Election 2017: Conservative Mike Freer keeps Finchley and Golders Green seat but majority slashed by thousands
PUBLISHED: 15:09 09 June 2017 | UPDATED: 15:18 09 June 2017
The Conservative Party’s Mike Freer won a third term in Finchley and Golders Green last night, but his majority has been slashed.
Mr Freer saw his majority cut by 5,000 compared to the 2010 election, polling 24,599 votes – 1,657 ahead of his Labour Party rival Jeremy Newmark but almost 4 per cent down on the last election.
In response to a dramatic night which saw the Tories lose their overall majority, Mr Freer said: “Tonight we are seeing some extraordinary results and I am naturally disappointed to have a reduced majority.
“But I have to say that I will redouble my efforts to work for my constituents to ensure their concerns are represented in Parliament.”
The 57-year-old vowed to prioritise housing, schools and the NHS as part of his commitment to Finchley and Golders Green.
Describing his election as “humbling”, Mr Freer thanked his supporters, agent and husband before paying tribute to the community he serves.
“This constiuency is my home and I believe it is the most wonderful constituency because it is vibrant, diverse and an exemplar of how those of faith and no faith can live together.”
Earlier in the night, Jeremy Newmark looked set to take the seat, but fell short polling 22,942, a 4pc increase on 2015’s result.
After expressing his congratulations, the Labour rival launched an attack saying Freer’s reduced majority “sends out a clear message people here want an MP aligned with their values and not just their interests”.
“People here want to reject the politics of resentment and intolerance that has sadly become part and parcel of the Brexit discourse. Some of that comes from people feeling marginalised and unrepresented,” he said.
The fortunes of smaller parties were mixed with the Green Party candidate Adele Ward polling 919 votes falling from 1,357 at the last election.
UKIP – whose candidate Andrew Price was not on the stand when the results were announced – also saw a huge drop in its share with 462 votes cast whereas in 2015 the party polled 1,732.
The Liberal Democrat candidate Jonathan Davies saw his votes more than double from 1,662 two years ago to 3,463.
“The Liberal Democrats are starting their climb back. I rather suspect we will be back here in less than five years,” he said.
The seat swung back to the Conservatives when Mike Freer took the seat beating Labour’s Alison Moore in 2010. Before then Rudi Vis took the seat from Tory John Marshall in Labour’s 1997 landslide before getting mixed up in the MPs expenses scandal in 2009.
This year’s turnout crept up 2pc compared to 2015 with 72pc of constituents voting.
Conservative: Mike Freer – 24,599 (47pc)
Labour: Jeremy Newmark – 22,942 (43.8pc)
Liberal Democrat: Jonathan Davies – 3,463 (6.6pc)
Green Party: Adele Ward – 919 (1.8pc)
UKIP: Andrew Price – 462 (0.9pc)