General Election 2019: Sam Tarry ‘humbled’ to be elected by hometown constituency of Ilford South
PUBLISHED: 14:15 13 December 2019
Ilford South’s new Labour MP Sam Tarry described it as “the honour of his life” to be elected to represent the people of Ilford South – the constituency that he grew up in.
The residents of Ilford South bid farewell to veteran MP Mike Gapes after 27 years when they elected Labour's chosen candidate Mr Tarry with 35,085 votes.
Mr Gapes, who left the Labour Party in February to help create the Independent Group for Change, placed third in the constituency with 3,891 votes, behind Conservative candidate Ali Azeem on 10,984.
Lib Dem Ashburn Holder earned 1,795, The Brexit Party's Munish Sharma 1,008 and Green candidate Rosemary Warrington 714.
Turnout fell to 62.9pc, down from 2017's 69.9pc.
Giving his election address, the trade union official - who helped run Jeremy Corbyn's second internal Labour Party leadership campaign - praised his supporters for their successful campaigning.
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He said: "We showcased the best of Ilford, the best of Redbridge, and the very best of modern Britain.
"I would also like to thank all the council staff who put so much effort into making tonight go ahead and ensuring that, no matter what, democracy always prevails.
"I am so humbled that every corner of this constituency has shown such faith in me, and I promise that I will deliver on my word to each and every one of you.
"It will be the honour of my life to represent the place I grew up in, where I went to school, where I had my first job, where I joined a trade union, and where i organised my first political meeting while working at Sainsbury's as a 21-year-old and where I later joined the Labour Party."
And, in the face of poor Labour performances across the rest of the country, Mr Tarry remained defiant.
He added: "I want to make it clear right here and right now, that as a party - the Labour Party - we will continue to fight for what we believe in.
"For the people that desperately need a Labour government. They will not be forgotten.
"The policies we put forward were enormously popular, they were transformative and one day will be realised if we are to have any chance of ending the record levels of inequality in our community and across our country, and stop the devastating impact of climate change."