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Maidstone and Malling general election results 2024 in full

Helen Grant is one of the few Conservatives to hold onto a seat, winning Maidstone and Malling with 14,146 votes.

After more than six hours of validation, counting and recounting the Tories edged the new constituency, formed by a boundary change, by 1,674 votes.

Helen Grant celebrating with her team after winning the Maidstone and Malling seat
Helen Grant celebrating with her team after winning the Maidstone and Malling seat

Ms Grant said: “It’s very early in the morning so I want to keep this short, but I’m extremely honoured to be the MP for Maidstone and Malling.

“It’s a new seat and I will work very hard to achieve the issues and things that matter to you, the people of Kent and the people of this special constituency. I am so glad you trusted me.

“I’m absolutely delighted, over the moon, and very grateful. I had the most amazing campaign team.”

Ms Grant had held the Maidstone and Weald seat for 14 years.

She continued: “I am worried Keir Starmer said he would bulldoze the planning and regulation policy and declassify the greenbelt so we will be fighting from the word go to ensure we keep these special green spaces for our children and grandchildren to enjoy.”

It was a tight count with Labour candidate Maureen Cleator hot on her heels with 12,472 votes.

She said: “I’m incredibly proud of the team that worked so hard to achieve that result and it has been a great night for Labour across the country.

“I think we can do it in 2029 but with hard work.”

Ms Cleator says she will be pushing Ms Grant on the big issues as they rebuild for the next time they head to the ballot.

She continued: “This area has a lot of issues of overdevelopment of the wrong sort of houses.

“We need to look at social housing, social care, and our children’s services.

“We have county council elections next year so we will be pushing hard.

“I think it’s important to make people understand if you want to make things better you have to work for it.

“But for now like everyone we are tired and it’s time to get some sleep.”

The result was scheduled to be announced at 5am but with delays to some ballot boxes making their way to Maidstone Leisure Centre and a call for recounts the declaration was made an hour later.

Reform’s Paul Thomas took the third spot with 9,316 votes while the Lib Dem’s David Naghi followed in fourth with 6,375.

Maureen Cleator thanked the hard work on her campaign from her staff
Maureen Cleator thanked the hard work on her campaign from her staff

In total 46,526 votes were cast – 131 of which were spoilt - giving a final turnout of 60.86%.

The Lib Dem candidate reflected on the campaign and shared his frustrations after a strong showing in the local elections.

Mr Naghi said: “I was very confident because obviously there are no Labour councillors in this new constituency and we did very well locally.

“But with the boundary changes, trying to explain where people used to have MPs and where they have an MP as well as the post office getting mixed up and putting our leaflets in the wrong places it showed. Of the six elections I’ve done there is always something different.

“I think it has ruined our chances and in my view by the way it's going people are going to vote by what they see on the TV.”

David Naghi was critical on the electoral process
David Naghi was critical on the electoral process

But bucking the trend of Tory strongholds falling into the hands of the Labour resurgence, Ms Grant was relieved after a long night.

She said: “We did it. It was hard mentally and physically, but we got there.”

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