Stockport has stuck with Labour this general election, beating the second-place Conservative candidate by over 10,000 votes.
This produced the lowest turnout at the Stockport Town Hall count with 64.01% of registered voters heading to the polls.
Labour’s Navendu Mishra beat off challenges from the Conservative’s Isy Imarni and Liberal Democrat Wendy Meikle to comfortably return Labour to Stockport after the resignation of long-standing Labour MP Ann Coffey.
Mishra’s majority of 10,039 votes is significantly less that the 14,477 majority that Coffey gained in 2017; however, a comfortable victory for Labour here will be a high in a night of lows.
Ann Coffey had represented Stockport since 1992 but stepped down in February 2019 in protest at Jeremy Corbyn’s Brexit stance and Labour’s ongoing problems with anti-Semitism.
She defected to Change UK along with other Labour party figures such as Chuka Umunna as well as Conservatives such as Anna Soubry.
However, in October of this year she decided not to run again with Change UK and instead threw her support behind the Liberal Democrat candidate, Wendy Meikle.
The results of elections leading up to this, especially the European Elections, promised for a tightly run General Election.
The Liberal Democrats beat the Labour party by nearly 13,000 votes with Labour coming a tight third.
However, the hopes of the Liberal Democrats were severely diminished at the sight of the BBC exit poll which gave Labour a ‘99+%’ chance of holding the seat.
In the end it was the Conservatives that gained second with this General Election not following any trends of other recent elections.
Mishra used his speech to talk defiantly about investing in Stockport and fighting against austerity and cuts to public services in the area.
He said: “Over the past decade Stockport’s public services have been decimated by Conservative cuts and brutal austerity.”
“Tens of millions of pounds has been stripped from our council’s budgets and the NHS has been underfunded with a funding shortfall in our schools.”
In defiance to this, he exclaimed, “It doesn’t have to be like this. Stockport deserves better!”
He then criticised the Liberal Democrats role in the coalition between 2010 and 2015.
“I’ll fight to reverse the vicious policies of this government and the Liberal Democrat coalition that was inflicted on our communities.”
The packed ballroom looked on as people kept counting votes for the remaining seats. It was clear Mishra had a lot of support in the room and was very happy to speak to people after his declaration.
Mishra, who is from Stockport, spoke passionately about his drives to improve the town.
“I give you my word as your member of parliament that I’ll be a strong voice and a champion for Stockport, I’ll campaign and fight for all our public services, our schools and our health service, our social care and our children’s services.”
The seat was always expected to stay as Labour, with all the polls leading up to the election and the exit poll itself agreeing on this.
Mishra summed up his speech saying: “I thank the people of Stockport for electing me to be your MP, I know together we can build a brighter future for Stockport under Labour.
“A future where no one goes hungry; no one is homeless; and no one lives in poverty.”
No other candidates were available for a comment.