Salford local elections.

The political map of the North West was dramatically redrawn overnight with the Conservatives making a series of gains from Labour.

While Salford, Manchester and Merseyside remained loyal to Labour the surrounding constituencies turned blue with victory often decided by a few hundred votes.

Labour losses in the region included Bury South, Bolton North East, Heywood and Middleton, Leigh, High Peak, Warrington South, Burnley, Hyndburn and Blackpool South

Labour’s David Crausby lost Bolton North East by 378 votes to Tory candidate Mark Logan who polled 19,759.

In Bury South Conservative Christian Wakeford snatched victory from Labour candidate Lucy Burke by 848 votes. He said: “We do have to get our Brexit deal through first so we can start focussing on the priorities of the people.”

He added he had a positive campaign and now planned to deliver on promises to regenerate high streets, protect green belts and to deliver a new high school for Radcliffe.

Andy Carter for the Conservatives narrowly beat Labour’s Faisal Rashid with a winning tally of 28,187.

Meanwhile, in Heywood and Middleton Conservative candidate Chris Clarkson polled 20,453 votes, scooping a majority of 663 votes over Labour’s Liz McInnes.

Antony Higginbotham became Burnley’s first Conservative MP for 100 years by polling 15,720 votes and pushing Labour’s Julie Cooper into second place by little more than a 1,000 majority.

Shadow minister Gordon Marsden had been battling to hold on to In Blackpool South, the seat he first won in Labour’s landslide 1997 election and kept in 2017 with a majority of 2,523.

He was beaten last night by Conservative Scott Benton who polled 16, 247 votes and has a majority of 3,690.

Further afield in Cumbria the constituencies of Workington and Barrow-in-Furness were also lost by Labour to the Tories.

After being re-elected to her Manchester Central seat, Labour MP Lucy Powell said the party needed to look “deeply and profoundly” at what went wrong.

She said: “That means an honest, objective, serious analysis about what has gone wrong and how we can reshape our party for the future so that we can once again deliver what the people of Manchester Central want and that is a Labour government doing radical and brilliant things for our city.”

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