A LONG-standing Tory MP has retained his seat by a fairly narrow margin.

Conservative veteran Sir Geoffrey Clifton-Brown won the new North Cotswolds constituency - his ninth electoral victory since entering politics 31 years ago in 1992.

The 71-year-old won the constituency with 17,426 votes, while Liberal Democrat Paul Hodgkinson came second with 14,069 votes. 

Sir Geoffrey won by 3,357 votes - a smaller margin in contrast to 2019's snap election where he beat the Liberal Dems by 20,214 votes. 

Meanwhile, other candidates standing Anna Mainwaring (Labour) received 8,593 votes, Jason Preece (Reform) 6,502, Chloe Turner (Green) 3,191 and Jean Blackbeard (Independent) 448.

Results were announced at Cirencester Leisure Centre at around 6am.

The newly-created seat includes places like Bibury, Sapperton, Northleach, Moreton-in-Marsh, Stow-on-the-Wold, Bourton-on-the-Water, Chipping Campden, Birdlip, Brockworth, Churchdown and Shurdington.

It also includes parts of the Stroud area such as Standish, Slad, Edge, Painswick, Pitchcombe, Minchinhampton and Oakridge.

Turnout in the North Cotswolds constituency on Thursday was 68.87 per cent - with 50,415 people voting out of an electorate of 73,203.

This was a lower turnout in contrast to 2019's snap election for the former and now abolished Cotswolds seat where 74.7 per cent of people voted.

"This is a huge privilege"

Speaking in his victory speech, Sir Geoffrey said it was a “sad night” for the Conservatives adding the party needed to “regroup” after losing 250 seats. 

“Ladies and gentlemen, this is a huge privilege, my ninth electoral victory,” he said.

“I’d like to thank very much firstly my immediate family, particularly my wife, who has had to put up with me… various sorts of states of emotions during this campaign and my daughters here.

“All my huge team, I can’t tell you how many miles and hour all my team members have put in. It has been a fantastic team effort."

“This is an enormous big complex constituency, but as a member of Parliament I will attempt to try and help the people in it, to overcome their various problems.”

Sir Geoffrey first entered politics in 1992 as an MP representing the former Cirencester & Tewkesbury until 1997.

Since then, he has represented the Cotswolds seat for 27 years.

He added: “All the candidates, I thank them for putting themselves forward for election.

“It has been a big journey for all of us because it is such a big constituency.


“The only thing I would just say to my candidates, is I have seen fly posters illegally posted saying I am the worst member of Parliament and that I shouldn't be here.

“I’d say to all of my candidates gently, that is demeaning politics, it's not true and doesn’t do any of us any good.

“So when you think about fighting a campaign in the future please try and clear it up.

“I haven’t criticised you personally, I have made it my political mission over 32 years to try and not criticise people personally and I’d ask you to do the same.

The new North Cotswolds constituency includes places like Birdlip, Painswick, Minchinhampton and Bourton-on-the-Water (Image: Newsquest)

"Sad night" for the Conservatives

“This has been a sad night for the Conservatives, we will have to regroup.

“We need to work with other opposition parties to form a strong opposition as this government is going to have a huge majority.

“So I pledge to all of you and to all my constituents, I will work as hard as I can on your behalf.

“I will certainly as I always have been a strong and if necessary a critical voice in Parliament to do the best I possibly can for all of my constituents.

“It's a huge honour and a privilege on this ninth election victory to represent the North Cotswolds.”

“I was delighted to come a clear second"

In second place, Mr Hodgkinson, said: “First of all congratulations Sir Geoffrey on your victory, obviously it was a much tighter result this time.

“I was delighted to come a clear second because I want to say that all these MRP people were always saying something completely different.

“I always believed we were challengers.

“So many people backed me and had the faith in me.

“I’m very sorry I can’t join my colleagues in the South Cotswolds, Tewkesbury and Cheltenham who have had amazing Lib Dem results.

“Finally I’d like to thank my team, who have been there all night waiting for the results to come.

“All those people who helped me and delivered leaflets and believed in me, thank you very much.”

The election count last night taking place at Cirencester Leisure Centre - photo by Cotswold District Council (Image: Cotswold District Council)