Liberal Democrat Richard Foord wins the battle to become the new Honiton and Sidmouth MP, beating Conservative Simon Jupp

Liberal Democrat Richard Foord has won the battle to become the new Honiton and Sidmouth MP beating his rival, Conservative Simon Jupp.

Richard Foord has become the Liberal Democrat MP for the new Honiton and Sidmouth seat, beating another MP from the previous parliament, writes local democracy reporter Bradley Gerrard.

Mr Foord secured 23,007 votes, more than his nearest rival, the Conservative Simon Jupp, who secured 16,307 and had represented the old East Devon seat since 2019.

The majority that Mr Foord secured meant that even if Reform UK’s 6,289 for its candidate Paul Quickenden were transferred to the Conservatives, the Lib Dem would still have won.

Addressing the count after his victory, Mr Foord said the support of well-known local independent Claire Wright – who fought three previous elections but not this one – had supported Lib Dem candidates in the area.

“I want to pay tribute to Claire Wright, whose efforts in 2015, 2017 and 2019 are reflected in this result,” he said.

“What I have been hearing while campaigning is that people do not expect miracles of their politicians but they do expect a certain level of values and standards that have not been universally met in recent months and years.

“I expect to try and uphold some of those values and standards that have not been present in this parliament.”

He added that he would work “very hard” for all his constituents, “regardless of whether you supported me or not”.

Mr Jupp said his campaign had received a good response “but it was not good enough”.

“There was a very difficult national picture, and we worked hard here and I pay tribute to my staff,” he said.

“It’s worth remembering that it isn’t just the MP that loses their job when they are not re-elected, but their staff too.”

He acknowledge that other parties, including Reform UK, had impacted the Conservative vote, but he accepted that was democracy.

“And I’m a democrat,” he added.

“Democracy has been done and I wish my successor the very best.”

Asked what he would do now, Mr Jupp said “that’s for me to know, and you to find out”.

The full result is:

  • Jake BONETTA – Labour – 2,947
  • Vanessa COXON – Independent – 467
  • Hazel EXON – Party of Women – 244
  • Richard FOORD – Lib Dem – 23,007
  • Henry GENT – Green – 1,394
  • Simon JUPP – Conservative – 16,307
  • Paul QUICKENDEN – Reform UK – 6,289
     

Electorate: 75,537
Ballot papers issued: 50,792
Rejected ballot papers issued: 137
Turnout: 67.24 per cent

 

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