Election results: UKIP top Euro vote in South West
00:11 26 May 2014
Two seats for UKIP and Tories, one each for Labour and the Greens, but none for the Lib Dems.
VOTERS in North Devon and Torridge gave UKIP a huge boost in the European elections.
The party topped the count in both local authority areas and across the South West as a whole with 32.29 per cent of the vote against the Conservatives’ 28.89 per cent.
They were followed by Labour (13.75 per cent); Green (11.10 per cent); Liberal Democrats (10.70 per cent); An Independence From Europe (1.55 per cent); English Democrats (1.01 per cent); and BNP (0.73 per cent).
UKIP retained two seats in the region, while there was a historic first ever South West seat for the Green party.
The Conservatives saw their local representation on the European Parliament cut from three to two, meaning there was no place for double Olympic gold medal winning rower James Cracknell.
Labour gained a South West seat, but there was huge disappointment for the Liberal Democrats’ Sir Graham Watson, who failed to hold onto the seat he first won in 1994.
Ashley Fox and Julie Girling held onto their seats for the Conservatives, as did UKIP’s William Dartmouth.
Other winners were Julia Reid (UKIP), Molly Scott Cato (Green), and Clare Moody (Labour).
Speaking shortly after the results were announced, Dr Scott Cato said: “The Greens are the only party with a clear and positive message on EU reform, which I think was attractive to voters and translated into the result we see today.”
Jubilant Barnstaple Green party candidate, Ricky Knight, said: “After 40 years of sustained effort to gain political credibility, this is a fantastic achievement.
“This country and most of Europe has lurched to the right but how rewarding to know that the 166,447 people who voted for us can now rest assured that their voice will be heard and represented by the South West’s very first Green MEP.”
In North Devon, UKIP polled 9,912 votes ahead of the Conservatives (7,434), Liberal Democrats (4,000); Greens (2,922); Labour (2,091); An Independence From Europe (418); English Democrats (310); and BNP (178).
In Torridge, UKIP polled 8,011 ahead of the Conservatives (5,706); Green Party (2,233); Labour (1,669); Liberal Democrats (1,596); An Independence From Europe (327); English Democrats (195); and BNP (132).
The turn-out in North Devon was 36.76 per cent, and 38.6 per cent in Torridge.