BARROW wakes up to a blue Christmas today after it fell from Labour’s grasp for the first time in more than 27 years.

Conservative challenger Simon Fell, 39, made it third time lucky on Friday 13th after contesting the seat in the 2017 and 2015 general elections.

He polled 23,875 votes for a majority of 5,789. Labour rookie Chris Altree, aged 32, received 18,087 votes.

Delighted Mr Fell hugged supporters and praised his team as the result was announced at 3.30am to a packed chamber.

He said: "This is one of the proudest moments of my life. It's an outstanding result. We have all fought a good campaign and all want the best for this place.

"Now we have the election out the way it's about working together and doing the best for this community.

"A lot of people have put their faith in me and now I have to earn their trust."

Mr Altree, 32, had conceded defeat before the poll was announced, saying he felt deflated by Labour's performance nationally.

A representative for Mr Altree said: "Chris Altree was an excellent Labour candidate. We had difficulties and the Conservatives only had one card to play here: that Labour was soft on defence and would be bad for the shipyard.

"It isn't true but it did cut through on the doorstep."

It brings to an end more than 10,000 days of Labour-rule in Barrow and Furness, which was marked by the bitter departure of former MP John Woodcock, an outspoken critic of Labour’s Jeremy Corbyn.


Labour (Chris Altree) 18,087

Lib Dem (Loraine Birchall) 2,025

Conservative (Simon Fell) 23,876

Green (Chris Loynes) 703

Brexit Party (Ged McGrath) 1,355