Third time lucky for Newmark
IT was a case of third time lucky for Conservative Brooks Newmark who took Braintree off Labour with a comfortable majority.The seat won by Alan Hurst originally in the 1997 Labour landslide victory was the third most marginal seat in the country.
IT was a case of third time lucky for Conservative Brooks Newmark who took Braintree off Labour with a comfortable majority.
The seat won by Alan Hurst originally in the 1997 Labour landslide victory was the third most marginal seat in the country. Hurst's majority in 2001 was just 358.
Newmark won convincingly with a 3,893 majority after 66.09 per cent of the electorate turned out to vote.
Father of five Newmark stood against Hurst in 2001 after contesting Newcastle Central in 1997.
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All six candidates behaved most gentlemanly at the declaration in Braintree Leisure Centre which came through at 3.30am.
Mr Newmark and the other candidates thanked Alan Hurst for his hard work representing the constituency.
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Mr Newmark, who will be 46 on Sunday, said: "I feel that four years of hard work has paid dividends. I've really worked hard since the day I didn't win. It has been a four-year campaign. I intent to be a strong voice for Braintree, Witham and for all the local communities."
He promised to be a "progressive Conservative" concerning himself with the most vulnerable in society.
Mr Hurst said he was not surprised by the result. "We were over the parapet before the battle started. If the Conservatives were to make any progress they had to make it in a seat like this."
But he took comfort from the fact that his vote was only down by 1,300 and Labour's position in Braintree was still greatly better than 10 and 15 years ago.
"I shall not be separated from Braintree. It will be my intention to work with Braintree Party and community groups. I've had a long association with this most wonderful part of the county and I've been proud to represent it."
Mr Hurst said one of the factors against him was the increasing development at Notley Garden Village.
Brooks Newmark (Con) 23,597
*Alan Hurst (Lab) 19,704
Peter Turner (LD) 7,037
James Abbott (Green) 1,308
Roger Lord (UKIP) 1,181
Michael Nolan (Ind) 228
Con gain from Lab
2001 result: Labour maj 358