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Ribble Valley elects first ever Labour MP as massive Conservative majority overturned

Posted on - 5th July, 2024 - 6:33am | Author - | Posted in - Fulwood, Grimsargh, Longridge, Politics, Preston News, Ribble Valley Locations, Ribble Valley News, Walton-le-Dale
Maya Ellis is the Ribble Valley new MP, representing Labour. Pic credit: Blog Preston.

Labour swept to an historic victory in the Ribble Valley as the party overturned a huge Conservative majority.

Maya Ellis, who became the borough’s first ever Labour MP on a night of high tension at the general election count in Clitheroe, vowed to put the people of the Ribble Valley first.

Her victory brought to an end 32 years of Conservative rule in the borough, with Nigel Evans, who had served for all of that time, saying it had been a privilege to represent the area.

Read more: See all our live updates as the General Election results unfolded

Overturning an 18,439 majority from 2019, the final results saw Ms Ellis take 18,117 votes; Mr Evans 17,321; John Carroll, Reform, 8,524; John Potter, Liberal Democrats, 5,001; Caroline Montague, Green Party, 1,727; and Qasim Ajmi, independent, 1,273.

The turnout was 64.9 per cent.

First time MP Ms Ellis, who grew up and still lives in the Ribble Valley, said: “It is a privilege to give back to a community that has given me so much.

“We are a community that demands leadership and looks to the future, as well as looking after our own.

“I will do everything I can to deliver the change you have voted for.”

See the moment the election result was announced or on our YouTube channel

An emotional Mr Evans said he had been proud to serve, but he acknowledged that Reform’s goal of ‘taking the Tories under’ had been a challenge his party had been unable to overcome.

He added: “I would like to thank the people of the Ribble Valley who have allowed me to serve them in the way I have done.

“[Maya] please do not let the people of the Ribble Valley down [although] I know you won’t.

“I have helped thousands of people during my time as an MP and that is my legacy.”

It was a seismic night for the borough and it was the first general election following major boundary changes for Ribble Valley which had seen Clitheroe, along with parts of Whalley, removed from the old constituency and placed in with a new constituency of Pendle and Clitheroe.

With large swathes of north Preston, Fulwood, Bamber Bridge and Walton-le-Dale covered by the Ribble Valley parliamentary umbrella, some observers believed the reshaped constituency, plus the rise of Reform, would pose a real challenge to Mr Evans and the Conservatives’ reign. And so it proved on Thursday night into Friday morning.

Ironically, the election count still took place at Roefield Leisure Centre, Clitheroe, as the Boundary Commission had failed to identify a suitable venue in the reshaped Ribble Valley constituency.

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