Liberal Democrat Martin Wrigley has ousted the Conservative’s Anne-Marie Morris to become the new MP for the Newton Abbot constituency.

The Liberal Democrat took the seat with a 15,201 majority ending 14 years of Conservative power in the constituency.

‘This has been a momentous day,’ he said.

General Election.  Newton Abbot count. The declaration is made at Newton Abbot Racecourse  - and Anne Marie Morris has certainly been carved up
General Election. Newton Abbot count. The declaration is made at Newton Abbot Racecourse - and Anne Marie Morris has certainly been carved up (Steve Pope/MDA)

Wrigley thanked the voters of the Newton Abbot constituency for putting their trust in him to be their representative in Parliament. ‘I will do my best for you, our constituency, and our country, he promised in a speech after the results were declared.

‘The country has changed after today. Now we have hope that things will start to get better,’ he continued.

Wrigley outlined his plans: to get the new government to enable more councils to build more council homes; to get the water companies to stop pumping raw sewage into our rivers and seas and to stop them putting shareholders before customers and the environment.

‘It’s not going to be easy,’ he admitted. ‘But now we can start to make a brighter future.’

Conservative Anne-Marie Morris, who has been MP of Newton Abbot since 2010, garnered 12,955 votes. Morris took the seat in the 2010 General Election after gaining a 523 vote majority over Liberal Democrat Richard Younger-Ross.

Reform UK candidate Christopher Hilditch polled 8,494 votes, reflecting the national sentiment with many Conservative Party voters switching to the right-wing party. Reform UK leader Nigel Farage visited Newton Abbot’s Trago Mills on the campaign trail earlier this month.

Labour candidate, 20-year-old student Jacob Cousens received 7,115 votes, down from James Osben’s 9,329 in the 2019 General Election. However, his party is on track for a landslide victory across the UK.

The Green Party increased their share of the vote compared with the last General Election in 2019 with 2,083 voters opting for Pauline Wynter. In 2019, the Green Party candidate, Megan Debenham, received 1,508 votes.

Results for the other three candidates standing for the Newton Abbot constituency were: Liam Mullone (South Devon Alliance) 1,924; Andre Sabine (Heritage Party) 116; and Annaliese Cude (Volt United Kingdom) 104.

Turnout for the Newton Abbot constituency was 65.2% with 48,155 votes cast from an electorate of 73,885. This is down from the 2019 General Election when turnout in Newton Abbot was 72.7%

Martin Wrigley is currently a Devon County Councillor, leader of Teignbridge District Council and a councillor for the Dawlish North East ward. He previously served as mayor of Dawlish. He moved to Teignbridge with his young family 25 years ago and he has been involved in community politics since 2013. His professional background is in high-tech industry.

Now that Martin Wrigley has been elected as an MP, a by-election will have to be held in Dawlish North East.