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Labour wins Kingswood by-election overturning large Tory majority

Labour has dealt another blow to the Conservative party after winning the Kingswood by-election, with the party overturning a Tory majority of more than 11,000.

Damien Egan secured 11,176 votes and a majority of 2,501, in a victory that now means the Conservatives have suffered more by-election defeats in this Parliament than any previous government since the 1960s.

Sir Keir Starmer said it was a “fantastic result” in the South Gloucestershire constituency.

“By winning in this Tory stronghold, we can confidently say that Labour is back in the service of working people and we will work tirelessly to deliver for them.

“To those who have put their trust in us, you can be safe in the knowledge that the Labour Party will deliver on your priorities. Labour will give Britain its future back.”

Mr Egan thanked residents and people of Kingswood for their support.

“In Kingswood, as across the country, 14 years of Conservative government have sucked the hope out of our country with a feeling that no matter how hard you work, you just can’t move forward,” he said.

“And with Rishi’s recession we’re left again paying more and getting less. It doesn’t have to be this way, you know it, I know it, we all know it.

“When the Prime Minister finally finds the courage to give the people a say, we’re going to need each and every one of you again to come out and vote and make sure your voices are heard.

“Our country is at a crossroads. Under the Conservatives we can choose more managed decline, more chaos, more division or we can choose a changed Labour Party.

“A government that will put people first, ensures the child’s background isn’t a barrier to their future and that will rebuild Great Britain.”

The result will add to the pressure on Rishi Sunak, coming a day after it emerged the UK had entered a recession at the end of 2023.

The Conservatives have now lost nine by-elections in the course of this parliament – one more than the eight defeats suffered by John Major’s 1992-97 administration.

The by-election was triggered by Chris Skidmore’s resignation as an MP in protest at Government legislation to boost North Sea oil and gas drilling.

Earlier in the night Conservative deputy chairman Luke Hall said his party had run a “great campaign” in Kingswood, but admitted the contest was “difficult”.

He told the BBC: “By-elections are always difficult for governing parties. Tony Blair lost by-elections, David Cameron lost by-elections, and then went on to win majorities and actually increase their share of the vote at the next general election.

“So I think we should be careful about reading too much into any specific by-election result because a lot of different factors are at play.”

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