A DELIGHTED Karen Lumley, reflecting shortly after the announcement of her stunning victory early on Friday morning,” said: “I am absolutely thrilled to bits, and I’m thrilled I managed to increase my majority. That is not something that I thought of this morning (Thursday).
“We saw last night that people were coming out to talk to us in droves, they were queueing outside polling stations. They wanted us to carry on with some more of the same.
Asked why she thought the swing to the Conservatives had been so large, she said: “The economy was the biggest issue towards the end of the campaign.
“I’ve just spent five years in Parliament opposite the Labour party who never talked about the economy at all and had no credible measures throughout the campaign, and you know, the British people aren’t stupid.
“This is seat here in Redditch is always a marginal seat, although obviously in Tory terms now it might be the safe seat.
“As always here we fight campaigns in a very good way, and I’m looking forward to seeing today’s (Friday) local councils elections results.”
A disappointed Rebecca Blake, the Labour Party candidate, speaking minutes after the result, said: “I am disappointed but its something to build on and we had a lot of new helpers, a really great team.
“It has been a wonderful experience and we just have to reflect on how we can do it differently because I know that people have significant problems out there, they need a voice and we have to work on how we are that voice.
“I am very disappointed with what has happened nationally.
“It certainly wasn’t expected, I guess as a sort of three-party country, maybe with the collapse of the Lib Dem’s then its all up for question.
“We were in unchartered territory but certainly as a party we have to reflect and work really hard to get back.
“I’m going to have a good think about coming back but the Labour party is not going away.”
How the votes were shared out:
Rebecca Blake – 31.1 per cent
Seth Colton – 0.38 per cent
Peter Jewell – 16.2 per cent
Karen Lumley – 47.1 per cent
Hilary Myers – 3.05 per cent
Kevin White 2.17 per cent