Poulter wins Central Suffolk and Ipswich North

THE Conservatives have held onto the Central Suffolk and North Ipswich seat.

After 27 years Central Suffolk and North Ipswich have a new MP, conservative Dr Dan Poulter.

A Tory seat since 1983, the constituency will remain in conservative hands under the new government.

Around 300 council staff counted the ballot papers from 104 polling stations including pubs, churches, a caravan and a container, under the watchful eye of Acting Returning Officer Andrew Good.

At 2.40am High Sheriff of Suffolk Theresa Innes declared Dr Poulter had secured the seat for his party.

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Winning 27,125 of the 53,482 votes cast, he said he was surprised by his “huge” majority.

Toasting his success with elderflower cordial, the self-confessed tee-totaller Dr Poulter said: “I thought we would do well because of the positive response we recieved on the doorstep, but to get 51% of the vote is a huge endorsement from the constituency.

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“I was quite humbled. The work starts now to repay that trust the voters have put in me.”

With a majority of 13,786 (please check) the contest for second place was won by Lib Dem Andrew Aalders-Dunthorne.

With 13,339 votes he beat Labour candidate Bhvana Joshi by 4,703 votes.

Vowing to “hit the ground running straight away” Dr Poulter said in his first as an MP he would put together a programme of work to build relationships with his fellow MP’s elected in Suffolk to bring high speed broad band to rural areas, improve the transport and rail links as well as ensuring the “bread and butter” hospital services, including cancer services and heart attack care stays at Ipswich Hospital.

Inspired to stand as an MP after meeting David Cameron, Dr Poulter, a locum gynaecologist at the James Paget Hospital in Gorleston, said his background in medicine and his law degree has given him a “variety of life” which will give him a good grounding.

“I felt I could get more done as a politician than as another doctor. I believe in the freedom of the individual and I believe we have to have a safety net to look after the most disadvantaged.

“My first job is to represent my constituency and my constituents, putting them first is my priority.”

But he emphasised he will not be ignoring the urban part of his constituency.

He has plans for two surgeries each month in north Ipswich.

“I am very aware that this is not just a rural constituency. I am looking to support the campaign to save Broomhill pool, also the issues surrounding Ipswich Hospital are something I am particularly interested in and are very high in my thoughts.”

The turnout in Central Suffolk and North Ipswich was 70.6% across the three local councils, Mid Suffolk District Council, Suffolk Coastal and Ipswich Borough.

That is 4% up on the turnout recorded at the last general election in 2005.

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