Richard Bacon has been re-elected as South Norfolk MP for his fourth consecutive parliamentary term, extending his majority to more than 50 per cent of the total votes.
The Conservative Party candidate retained the seat he previously won in 2001, 2005 and 2010 with 30,995 votes, over 20,000 more than the next highest candidate, Labour Party representative Deborah Sacks.
Following his re-election, which was declared at Long Stratton Leisure Centre shortly before 5am today, Mr Bacon said: “I’m very grateful. It’s a great endorsement for the work I have been doing. I have found it very humbling that people have put their faith in me and I would like to live up to that.”
Mr Bacon immediately highlighted his top priorities for the South Norfolk constituency as addressing and improving local broadband, housing and road infrastructure, citing in particular the plan for a bypass in Long Stratton as an issue that had to be approached “holistically”.
Giving his views on the national picture, which currently shows the Conservatives closing in on a majority, the MP added: “I think it’s a very good sign for the common sense of the people. It’s a careful endorsement to keep going because they feel we are on the right track.”
Labour candidate Ms Sacks, whose vote count of 10,502 helped her achieve a second place finish, improving on Mick Castle’s performance in the 2010 election, was thankful for the opportunity to run for the seat.
“We have given a voice to some of these people who didn’t previously have a voice. I regard that as a platform for better things later on,” she said.
UK Independence Party candidate Barry Cameron, whose third place finish with 7,847 votes was also an improvement from the last election, congratulated Mr Bacon, describing him as a “decent and honourable man”, and also expressed positivity about UKIP’s performance nationwide.
Altogether, the voter turnout was 71.04 per cent, down slightly from 72.2 per cent in 2010.
The final results are as follows:
* Richard Bacon (Conservative Party): 30,995
* Deborah Sacks (Labour Party): 10,502
* Barry Cameron (UK Independence Party): 7,847
* Jacky Howe (Liberal Democrats): 4,689
* Catherine Rowett (Green Party): 3,090
More to follow...