General election 2017: Results and news from north Essex

Counting at the Clacton Town Hall in the 2017 general election. Picture: WILL LODGE

Counting at the Clacton Town Hall in the 2017 general election. Picture: WILL LODGE - Credit: Archant

Results and general election news from north Essex as it happens

Votes will be counted tonight. Picture: RUI VIEIRA/PA WIRE

Votes will be counted tonight. Picture: RUI VIEIRA/PA WIRE - Credit: PA

Tonight our reporters will be live at election counts across north Essex – including Clacton, Colchester and Harwich and north Essex – as votes are counted in the 2017 general election.

Here, they will be bringing you all the latest updates – predictions and reactions – and most importantly the results from the counts.

HARWICH AND NORTH ESSEX: Candidates have started arriving for the count in Colchester, including Harwich and north Essex candidate Aaron Hammond.

Mr Hammond is the constituency’s youngest to put himself forward for the vote and, although he says tonight will be “nerve-racking”, hopes he will do “fairly well.”

The general election is on June 8

The general election is on June 8


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He said: “It’s quite nerve-racking especially because it’s my first general election and the first time I’ve been able to stand.

“I got quite a good response from people and have had quite a lot of phone calls asking me why they should vote for me and what I can bring.”

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Mr Hammond said keeping Harwich’s hospital and fire station open and making sure enough police are on the streets were important to his campaign.

Counting at the Clacton Town Hall in the 2017 general election. Picture: WILL LODGE

Counting at the Clacton Town Hall in the 2017 general election. Picture: WILL LODGE - Credit: Archant

COLCHESTER: The Green Party candidate for Colchester says he hopes the party can become part of the next government if tonight’s election results in a hung parliament.

Mark Goacher said: “I’m feeling very excited because the exit poll is indicating it could be a hung parliament so the possible outcomes of that are so unclear that it’s going to be an exciting night, and in terms of the Greens it looks like Caroline Lucas has kept her seat in Brighton by the predictions, so that is positive.

“What I’m hoping is that the Greens are able to be part of any government that comes out of this.”

He did, however, add that the party’s support might slump because of previous protest votes.

He said: “I think we will probably go down a bit because a lot of very left-wing people who maybe last time voted for the Greens as a protest vote will now vote for Labour under Jeremy Corbyn, so if we go down that will be the reason why.”

CLACTON: Giles Watling swept to victory for the Conservatives in Clacton – as his party took back the seat it lost in 2014.

The Tory candidate racked up 62% of the votes and a majority of 15,828 over Labour candidate Tasha Osben.

Ukip, which had held the seat since 2014 when the then-Tory MP Douglas Carswell defected, and then won the resulting by-election – and held the seat in the 2015 general election – was pushed back to third place.

The result could signal a return to the traditional two-party race seen in Clacton prior to 2014.

Mr Watling, who said he would be carrying on as a Tendring district councillor for the time being, said: “It is amazing, very humbling and I am surprisingly emotional.

“I have fought this seat twice in the past three years and I have been returned with a cracking majority.”

The turnout here is 63.8%, slightly down on the 64.4% from the 2015 election.

COLCHESTER: The Liberal Democrat candidate for Colchester, Sir Bob Russell, says he is prepared it is “unlikely” he has won a seat this evening.

The candidate, who served his constituency for 18 years before the 2015 election, says British politics is “polarising” and that being a Liberal Democrat in 2017 “is a very tough assignment”.

He said: “I’m very relaxed that it’s all over and I’m told it’s unlikely I’ve won. It would appear that what is happening across the country is that we are returning to a two-party dominance and that smaller parties are being marginalised.”

Sir Bob added that Jeremy Corbyn has been able to “galvanise” young people, and that this might have had an impact in Colchester with it being a university town.

The candidate also said Theresa May had “screwed up” and believes she has not shown herself to be “strong and stable” but “weak and feeble”.

COLCHESTER: Colchester’s Labour candidate says he is “very hopeful” ahead of the election results tonight.

Tim Young said: “It looks like we might not quite have made it but it’s an incredible turnaround from the 2015 result and we are going to push the Tories very close here.

“The exit poll – there was great glee in our house when we saw that and it seems across the country people have rejected Theresa May’s endorsement of leadership and Jeremy Corbyn has fought a magnificent campaign and people were inspired and motivated by what Labour had to say.”

Mr Young added that Theresa May’s campaign has been “shambolic” and “clumsy and awkward”.

We will also be keeping you up-to-date on the national picture.

• If you prefer a live article format, click here.

You can also follow the election in Suffolk and north Essex at our Facebook page, which will include live video interviews with candidates and the declarations as they come in.

• Essex is currently mostly Conservative, with only the independent seat of Clacton breaking the sea of blue on the party map. But could Labour, the Liberal Democrats, Greens or Ukip make a gain?

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