Wallace retains Wyre and Preston North for the Conservatives

Ben Wallace has been elected for the fifth time in the constituency.
Ben Wallace has been elected for the fifth time in the constituency.
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Conservative Ben Wallace has retained his Wyre and Preston North seat.

The Defence Secretary retained the seat with 31,589 votes, ahead of Joanne Ainscough (Labour) with 14,408, John Potter (Lib Dem) with 4,463, Ruth Norbury (Green) with 1,729 and David Ragozzino (Independent) with 335.

The turnout figure was more than 70 per cent.

Mr Wallace said: “The results we have seen coming in through the night shows that Lancashire and the country have seen through Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell's hard left fantasies.

"The Conservatives will deliver Brexit and lets get on with it and get us out of the EU."

He also said the Labour Party needs time to 'reflect.'

He said: "We found out in 1997, that when in opposition you learn your lesson. The Labour Party will have to reflect on this General Election and realise that the public won't vote for far-left politics as much as they won't vote for the far-right."

As party representatives gathered at Garstang YMCA, the result was declared at around 3.30am today.

Mr Wallace had an increased majority from the 12,246 he held after the 2017 election in the affluent constituency, which is regarded as one of the safest seats in the North West.

But the other candidates who battled to try and make a dent in the Tory safe seat told The Gazette their efforts had not been wasted.

Mr Wallace’s election rivals say the seat is still safe but they can only try their best.

Labour’s Joanne Ainscough said: “We have all campaigned amicably. It's a long, sad night and lots of really good Labour colleagues have lost their seats. I am absolutely chuffed to bits with the amount of votes I got. Six weeks ago I wasn't even a candidate so the amount of support I have received is fantastic.

Lib Dem John Potter said: “My votes were up nearly four percent on last time, and to be honest I'm happy I have kept my deposit and put up a good show.

"It's a safe seat for the Conservatives and it still is. But I will continue fighting as a councillor for the Liberal Democrats and as an opposition leader

Mr Ragozzino did not turn up for the count.