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Labour keep Bethnal Green & Bow and Poplar & Limehouse with easy margins

PUBLISHED: 06:33 13 December 2019 | UPDATED: 06:33 13 December 2019

Bethnal Green and Bow Labour candidate Rushanara Ali giving her victory speech at the count in the ExCeL. Picture: Luke Acton.

Bethnal Green and Bow Labour candidate Rushanara Ali giving her victory speech at the count in the ExCeL. Picture: Luke Acton.

Luke Acton

Labour’s Rushanara Ali has kept her seat of Bethnal Green & Bow and newcomer Apsana Begum has won Jim Fitzpatrick’s old seat of Poplar & Limehouse - both with comfortable margins.

Apsana Begum speaking at the election count in the early hours of Friday, December 13. Picture: Luke Acton.Apsana Begum speaking at the election count in the early hours of Friday, December 13. Picture: Luke Acton.

Ms Ali won 44,052 of the 60,810 ballots cast - 72 per cent of the vote. Ms Begum won 38,660 votes out of 61,562 - 62 per cent of the vote.

While Labour made slight gains in terms of vote share in Bethnal Green and Bow, the new candidate for Poplar & Limehouse slipped by five per cent.

Still, both were wins for Labour in an otherwise bleak night for the party. Nationally, it saw loses that will give the Conservatives an easy majority in the House of Commons.

Ms Ali said in her victory speech: "Representing the place I grew up in is the proudest achievement of my life. I'm humbled by the support of all those who voted for me."

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Ms Begum was declared the winner of Poplar & Limehouse shortly after and said: "I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the constituents of Poplar & Limehouse for the faith that they have placed in me and my party.

"I do not underestimate the privilege they have given me and attempt to return their faith by working hard to serve all communities."

The Conservatives came second in both the counts. The party's Bethnal Green & Bow candidate Nicholas Stovold said at the count that would be a good result for him, though he also said he'd like to shave off some of Labour's margin. That didn't happen in BGB but Ms Ali did lose some of Fitzpatrick's previous margin in Poplar and Limehouse.

Mr Stovold won 6,528 votes. The BGB Green candidate Mohammad Ali won 2,570, the Lib Dems' Josh Babarinde won 5,892, the Brexit Party's David Axe got 1,081 and the Animal Welfare Party's Vanessa Hudson received 439.

In Poplar and Limehouse, the Conservatives' Sheun Oke got 9,756, the Lib Dem's Andrew Cregan received 8,832, the Greens' David Jameson won 2,159, Catherine Cui for the Brexit Party got 1,493 and independent Andy Erlam came in last with 376.

The East London Advertiser's live blog of the count is here.


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