Page last updated at 11:09 GMT, Friday, 7 May 2010 12:09 UK
Shropshire's MPs hold onto their seats
BBC Shropshire's Liz Roberts and Daniel Kawczyski
BBC Shropshire's Liz Roberts talks to Shrewsbury's Daniel Kawczynski

Shropshire's five MPs held onto their seats in the 2010 general election.

The Wrekin's Mark Pritchard and Owen Paterson in North Shropshire increased their Conservative majorities, as did Daniel Kawczynski in Shrewsbury.

Philip Dunne was successful for the Tories in Ludlow where he too polled more votes than in 2005.

David Wright, the only Labour MP in the county had a fight on his hands, but managed to fend off the Conservative challenge in Telford.

BBC Shropshire's reporters were at each of the counts. The first declaration was in Telford at 1.30am.

Telford MP David Wright
David Wright fought off the Tory challenge in Telford

Andy Giddings was there: "Telford was always going to be a close contest, and when David Wright arrived at the count he looked worried. His supporters did not know which was the vote was going to go.

"Some told me he had won, others appeared resigned to defeat. Both David Wright (Labour) and Tom Biggins (Conservative) were anxiously pacing the sports hall at TCAT (Telford College of Arts and Technology) as the counting took place.

"At one point there were rumours of a recount because the voting was so close, But then, at about a quarter past one we saw a smile on David Wright's face and his supporters surrounded him, hugging him and patting him on the back. He had held onto his seat."

Wrekin MP Mark Pritchard
Conservative Mark Pritchard increased his majority in the Wrekin

The next declaration was The Wrekin 10 minutes later. Sean Fogarty was at the count: "An ecstatic Mark Pritchard romped home in the Wrekin. The defending Conservative exceeded all expectations, increasing his majority from just under 1,000 to well over 9,000.

"Labour needed a swing of less than 1.5% to take the seat back, but were soundly thrashed.

"The last ballot box, from Mark Pritchard's own back yard of Little Wenlock came in at 10.55pm, and it quickly became apparent that the other parties had failed to make any inroads into the constituency."

Daniel Kawczynski
Daniel Kawczynski held Shrewsbury for the Conservatives

At 3.50am the results were declared in Shrewsbury, watched by Liz Roberts: "With a Tory majority of only 1,800 in the last election, on the face of it, the fight for the Shrewsbury and Atcham seat seemed an open contest.

"There was one key difference from 2005 though. As ballot boxes arrived it became clear that this time it would be the Liberal Democrats, not Labour, who would be the main competition for the Conservatives.

"To begin with the Lib Dem candidate Charles West looked hopeful, stealing votes from Labour in the town centre wards, but as the evening went on the piles of paper revealed a decisive winner was in sight.

"Daniel Kawczynski gained more than 40% of the vote, increasing his majority by almost 8,000. For him and the other candidates, it is back to business as usual."

Philip and Domenica Dunne
Philip Dunne and his wife Domenica celebrate after his win in Ludlow

At the same time as the results were being announced in Shrewsbury, Tim Cook was hearing the declaration in Ludlow: "Ludlow Leisure Centre was unruffled either by political controversy or the gremlins which made it such a long night in 2005.

"It had become clear that the intervention of the former Ludlow Tory MP Christopher Gill as a UKIP (UK Independence Party) candidate had not after all undermined the Conservative vote.

"So the issue was simply whether Heather Kidd of the Lib Dems could run the sitting MP Philip Dunne close.

"On a quiet, dignified and efficiently managed night, the answer turned out to be 'no'. Dunne increased his majority nearly fivefold to just under 10,000."

North Shropshire MP, Owen Paterson
Owen Paterson increased his Tory majority in North Shropshire

The final result to be declared was in North Shropshire where James Bond waited patiently until 4.35am: "The North Shropshire count took the longest of our five seats. Surprising really, as it was always going to be a straight win for Owen Paterson.

"The Tory man held his seat with a whopping 16,000 majority - 5,000 up on last time out.

"All along there had been a feverish buzz at the Whitchurch Civic Centre, but predicted declaration times came and went before finally, at 4.35am, Mr Paterson was confirmed for his third spell as the area's MP with the Lib Dems overtaking Labour for second spot.

"A posse of local Tory heavyweights prowled about scrutinising the counters as the Paterson tally grew and grew.

"Among those totting up the votes was Nikole Ashley, a first time voter who came straight from her last ever university exam to play her part in the democratic process. By 4.35am perhaps she might have rued giving up her student celebrations."

Parties retain Shropshire seats
07 May 10 |  England


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