South Shields by-election: Labour wins as UKIP makes big gains


Labour's Emma Lewell-Buck: "I am absolutely ecstatic"

Labour has won the South Shields parliamentary by-election, retaining a seat it has held since 1935.

It saw its majority reduced in Thursday's poll as the UK Independence Party finished a clear second, with a 24% share of the total vote.

The Conservatives were pushed into third while their Liberal Democrat coalition partners finished seventh.

Labour candidate Emma Lewell-Buck said she was "absolutely ecstatic" about her by-election victory.

The South Shields contest was triggered by the resignation of former Labour Foreign Secretary David Miliband as an MP.

UKIP also made significant gains in county council elections in England.

'Here to stay'

Ms Lewell-Buck argued that the result showed Labour was connecting with voters and the coalition government was taking the country in the "wrong direction".

As the result was announced, she said: "Mr Cameron, when working families needed a government on their side, you made them pay for a tax cut for millionaires.

"When our young people needed jobs, you gave them a shrinking economy, and when the most vulnerable people in our society were really struggling you gave them the bedroom tax."

Ms Lewell-Buck added: "I will help get people back to work, champion our wonderful town and never give the Tory government one moment's peace."

However, her majority of 6,505 - on a turnout of 39.2% - was significantly down on the 11,109 achieved by Mr Miliband three years ago.


  • Emma Lewell-Buck (Labour) 12,493 votes
  • Richard Elvin (UK Independence Party) 5,988 votes
  • Karen Allen (Conservatives) 2,857 votes
  • Ahmed Khan (Independent) 1,331 votes
  • Phil Brown (Independent Socialist Party) 750 votes
  • Lady Dorothy Macbeth Brookes (BNP) 711 votes
  • Hugh Annand (Liberal Democrats) 352 votes
  • Howling Laud Hope (The Official Monster Raving Loony Party) 197 votes
  • Thomas Faithful Darwood (Independent) 57 votes

UKIP candidate Richard Elvin came second with 5,988 votes.

The party, which did not even stand in the constituency in the last general election, won 24% of the vote, marginally lower than its record 28% vote share in March's by-election in Eastleigh, Hampshire, when it also came second.

UKIP's deputy leader Paul Nuttall said the performance, which came on the heels of strong showings in other by-elections in the north of England last year, proved it was on "an upward trajectory" and the party's appeal spread across the country.

"UKIP is here and it is here to stay," he told the BBC.

Start Quote

The parties in government will comfort themselves that it's mid-term - people wanted to give them a bloody nose”

End Quote Louise Stewart Political correspondent, BBC News

And he claimed it would not be long before his party had its first MP elected.

"We have been knocking on the door of Westminster for the past two years. I predict very soon that we will kick that door in," he said.


The Conservatives came third with 2,857 votes, 5,000 fewer than they received in 2010 and it was an even more miserable night for the Lib Dems, who were beaten into seventh, getting fewer votes than the BNP and two independent candidates.

The party lost its deposit, having secured less than 5% of the total votes cast.

Its candidate Hugh Annand said the result was "extremely disappointing but perhaps not surprising" given that the Lib Dems were in government and having to take tough decisions.

He told the BBC that some supporters had not adjusted to the degree of compromise required in coalition and those wishing to register a protest vote had gone elsewhere.

UKIP deputy leader Paul Nuttall said his party is "going places"

"We have disappointed and angered some people who have supported us in the past," he said.

Former Lib Dem MP Lembit Opik, a frequent critic of party leader Nick Clegg, described the result as "appalling" and said party members "deserve to know how this electoral crisis will be fixed".

But the party's deputy leader Simon Hughes said: "Let me congratulate the Labour winner in South Shields, the first woman MP for South Shields, which is progress.

"This has been a Labour seat since it was created, certainly for years and years and years, and it's not a place where we had presence."

In the county council elections which coincided with the by-election, Conservative and Lib Dem vote share was significantly down, with UKIP and Labour the chief beneficiaries.

South Shields by-election result in full:
  • Emma Lewell-Buck (Labour): 12,493 (50.51%, -1.51%)
  • Richard Elvin (UK Independence Party): 5,988 (24.21%)
  • Karen Allen (Conservative): 2,857 (11.55%, -10.04%)
  • Ahmed Khan (Independent): 1,331 (5.38%)
  • Phil Brown (Independent Socialist): 750 (3.03%)
  • Lady Dorothy MacBeth Brookes (BNP): 711 (2.87%, -3.65%)
  • Hugh Annand (Liberal Democrat): 352 (1.42%, -12.79%)
  • Howling Laud Hope (The Official Monster Raving Loony Party): 197 (0.80%)
  • Thomas Darwood (Independent): 57 (0.23%)

Labour majority: 6,505 (26.30%), down from 11,109 (30.42%) in 2010

Electorate 62,979; Turnout 24,736 (39.28%, -18.42%), down from 36,518 (57.70%) in 2010



This entry is now closed for comments

Jump to comments pagination
  • rate this

    Comment number 189.

    From 163. Rockahula:
    "UKIP should be honest and just call themselves 'BNP Lite, the party for angry little Daily Mail readers who blame everything on someone else'. What spiteful, intolerant, uptight little island this is becoming...."

    Spot on. It's pathetic, if that's our 'strength' we're screwed. If we DO get change, people must start thinking about what they want, not what they don't want.

  • rate this

    Comment number 188.

    David Cameron: UKIP are 'A Bunch Of Fruitcakes, Loonies And Closet Racists.' No, Mr. Cameron, ex Conservatives like myself are just fed up to the back teeth with out of touch toffs running the country. You just don't get it do you?

  • rate this

    Comment number 187.

    Here's the most significant message to ALL parties.

    *** LABOUR WON ***"

    So what? A bag of potatoes with a red rosette on it would have won the South Shields by-election.

    In fact, listening to the stumbling semi-coherent rambling speech of the winner, I think South Shields would be better served by a pile of Maris Piper than by their new MP

  • rate this

    Comment number 186.

    Unfortunately, there were no elections in my part of the UK yesterday. I say "unfortunately" because I would have loved to have had the opportunity to put my "X" next to UKIP! I've had it up to here with Cleggeron and One Notion Lie-bor! "Ping-pong" government by these parties over the decades has inexorably led to the mess this country now finds itself in. It's time to listen to the people!

  • rate this

    Comment number 185.

    All 3 parties can close their eyes and put their fingers in their ears as much as they want. But Immigration is the main factor here, we cannot go on the way we are or we will not have a welfare state, NHS or local services worth a jot if we allow extra strain that mass migration brings. As for Labour they should hang their heads in shame on the betrayal of its core base of working class voters.

  • rate this

    Comment number 184.

    It said on radio 4 this morning that old people and the uneducated voted UKIP....I.e nasty racists and peasants....

  • rate this

    Comment number 183.

    UKIP making gains, BNP above the Lib Dems too. England is going mad.

  • rate this

    Comment number 182.

    Hello UKIP, goodbye EU and human rights? What a terrifying prospect that is. Beware Farage, beware the EDL, beware creeping racism and fascism. And wake up to the calculated and cynical scapegoating and demonisation of immigrants and Islam. We live in dangerous times.

  • rate this

    Comment number 181.

    Never mind the Looney Left, the Rabid Right are spouting their ill informed voice today. UKIP have no policies other than the EU, they are the party of the far right, be very careful of the Pandoras box you may be opening.

  • rate this

    Comment number 180.

    ....we now realise that we will be a minority in our own country by 2050. We need more that two main parties trading places at each election with Lib-Dems filling in the spaces. We want positive action that will take us out of this mess that we are in. Someone strong enough to take us forward and I don't care what party they represent. We are running out of time. Someone go and fetch Mr Churchill

  • rate this

    Comment number 179.

    I feel sorry for all of those lefties at the BBC, bad night for them but they'll no doubt keep offering up their lefty bias. UKIP gains just go to show how unpopular Labour is now, even with the Tories being forced to make horrible decisions to get us out of the Labour government mess.

  • rate this

    Comment number 178.

    We all knew Labour would retain the seat but the remainder of the vote shows that the population is sick and tired of the PC style of politics (i.e all things to all men) introduced by Blair and continued by Cameron.
    The Country is now seeking a real leader, I hope one will emerge before the next election! Farage is currently showing the way.

  • rate this

    Comment number 177.

    If UKIP were to have any level of control, then my partner who is Irish and has been living here for two years would have to leave (Minimum of 5 years to apply to stay). She is an engineer, but most people do not think of her as a 'migrant' as she is white and speaks English. It is racism and narrow mindedness dressed up. UKIP is not a viable option when you read their policies properly.

  • rate this

    Comment number 176.

    Firstly well done Labour. But UKIP, are hear to stay! More good news labour, lets face it ukip will take far,far more votes from the tory pile than the labour 1. A lovely bit of divide and rule! I can hear Camaroon! Saying " Vote UKIP, Get Labour" even now. But the brutal truth is a large section of us back UKIP`s policies, i.e out the EU and actually reduce immigration the tory rite will love it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 175.

    77.Doug Stanhope
    "As it happens, I don't have much time for the remaining parties either, so I deliberately spoilt my ballot paper but at least I turned up at the poling station and showed willing."

    Spoilt ballot papers count for nothing so you wasted your time unfortunately. I do, however, admire your principles and effort.

  • rate this

    Comment number 174.

    Why would anybody with a job and their own house vote Labour. Unless they worked for the BBC of course. Labour are no longer the party of the working man/woman in this country. They have proved that time and time again. They are the party of the Giro brigade and the immigrant. No wonder they do nothing to end the benefit culture council estates. They depend on them to cling to power.

  • rate this

    Comment number 173.

    I wonder how Labour manages to get so many postal votes ? Particular in West Lancashire, East Yorkshire and the East End of London.

  • rate this

    Comment number 172.

    148 SamG

    'I have no idea how people could have voted for UKIP. If they did then it is clear they haven't read their manifesto on the UKIP website which, really, is a joke.'

    I have no idea how people could have voted for Labour. If they did then it is clear they haven't read their manifesto on the Labour website which, really, is a joke.

    PLUS Labour have a track record of rank incompetence.

  • rate this

    Comment number 171.

    4 out of 10 people in the area voted. Seems more like a vote for apathy to me. Still, now is the chance for the moaners to do something about it. Looks like you only need to persuade 10,000 people to your way of thinking to get in. But then most would rather sit back and moan.

  • rate this

    Comment number 170.

    Does anyone know what the UKIP's policies are other than Out of Europe. I don't! I know they are against a lot of things, I don't know what they stand for.


Page 37 of 46


More Politics stories



Try our new site and tell us what you think. Learn more
Take me there

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.