This year’s journey has been dominated by my passion for politics and the commitment to help deliver a strong Conservative majority government on May 7th which will guarantee the continued economic recovery and a better future for us all.
As the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Scunthorpe, I fought a positive campaign on the need for change and I promised local people that if they gave me their vote I would put Scunthorpe on the map. I was truly humbled that many people across the constituency voted Conservative for the very first time or for the first time in a long, long time.
The result surprised the bookies, who had put me in third place behind UKIP. On the night I secured a strong second place with 12,259 votes (an increase of 0.5% on 2010) with UKIP in third place with 6,329 votes. Although the Lib Dem vote decreased by 16.2%, the incumbent Labour candidate Nic Dakin could only secure a 2.5% increase in vote share, winning 41.7% of the total vote in a turnout of only 57.7%, a disappointing result for him given that in 2010 the Labour vote had dropped 12.5% because the criminal conviction of former MP Elliot Morley.
There was no doubt in my mind that the Scunthorpe County Constituency could have been considered a marginal seat in 2015. Local people have proved this to be true on May 7th, and in 2020 we need to deliver real change in an area which has been taken for granted by a Labour Party which has preached a message of fear, envy and negativity.
Thank you to everyone for your good wishes for the future. As I have said many times over the last three months, I did not have a Plan B, because you can’t dedicate yourself wholeheartedly to a cause if you are making alternative plans at the same time. So now I need to take stock, have a bit of a break and focus on the future.
One of my favourite motivational lines is:
“Find a purpose in life so big it will challenge every capacity to be at your best” D.O.McKay
The Scunthorpe campaign was that and more. Thank you for giving me the opportunity. I would have loved to be your strong voice at Westminster, so coming second is my only regret. I hope you will remember me fondly.