EU referendum: Dorset votes to leave

  • Published
Media caption,

Chair of Dorset Out David Darling celebrated a 16% majority win for the Brexit campaign in Poole

Voters in Dorset have overwhelmingly backed leaving the European Union.

All districts in the county favoured the Leave campaign.

The highest majority was 22% in Weymouth and Portland where there was a 75% turn out, with 61% of voters opting to leave.

In West Dorset, North Dorset, East Dorset, Christchurch, Bournemouth, Poole and Purbeck the campaign won by a majority of 2%, 12%, 15%, 17%, 9%, 16% and 18% respectively.

Media caption,

Cameron 'did an enormous amount of good' - West Dorset MP Oliver Letwin

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North Dorset MP Simon Hoare was among the Remain campaigners at the Poole count

Analysis by BBC Dorset political reporter Tristan Pascoe

As elections go this was a momentous occasion with a clear cut and decisive victory.

All eight voting districts in Dorset - traditional Tory heartland - overwhelmingly rejecting the Remain arguments.

In Christchurch and East Dorset - the last two voting areas to be declared - Vote Leave won by about two votes to one.

As the results came through, reflecting the national picture, the faces on the Remain campaigners present in Poole grew progressively longer and more crestfallen.

The political reality is that we've entered a new era for politics in Dorset and Great Britain - and one which chimes with not just the electorate but with the five out of eight MPs in the county who wanted us to leave.

Image caption,
In Christchurch, where the was a 79% turn out, the Leave campaign won by a majority of 17%

David Darling, chair of Dorset Out, who was at the Poole count, said of Remain: "These guys need to remember we're part of one country - we need to work together."

Conservative MEP for the South West, Julie Girling, said she was "incredibly sad" following the leave result, adding she did not care about leaving her job in Brussels.

Conservative MP for North Dorset Simon Hoare said he wasn't surprised by the result.

"We could have doubled, even trebled our efforts, worked 27 hours-a-day and still have arrived at the same result," he said.

He added: "I don't think it was project fear as opponents have described it - it was project reality".

Image caption,
The Leave campaign had a 16% majority win in Poole following a 75% turn out

Molly Scott-Cato became the Green Party's first ever MEP in Dorset two years ago.

She said she was "devastated" by the outcome of the referendum and warned of dire economic consequences.

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