Sunny weather boosts Suffolk Coastal count
Victoria NichollsIt was not a matter of if, but who for Suffolk Coastal voters, who knew that whatever the result, they would have a new MP.Victoria Nicholls
It was not a matter of if, but who for Suffolk Coastal voters, who knew that whatever the result, they would have a new MP.
Throughout the campaign Therese Coffey was positive about her chances of taking over from fellow Tory John Gummer, who stood down after 27 years in the seat, and who enjoyed a majority of more than 9,000 over Labour at the last election. Candidates Adam Leeder of Labour, and Liberal Democrats' Daisy Cooper, both of whom grew up in the area, were also confident in the lead-up to polling day. The other candidates were Rachel Fulcher of the Greens and UKIP's Prof Stephen Bush.
The sunny weather saw a 'steady' flow of voters to 114 polling stations across the rural constituency, which stretches along the coast from Southwold to Felixstowe. Voting marked the end of a quiet campaign, which was notable by its absence of visits by big name politicians.
Suffolk Coastal District Council reported that the day went smoothly, and compared to the quiet but steady stream of voters at the more rural stations, and in Southwold, Halesworth's polling station saw a big initial surge of activity in the early morning.
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Reports suggest that the turnout in Suffolk Coastal, with an electorate of 77,074, hit its usual above the national average level. This year a record 13,000 ballot papers for postal votes were issued.
The constituency, which includes the seaside towns of Walberswick and Aldeburgh, has seen only a few 'gentle tweaks' to boundaries this election, the most notable being the loss of Wickham Market to Central Suffolk and North Ipswich.
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The count was held at Martlesham Police Headquarters, Ipswich from 10pm.