European elections 2019: Lib Dems make London MEP gains

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Irina von Weise became one of three new Lib Dem MEPs to be elected for the London region

The Liberal Democrats were the main winners in the European elections in London, gaining three MEPs in the region.

Both the Brexit Party and Labour had two candidates elected, while the Green Party took the remaining seat.

It means the Conservative Party no longer has any MEPs in London having lost the two seats it won in the 2014 European Parliament elections.

The Lib Dems vote share rose by 20%. The Brexit Party took 18% of the vote.

Turnout was 41.3% - slightly higher than the 40.1% turnout in the previous election.

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Benyamin Habib was announced as one of two Brexit Party candidates elected as an MEP

Labour's share fell by 12.7%, while UKIP and the Conservatives fell by 14.8% and 14.6% respectively. UKIP leader Gerard Batten lost his seat as an MEP.

Irina von Wiese, Dinesh Dhamija and Luisa Porritt will now serve as MEPs for the Lib Dems, who beat Labour into second place in Jeremy Corbyn's Islington constituency.

Reacting to her victory, Ms Porritt - a councillor for Camden Council - pushed for another referendum.

She said: "Real and pressing issues have long been ignored by our two main parties, that is why we must have a people's vote."

A London Labour Party spokesman said the elections "were always going to be tough".

He added: "We're ecstatic that both Claude Moraes and Seb Dance have been elected as MEPs for London.

"Our MEPs will go to Brussels championing workers rights, fighting climate change and the other issues important to our party."

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Benyamin Habib, one of the two newly elected Brexit Party candidates in London, hailed the victory as "a historic result".

He said: "We launched seven weeks ago and proved in that short time the nation still wants Brexit and Brexit with a no deal".


By Professor Sir John Curtice

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The Liberal Democrats failed to pick up any seats in London in the 2014 European elections

Nothing illustrates more clearly the success of the Lib Dems in winning over Remain voters than the party coming a clear first in the capital, something it has never come remotely close to achieving in a previous election.

The Greens have also prospered to some degree with a three point increase in its vote to 12%.

Meanwhile the Brexit Party has inevitably done less well here with a modest 18% of the vote.

But the weakness of Change UK is underlined by its inability to get more than 5% in this most Remain part of England.

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Map of Great Britain showing the leading parties for each local authority

After Change UK failed to win a seat in London, MEP candidate and former BBC journalist Gavin Esler thanked "the 170,000 Londoners" who voted for the new party.

He said: "Now the real fight begins to save Britain from the self-harm of Brexit in a People's Vote and work to Remain."

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