Election 2015 England

Election 2015: Sunderland wins race to declare

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Media captionLabour won the first seat of the campaign to be declared

For the sixth time running, Houghton and Sunderland South became the first general election constituency to declare, announcing at 22:48 BST.

Labour held the seat, with an increased majority for Bridget Phillipson.

UKIP leapfrogged the Conservatives to reach second place, increasing their vote more than seven-fold from 2010.

The Lib Dems came last after the Greens, with their share of the vote dropping to 791 from 7,191 in 2010, and losing their deposit.

Being the first to declare added an "extra bit of pressure" but it was good for Sunderland to get national recognition, Ms Phillipson said.

UKIP candidate Richard Elvin said the party in the area had "come a long way in five years" and described it as a "terrific achievement".

Lib Dems 'very disappointed'

There was a similar pattern in Sunderland Central, which declared next, with Julie Elliott retaining it for Labour.

The Conservatives were second and UKIP significantly increased its vote to come third.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption (Left to right) Sharon Hodgson, Bridget Phillipson and Julie Elliot

Labour also held Washington and Sunderland West, with UKIP beating the Conservatives.

Once again, the Liberal Democrats saw a large drop in their share of the vote - 993 compared with 6,382 in 2010.

All three Sunderland constituencies declared before midnight and the three Labour MPs - all women - increased their majority.

Elsewhere across Northumberland, Tyneside, Wearside and County Durham, there were few changes.

The North East is a Labour heartland and in many constituencies it increased its share of the vote, mostly at the expense of the Liberal Democrats.

Labour held the three Newcastle seats with the Liberal Democrats pushed into fourth place behind the Conservatives and UKIP.

Newcastle East Liberal Democrat candidate Wendy Taylor said: "I'm very, very disappointed. I really didn't think it was going to be as bad as this."

Image caption New Berwick MP, Conservative Anne-Marie Trevelyan, said she was "humbled by result"

Labour hold on to Wansbeck and Blyth Valley, Conservatives kept their hold on Hexham, and in Berwick-upon-Tweed the Conservatives won by 4,914 votes, with the Liberal Democrats dropping to second place and Labour third.

There were also local elections, with Labour retaining its seats on Sunderland and Newcastle councils.

Results for Gateshead, North Tyneside, and South Tyneside councils are on our election live service.