Burnham defiant after latest victory

Andy Burnham

Andy Burnham

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LABOUR candidate Andy Burnham comfortably secured a fourth term in the House of Commons with an increased majority on a bad night for his party.

Mr Burnham secured his place as Leigh’s MP with 24,312 votes, with runner-up Louisa Townson polling 10,216 votes for the Conservatives.

Andy Burnham's victory speech

Andy Burnham's victory speech

Ukip candidate Les Leggett came third with 8,903, with Bill Winlow fourth for the Libeeral Democrats and Stephen Hall fifth for Left Unity.

In his victory speech Mr Burnham said he would continue to fight for the town and attacked the difficulties ordinary people face.

Mr Burnham said: “Tonight Leigh has roared back. It is wrong that any child is fed by a foodbank, that vulnerable people go into debt because they happen to have a spare room in their house, that young people have their dream of university snatched away, that our ambulance services have been privatised without anybody asking the permission of the people.

“This election will be remembered for the rise of nationalism in Scotland, Wales and here in England too, but I send notice that I believe in Leigh and Britain and will be fighting for both in the next five years.”

Tonight Leigh has roared back. It is wrong that any child is fed by a foodbank, that vulnerable people go into debt because they happen to have a spare room in their house, that young people have their dream of university snatched away, that our ambulance services have been privatised without anybody asking the permission of the people

Andy Burnham

Speaking after the results, Mr Burnham said being elected felt “tremendous” and spoke of being humbled at the prospect of representing Leigh in Parliament once again.

On a night when Labour struggled in key seats in England and were resoundingly beaten in Scotland Mr Burnham also strongly backed party leader Ed Miliband and denied he had aspirations for the top job.

Mr Burnham said: “The only job I want is to be health secretary in Ed Miliband’s government.

“He has led a strong campaign and he is the leader who has connected with people and issues they care about.”

Result

LEIGH

Andy Burnham (LAB) 24,312

Stephen Hall (LU) 542

Les Leggett (UKIP) 8,903

Louisa Townson (CON) 10,216

Bill Winlow (LD) 1,150

Turnout (%)59.6

Swing LAB hold, increased majority