GENERAL ELECTION 2015: Joy for Labour as Gordon Marsden retains seat

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Gordon Marsden said it was “an honour and privilege” to have won the Blackpool South seat for the fifth time.

The popular constituency MP saw off the tough challenge of the Conservative candidate Peter Anthony, and the Labour member saw his majority increase.

Mr Marsden said: “It is a huge honour and privilege to have been elected for a fifth time in Blackpool South.

“It shows not only the hard work in the community that we have done and that includes by my campaign chief and local councillors.

“Also it shows the people of Blackpool South have kept faith with the Labour Party on a night that is beginning to be diappointing nationally.

“I think it is a reflection of the fact we campaign primariliy on issues of regenertaion, supporting small business and the NHS. These are all bread and butter issues.”

Tory candidiate Mr Anthony said: “I am disappointed to lose by such a small amount.

“I think I have run an excellent, clean campaign and if it was just down to hard work I think I should have won it because I have really bust a gut right from the day I was selected, but on the night it is not enough.

“I would prefer David Cameron to be Prime Minister than me to be an MP and it is looking like he is still going to Prime Minister and it would have been a disaster for the country to change course.”

UKIP’s Peter Wood, who finished the night in third place, said: “From a standing start we have to take it as a positive outcome, although I am disappointed I didn’t win.

“When we stand again, we will be more structured and experienced and better prepared and I am grateful to the people who did vote for me.”

Liberal Democrat candidate Bill Greene said: “The main reason I was standing was to give people the opportunity to vote Liberal Democrat.

“Looking at the national picture, a lot of our resources have been concentrated in a number of target seats with the intention of holding them.

“So in seats like Blackpool South the intention was to give people opportunity to vote Liberal Democrat and I welcome that and thank people for every vote I got.”

Andy Higgins, who stood as an independent candidate to highlight the plight of Blackpool Football Club said he was pleased with the support he attracted.

Mr Higgins, who was backed by the Blackpool Supporters Trust, said the opportunity to highlight the plight of Blackpool FC was as important as the result.

He said: “We have run a really good campaign.

“It’s been very visible and high profile and it has been more about the publicity for our cause then the result.”

Fellow independent candidate Lawrence Chard said he had not anticipated getting his deposit back, but he added: “I am already responsible for at least two people voting who have not voted in at least 20 years.”

Gordon Marsden wins Blackpool South for Labour

Gordon Marsden wins Blackpool South for Labour