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Last Updated: Monday December 14 2009 07:03 GMT

Joe is crowned X Factor winner

Joe McElderry

Joe McElderry has beaten Olly Murs and Stacey Solomon to win a £1m recording contract on this year's X Factor.

The 18-year-old won the public vote after making it through to the final stage of the last show against Olly.

His debut single, a new version of Miley Cyrus' The Climb is out this week and expected to be top of the Christmas charts at the weekend.

It's thought around 20 million people watched the final on Sunday night - about a third of the UK population.

And around 10 million voted on the show.

'So proud'

Joe was lost for words as he hugged mentor Cheryl Cole.

She said: "I feel over the moon, I'm absolutely delighted.

"The right person won. I'm so proud of you."

But it's not all bad news for runner-up Olly who could still have a successful music career.

Last year's second place act JLS appeared on Sunday night's show and have already had two number one singles and a top-placed album this year.