Fri, 09 Jun 2017
CONSERVATIVE Richard Benyon has been re-elected as Newbury's MP.
Mr Benyon, who has held the seat since 2005, received 37,399 votes – a 61.5 per cent share and a .5 per cent increase on 2015.
Liberal Democrat candidate Judith Bunting finished second with 13,019 votes (21.4).
Labour's Alex Skirvin received 8,596 votes (14.1), while Green Party candidate Paul Field finished on 1,531 (2.5).
Apolitical candidate Dave Yates got 304 votes (0.5).
Commenting on his 24,380 majority, Mr Benyon said: "I wish to thank my fellow candidates, it's never easy; it's a challenging thing to do and it's been conducted with spirit and with grace.
"This is an extraordinary result for us here in West Berkshire and you see what's happening around the country and to pull a popular vote like that is a huge achievement for my wonderful team of supporters.
"I just think tonight I hope, with a degree I hope comes across with humility, our party have got to do some serious thinking about how we progress from here; and I understand concerns people have in an area like this where we are facing difficulties with our local authority and having enough resources to take things forward; and I want to work with everybody regardless of how they voted or whether they voted at all.
"I want to get the best deal for West Berkshire in the uncertain times as we go ahead towards Brexit and toward the future that we face.
"I'm thrilled with the result. I commit myself to every single person in West Berkshire to try and make sure that they have the fruits of the benefits of one of the one of the greatest countries and part of that country that we are lucky enough to live in."
Runner-up Judith Bunting received 21.4 per cent of the vote, an increase on the 15 per cent share last time around by 6.4 per cent.
In her speech she warned Mr Benyon to stick by his words.
"I want to say to Richard please do stand up for our area. Please do live up to what you said and try and stop this stinking hard Brexit that we are heading for at the moment.
"We know where your heart lies. We want you to stand up for what your constituency believes in."
Speaking to the NWN she said: "It's a real testament to our fabulous volunteers and the positive campaign that they ran that our vote share increased to 21 per cent when the Conservatives stayed rock steady. It looks like the UKIP vote was split more or less evenly between the Conservatives and Labour.
"We are still a very strong second party and we have reacted strongly on the result of 2015 and I look forward to the next election."
Former leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg, lost his Sheffield Hallam seat.
Mrs Bunting said: "I'm very very disappointed to see Nick Clegg losing his seat. I think they [Labour] mobilised the student vote but that's rumour. I for one am not convinced that Labour will be able to deliver on their promises.
"It looks like the Conservatives are not going to have a clear majority and I think that's a testament that people are not happy with the brutal, hard Brexit that she [Theresa May] is leading us to.
"It looks like the next week or two are going to be very interesting."
Labour candidate Alex Skirvin said he was proud to have stood for the party in Newbury and thanked all who had taken part.
"Consider the campaign we have fought. We knocked on more doors and delivered more leaflets and we painted the town red. Though we did not win, in seats like this it is the small victories that matter.
"I'm proud to have stood not just as one of the UK's youngest candidates but as the Labour Party's youngest LGBT candidate in the UK.
"Tonight across the country we have seen yet another example of what happens when politicians fail to listen. Theresa May bet the house on a Brexit election and Britain called her bluff.
"And for all those here tonight, let me offer you one final assurance; Newbury Labour has arrived."
Labour received 8,596 votes compared with the 4,837 votes from 2015; up 5.7 per cent.
Party agent Alan Childs told the NWN: "It's the best result for Labour here since 1974.
"There's an appetite in Newbury for Labour policies when they presented with them and the party has grown five-fold over the last few years. It shows that the people of Newbury constituency who previously were unable to vote for a party that wasn't cutting through on the doorstep is now able to compete for votes everywhere in the Newbury area.
Apolitical candidate David Yates polled 304 votes a huge improvement on his 95 votes when he last stood in 2010.
Mr Yates is campaigning for monetary reform and told the NWN: "You know I wasn't in this to win. I was in this to portray a message.
"The one person I want to take the message away is Richard Benyon. I want him to go back to parliament with this."
However, Green Party candidate Paul Field received 1,531 votes, a 1.5 per cent drop on the 2,324 from 2015.