Long-serving MP for Epping Forest Dame Eleanor Laing has been elected once again to represent the district following last week’s General Election.

Dame Eleanor, who has been the district’s MP since 1997, managed to increase her majority by obtaining 22,173 votes.

In total the Conservative candidate won 32,364 votes out of 50,537 votes cast on Thursday, December 12.

The final election count was held at Roding Valley High School in Loughton, with the results being officially announced shortly after 2am on Friday, December 13.

Epping Forest Guardian:

Candidates Dame Eleanor Laing, Vicky Ashworth te Velde and Steven Neville moments before the results were announced

Speaking moments after being named MP for the seventh consecutive time for Epping Forest, Dame Eleanor Laing said: “On this particular occasion I’m sure that everyone here will join me that we appreciate that you all did an amazing job in changing the venue of the count because of the tragic circumstances at Debden Park High School.

“Everyone involved in this election have in our thoughts and our prayers with that family who are bereaved at this time.”

Roding Valley High School stepped in last minute to host the election count following the hit and run incident outside Debden Park High School, resulting in the death of 12-year-old Harley Watson on Monday, December 2.

“It is very, very important that the democrat vote is not interrupted by any person doing anything bad or disruptive,” Dame Eleanor continued.

“What has happened across this country today is not just a victory for Boris Johnson and the Conservative Party, much more importantly it is a victory for democracy itself and our democratic process.

“It confirms that when the British people take a decision it much be respected and it must adhere to the instructions of the people that must always be carried out.

“And I sincerely hope that for everyone who has said to me during this campaign, which is hundreds of people, I really wish that you politicians would just get on with it and stop all the delay and uncertainty and squabbling amongst ourselves.

“We will have a strong Government and that would be good for this country.”

Epping Forest Guardian:

At total of 68.01 per cent of people registered to vote in Epping Forest took part in the 2019 General Election

The Epping Forest MP also announced that she will be standing for election to become Deputy Speaker for the House of Commons on Tuesday, December 17.

She tweeted: “Here we go again!! As soon as one election stops another one starts. The race is on to be Chairman of Ways and Means - ie Deputy Speaker - and having served as Deputy Speaker for the last six years, I have lots of support from my colleagues. I am running!”

Dame Eleanor had been in the running to become the next Speaker for the House of Commons after John Bercow announced he would be stepping down after ten years.

Fellow candidates hoping to become the MP for the district, Vicky Ashworth te Velde for Labour and Steven Neville for the Greens was also present as the results were announced.

Dame Eleanor congratulated her fellow candidates, saying: “I would like very much to thank the other candidates who have taken part in the contest here in Epping Forest.

“We have heard some horrible stories from around the country about things that have happened during this campaign, but they haven’t happened in Epping Forest, we have had a good natured and courteous campaign and I thank you very much indeed.”

The following results from Epping Forest were:

Eleanor Laing Conservative - 32,364

Vicky Ashworth te Velde – Labour - 10,191

Jon Whitehouse - Liberal Democrats - 5,387

Steven Neville - Green Party - 1,975

Thomas Hall - Young People's Party - 181

Jon Newham - Social Democratic Party - 170

Turnout: 68.01 per cent: Majority: 22,173 votes.