Page last updated at 11:03 GMT, Friday, 7 May 2010 12:03 UK

Tories gain top Labour marginal seat of Crawley

Liberal Democrat Stephen Lloyd
Liberal Democrat Stephen Lloyd won the seat of Eastbourne

The Conservatives have gained one of their main target seats in the country.

Tory candidate Henry Smith won Crawley in West Sussex, which was number two on the list of constituencies the party was targeting.

Labour's Equalities Minister Michael Foster has lost Hastings and Rye to Conservative candidate Amber Rudd.

The Liberal Democrats have gained the seat of Eastbourne, with Stephen Lloyd getting 24,658 votes following a 4% swing from the Conservatives.

Turnout was up in Eastbourne - at 67.07% compared with 63.28% in 2005.

Mr Lloyd said a key reason for his victory was Nick Clegg's "tremendous leadership".

"He visited Eastbourne only a couple of days ago and he visited a few weeks ago and I am looking forward to him coming back very, very soon," he said.

'Mood for change'

Mr Foster said boundary changes had contributed to his defeat in Hastings and Rye.

"We have included the Brede Valley in the constituency - it was supposed to have added 3,000 to the Tory vote and it did just that," he said.

But Ms Rudd said the mood for change in the country had been reflected there.

"Were able to capture that mood and turn it into votes so it is a relief," she said.

Today the people of Brighton Pavilion have made history by electing Britain's first Green MP to Westminster
Caroline Lucas

Caroline Lucas will be Britain's first Green Party MP after winning the Brighton Pavilion seat.

Ms Lucas, the leader of the Green Party of England and Wales, notched up a majority of 1,252 over her nearest rival, Labour's Nancy Platts.

She said: "Today the people of Brighton Pavilion have made history by electing Britain's first Green MP to Westminster."

The Conservatives have gained the Hove Constituency from Labour following a 2.4% swing.

It was number 10 on the list of the key marginal seats they were targeting.

Brighton Kemptown has also been won by the Tories following a 4% swing from Labour.

Amber Rudd
Amber Rudd said her win reflected the mood of the country

In Bexhill and Battle Conservative candidate Greg Barker held the seat with 28,147 votes, but there was a 4% swing to Liberal Democrat Mary Varrall.

Mr Barker said the Tories had achieved "an absolutely stunning" result in the South East.

"We asked people to vote and they did in their hundreds of thousands."

The Tories have also retained Arundel & South Downs, Bognor Regis & Littlehampton, Chichester, Horsham, Sussex Mid, Wealden, Worthing East & Shoreham and Worthing West.

Lib Dem transport spokesman Norman Baker has held Lewes, with his share of the vote seeing a 0.8% swing to the Tories.

Voters in 16 constituencies visited the polls throughout the day.

People in Crawley, Hastings, Adur and Worthing have also been voting in the local government elections.

Polling stations opened at 0700 BST and closed at 2200 BST.

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