolerance.”
Turnout was high in both constituences, with 67.68 per cent recorded in Poplar & Limehouse (up from 62.2pc in 2015) and a nearly 6pc increase for Bethnal Green and Bow, to 69.84pc.
In Bethnal Green and Bow, Independent Ajmal Masroor won 3,888 votes; Conservative Charlie Chirico gained 7,576, Liberal Democrats William Dyer 2,982, the Green Party’s Alistair Polson 1,516 and Ukip candidate Iain de Wulverton 894.
In Poplar and Limehouse, Christopher Wilford (Con) 11,846, Elaine Bagshaw (Lib Dem) 3,959, Bethan Lant (Green) 989, Nichola McQueen (Ukip) 849 and David Barker (Independent) 136.
Nationally, Labour and Conservatives would need 326 to win outright, and at the time of writing a majority is currently looking highly unlikely. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has called on Theresa May to resign after the Prime Minister called a snap election to increase her mandate for Brexit negotiations.
More to follow.