In what may be the last general election in the Ludlow constituency, Philip Dunne has been elected MP for Ludlow for the fourth time. He gained 31,432 votes (63% of the vote), with an increased majority of 19,285. No one expected him to lose.
The real action in this campaign was for second place. Labour had high hopes for Julia Buckley. She was a good performer in the hustings and came in second, with a respectable 12,147 votes. Heather Kidd, representing the Liberal Democrats, came third with 5,336 votes. Green candidate Hilary Wendt was fourth with 1,054 votes.
Across the county, the Conservatives held on to all five seats.
Today’s result in Ludlow will be cheering for Labour. It will a blow for the Liberal Democrats who had not expected to win but had hoped to return to second position after the punishing election of 2015.
That election saw the Lib Dem vote collapse to just 13%, having averaged 37% over the previous four elections. Labour has averaged 14% over the last five elections. Now they are on 24%, a level they haven’t reached since 2005. Today’s result will considerably strengthen and cheer the local Labour team.
Philip Dunne will not have been expecting to lose. He will have gained from the absence of a UKIP candidate (and if UKIP had stood, they wouldn’t have got many votes). He is to be congratulated on his substantial majority and on holding the seat since 2005. But he will be returning to a House of Commons with a significantly weakened prime minister – but that’s another story.
The local results
- Ludlow. Conservative Philip Dunne has retained his seat. Full results.
- Shrewsbury and Atcham. Conservative Daniel Kawczynski has retained his seat. Full results.
- Shropshire North. Conservative Owen Paterson has retained his seat. Full results.
- Telford. Conservative Lucy Allen retained her seat. Full results.
- The Wrekin. Conservative Mark Pritchard retained his seat. Full results.
The 1997-2017 results
By the time of the next general election, there is every chance that the Boundaries Commission will have abolished the Ludlow constituency. Here in Ludlow town, we will be part of the new Ludlow and Leominster constituency. If this happens, the political demographics will still be Tory leaning but the Liberal vote will strengthen. The Labour vote will weaken. Bridgnorth is set to be shovelled in to another new constituency with Wellington and Wrekin. That’s likely to strengthen the Labour vote.