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Labour’s Michelle Welsh named new MP for Sherwood Forest

Labour’s Michelle Welsh is the new MP for Sherwood Forest, turning the seat red for the first time in over a decade.

The results were announced by acting returning officer Sue Bearman after the count concluded at Dukeries Leisure Centre, Ollerton in the early hours of July 5.

The seat —previously Sherwood — has been held by Conservative Mark Spencer for the past 14 years, since 2010, who most recently retained it in 2019 with a majority of 16,186 — and a total of 32,049 votes.

Labour's Michelle Welsh is the new MP for Sherwood Forest.
Labour's Michelle Welsh is the new MP for Sherwood Forest.

Ms Welsh took the seat with a 5,443 majority to Mr Spencer, who came in second with 13,398 votes.

Exit polls predicted a 99% chance of a Labour gain for the constituency.

Speaking after her victory, Ms Welsh said she wanted to return to “politics for service”, focusing on being active in the community and being a voice for Sherwood Forest in Westminster.

She said: “We have spoken to absolutely thousands of people while out campaigning and it has been an absolute pleasure to meet so many of you. I know the last 14 years have been so difficult, but I am here to serve you.

“We must bring back politics for service, where everybody serves their commuities and not themselves.

“Thank you to every single person who voted for me and put their trust in me — but whether you voted for me or not I will work tirelessly for you interests, I will not let you down, and I will be your voice in Westminster, and a strong representative for the whole of Sherwood.

“There will be many people who have voted for Labour for the first time at this election and I will deliver the change that you have voted for. This is a vote for a Labout party that is focussed on the priorities of the working people.”

She listed priorities including safer streets, economic security, cheaper bills and secure borders.

She also thanked her campaign team and supporters, and paid tribute to Mr Spencer who she said had “worked valiantly over 14 years” as MP.

She added: “Tonight is the start of a new chapter for this nation, a sign of hope for our future and our childrens future… I’m so proud to be the first ever woman Labour MP for Sherwood Forest.”

She pledged to “break down the barriers to opportunity” and said she believed “our best days lie ahead of us”.

Mr Spencer wished her well in the role.

He said: “I’m sure you will do a great job, and I wish you all the best in what will be a very difficult time going forward.”

He also thanked the people of Sherwood for giving him “a great time over the last 14 years”.

Below are the full results for each candidate:

David Paul Dobbie (Liberal Democrats): 1,838

Shelia Greatrex-White (Green Party): 2,216

Helen Rose O’Hare (Reform UK): 11,320

Mark Steven Spencer (Conservative): 13,398

Jeremy Paul Spry (Independent): 183

Lee Waters (Independent): 864

Michelle Welsh (Labour): 18,841

The total number of ballot papers received was 48,821 which represents a turnout of 61.88%.

The total number of rejected ballot papers was 161.

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