Liberal Democrats turn Twickenham and Richmond Park gold in general election


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Sarah Olney and Munira Wilson won thumping majorities to be elected as the new Liberal Democrat MPs in Richmond Park and Twickenham. 

After missing out on holding her seat by just 45 votes at the general election in 2017, Sarah (pictured above left on election night) ousted Tory Brexit-backer Zac Goldsmith to return to parliament to represent Richmond Park. This time the margin of victory was decisive, at 7,766.

Vince Cable’s decision to stand down 22 years after first being elected to represent Twickenham meant a new name on the ballot paper in the constituency. Munira (pictured above right) held the seat with an increased majority of 14,121. 

After her victory, Sarah said: “I’m beyond delighted and humbled to have been re-elected as the MP for Richmond Park - thank you to all the voters who have placed their trust in me.

“But I’m desperately sad to hear of our party leader Jo Swinson losing her seat. She fought courageously for what she believed in and was an inspirational force for the Lib Dems.”

Munira said: “A massive thank you to the residents of Twickenham, Whitton, Teddington, St Margarets and Hampton for putting their trust in me to serve as their new MP. I'm honoured and deeply humbled.

“I’m delighted to be joining Sarah Olney on the green benches - all of Richmond is gold again!”

Vote share across London rose by 6 points, with Ed Davey in neighbouring Kingston doubling his majority. But Tom Brake, who did so much to lead the fight to stop Brexit, narrowly lost his seat in Carshalton and Wallington. 

Siobhan Benita, Lib Dem spokesperson on London and our candidate for next year's mayoral election, said: "I know that for millions of people across London and the country as a whole, the future seems bleak right now. I've spent the past weeks zig-zagging London, having hundreds of conversations with voters. Countless people I spoke to were in despair at both the main parties. Preventing Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn from getting into Downing Street was their overriding objective. Faced with our first-past-the-post voting system and an onslaught of conflicting, often misleading, information about tactical voting, many people were unsure how to vote, even on the eve of poll. 

"In what was clearly a disappointing result for the Liberal Democrats nationally, the London picture is far more positive.  Our vote share in the capital is up by 6%, compared to decreases of 6% for Labour and 1% for the Tories. We unseated Zac Goldsmith in Richmond Park and we've made significant inroads into what were previously Tory and Labour strongholds in both central and outer London. And this election has grown and galvanised our membership base, with thousands of new and active supporters reaching into areas where we've never been before. My best wishes go to candidates and their teams, not just to those who won but also to the many others who fought admirable campaigns and who did our democracy proud over the past weeks.  

"As we look ahead to next year, it’s clear that our politics is still in need of a strong and liberal centre ground.  I joined the Liberal Democrats to help build that and I look forward to running a mayoral campaign, which epitomises the kind, inclusive and exciting future that Londoners demand and deserve."


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