EU Referendum

EU referendum: Voters in South East vote to leave

Nigel Farage celebrating Image copyright PA
Image caption South East MEP and UKIP leader Nigel Farage has been celebrating victory for the leave camp

Voters in the South East have voted strongly in favour of leaving the European Union, with every council having declared its results.

Ashford, Canterbury, Dartford, Dover, Maidstone, Medway, Tonbridge and Malling, Sevenoaks, Swale, Shepway and Thanet all voted to leave the EU.

Gravesham delivered the biggest Leave majority in Kent of 30.8%, with 35,643 votes to 18,876 for Remain.

Tunbridge Wells is the only Kent town to vote for Remain.

Image caption Craig Mackinlay said it was his most interesting day in British politics

Conservative MP for South Thanet, Craig Mackinlay, said he had never been part of a more interesting day in British politics.

"There is an enthusiasm here for Britain to be a normal independent country," he said.

In Sussex Adur, Arun, Crawley, Chichester Eastbourne, Hastings, Rother, Wealden and Worthing were also in favour of leave.

But Lewes, Horsham and Mid Sussex bucked the trend with votes to remain.

Brighton and Hove delivered the biggest vote in favour of remain with a 37.2% majority of 100,648 votes to 46,027.

Image caption Woking in Surrey is among the South East towns that has voted to remain in the EU

Surrey was split, with Runnymede, Surrey Heath, Reigate and Banstead, Slough, Spelthorne and Tandridge all voting to leave the EU.

But Elmbridge, Epsom and Ewell, Guildford, Mole Valley, Waverley and Woking voted to remain.

UKIP Leader and South East MEP Nigel Farage has hailed a victory for Leave in the referendum, declaring: "Let June 23 go down in our history as our independence day."

But Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP for Brighton Pavilion, said: "This is an absolutely devastating result. I feel heartbroken."

Green Party South East MEP Keith Taylor said: "After a bitter and unedifying campaign, the most important task now is unifying our divided communities."

Image caption Counting has been taking place at the Corn Exchange in Brighton

BBC Surrey's Political reporter Jack Fiehn said Guildford MP Anne Milton revealed she had voted to remain.

She was previously one of only nine MPs who had not declared which way they would vote in the referendum.

Fellow Conservative Tracey Crouch has still not declared how she voted after saying she was keeping it private to avoid conflict in her Kent constituency of Chatham and Aylesford.

See local results here.

Follow the latest news on the BBC's live EU referendum page

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