Conservatives take Ipswich from Labour in 2019 General Election
PUBLISHED: 04:14 13 December 2019 | UPDATED: 09:13 13 December 2019
Ipswich has a new MP today after Conservative Tom Hunt defeated Labour’s Sandy Martin by 5,479 votes – the largest Tory majority in the town in living memory.
Mr Hunt took 24,952 votes to Mr Martin's 19,473 and was declared the winner shortly before 3am on Friday morning.
After losing, Mr Martin said he was unlikely to stand for elected office again - but felt that the election had been marred by lies and personal abuse aimed at his party leader.
Before leaving the town's Corn Exchange, Mr Martin said he felt the nature of the campaign had endangered democracy - prompting catcalls and boos from Conservative supporters at the count.
Speaking after the result, Mr Hunt pledged to work hard for the town in his new role. He said Brexit and Jeremy Corbyn's leadership of the party were key issues. "Lots of people have voted Conservative for the first time."
He said many people had told him they were "lending" him their vote in this election. "We had those conversations on the doorstep and many people said 'Look Tom, I'm lending you my vote because I want to see Brexit delivered or because of Jeremy Corbyn' and I've said to them that I appreciate that and let's sit down afterwards and see what you want."
He added: "The number one priority has to be tackling crime and anti-social behaviour. I can't tell you the number of people who told me they don't feel safe going into the town centre.
"It is only going to be working hard and words are cheap, action is harder and I have to show the people of Ipswich I am an effective MP and I have to pay back their trust and get on with that."
The full Ipswich result was:
- Tom Hunt (Con) 24,952.
- Sandy Martin (Lab) 19,473
- Adrian Hyyrylainen-Trett (LibDem) 2,439
- Nicola Thomas (Brexit) 1,432
- Barry Broom (Green) 1,283