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Labour overturns 24 years of Tory control as it wins home of the British Army

Labour has received a key breakthrough in the home of the British Army for the first time, suggesting it is on course for a seismic general election win.

In a landmark outcome, Sir Keir Starmer’s get together clinched Rushmoor council, overturning 1 / 4 of a century of Tory control to safe its first-ever majority.

The district consists of Aldershot Garrison, a navy city which has been thought-about the home of the British Army since it was in-built 1854.

Labour stated its historic victory proved the get together has moved on since its days beneath Jeremy Corbyn and was now trusted by voters on defence.

But the outcome will immediate alarm in No 10 as it suggests even the most secure of Conservative seats will probably be beneath menace at the general election.

A Labour spokesman stated: “This is a truly historic result. Rushmoor – the home of the British Army – has never had a majority Labour council before, and has been run by the Tories for the last 24 years.

“This result demonstrates just how much the Labour Party has changed and people in Rushmoor know that only Labour can deliver the change they want to see.

“A Labour gain for Rushmoor is a result Rishi Sunak cannot ignore. It’s time for a general election.”

Labour received 9 of the 13 seats being contested on Rushmoor Borough Council, with the Tories successful simply three and the Liberal Democrats taking the different.

The outcome suggests the parliamentary constituency of Aldershot, which has been Tory ever since its creation in 1918, may very well be in play at the election.

Leo Docherty, the Europe minister, is the present MP and received a close to 17,000 majority over his Labour rival in 2019.

Aldershot is quantity 216 on the checklist of Labour goal seats, requiring a 17 per cent swing, and successful it would counsel Sir Keir was heading in the right direction for a landslide.

Reform UK may additionally play a defining position in the future of a constituency the place the UK Independence Party got here narrowly in third at the 2015 election.

The end in Rushmoor got here on one more dire night time for the Tories, who also lost the Blackpool South by-election to Labour by an enormous 22 per cent swing.

Labour additionally clinched Hartlepool council from the Tories in a symbolic outcome which represented the latter’s altering fortunes in the Red Wall.

It was three years in the past {that a} huge Boris Johnson balloon was floated in the city as the Tories took the parliamentary seat from Labour in a by-election.

The former prime minister’s success in the North East even compelled Sir Keir into ideas of resigning and appeared to cement a brand new Conservative dominance.

But the tables have now turned with the Tories struggling to carry onto the coalition of new voters throughout the North and Midlands that they received in 2019.

Labour chalked up one other council win in Thurrock, Essex, in an extra signal that it is on monitor to safe a 1997-style landslide at the subsequent election.

The parliamentary seat in Thurrock, held by Tory MP Dame Jackie Doyle-Price, has been blue since 2010 and was final purple throughout the New Labour years.

Labour's Chris Webb celebrates with his wife and daughter after defeating the Tories in Blackpool SouthLabour's Chris Webb celebrates with his wife and daughter after defeating the Tories in Blackpool South

Labour’s Chris Webb celebrates together with his spouse and daughter after defeating the Tories in Blackpool South – Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Thurrock was one of the most closely Leave-supporting areas in the nation, with the outcome suggesting Sir Keir has put his get together’s Brexit woes behind it.

A Labour Party spokesperson stated: “This is exactly the kind of place we need to be winning to gain a majority in a general election.

“The people of Thurrock have sent the Conservatives a message that they want change.”

Andrew Jefferies, the outgoing Tory chief of Thurrock council, stated that Rishi Sunak wanted to “give people a reason to vote Conservative”.

He instructed the BBC: “We’re very disappointed in the result that we’ve had this evening. It was to be expected, all the polls were telling us that that was going to happen.

“The Conservative Party, the Government, need to give people a reason to vote Conservative. At the moment people feel disheartened and disappointed.

“We need a reason to vote and I believe the Prime Minister will set out and give people that reason again.”

Pat McFadden MP, Labour’s National Campaign Coordinator, stated: “These results show that Labour is making progress in the places needed that will decide the general election.

“The Tories needed to be making gains in an election year. Instead, their vote has collapsed in a key by-election and they are suffering losses of council seats. Responsibility for this sits firmly with Rishi Sunak who is being punished by voters for the Tories’ failure.

“These results are sending a clear message that people across the country are demanding change, and only the Labour Party will deliver that. It’s time for a general election now.”

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