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The shocks and upheavals on election night

Established politicians from every party have found themselves staring down the barrel of defeat.

Barely an hour after the last Britons cast their votes in the 2017 General Election, the first constituencies began sharing their secrets.

The exit poll itself sent tremors around the political echo chambers, contrasting with the early predictions that Theresa May would find herself with a reasonable enough majority to form a government.

Here are some of the biggest shocks of the night:

Nick Clegg, Liberal Democrats

This time in 2010, Nick Clegg was preparing for life as deputy prime minister as part of the Coalition Government. Seven years, a very public apology over tuition fees and a starring role in a parody pop song later, his career as an MP is – for the time being, at least – over. His defeat in Sheffield Hallam was met with surprise from follow candidates, who looked on as the former party leader cut a subdued figure.

Angus Robertson, SNP

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(Andrew Milligan/PA)

SNP depute leader Angus Robertson had been an MP since 2001 and was defending a majority in Moray of nearly 10,000. But MSP Douglas Ross took the seat, thanking the former incumbent for his service to constituents during his career. In defeat, party grandee Mr Robertson said: “It seems to me there’s a lot of change going on. People are seeking answers to the complex questions that we all face.”

Ben Gummer, Conservative

He was the man behind the Conservative manifesto – but he was not granted the opportunity to help introduce its policies after being ditched by the electorate. The Cabinet Office minister lost out to Labour with a nearly 5% swing in Ipswich.

Jane Ellison, Conservative

Jeremy Corbyn’s party claimed the scalp of Financial Secretary to the Treasury Jane Ellison, taking her Battersea seat on a 10% swing. She had risen swiftly up the ranks since her election to Parliament in 2010. Former Chancellor George Osborne said her unexpected departure would require a “very big post-mortem”.

Alex Salmond, SNP

SNP veteran and former first minister Alex Salmond will no longer be a vocal presence in Westminster. His defeat by Colin Clark in Gordon was met with cheers from Conservative Party HQ in central London as the announcement filtered through.

Gavin Barwell, Conservative

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He was the housing minister who penned a book entitled How To Win A Marginal Seat: My Year Fighting For My Political Life. But Gavin Barwell now has grounds for a less triumphant follow-up, having lost said marginal seat – Croydon Central – to Labour’s Sarah Jones by more than 5,000 votes.

James Wharton, Conservative

Another minister, international development’s James Wharton, was also on the Labour kill list. Mr Wharton had been the incumbent for Stockton South since 2010.

Julian Brazier, Conservative

Labour took Canterbury, a seat which had been held by Conservatives since 1918. Rosie Duffield was the history-maker, defeating Julian Brazier by around 200 votes.

Simon Kirby, Conservative

Economic Secretary to the Treasury Simon Kirby lost his Brighton Kemptown seat to Labour on an 11% swing. The 52-year-old was elected to Parliament in 2010 and was appointed to the Treasury team when Mrs May became Prime Minister in 2016.

Nicola Blackwood, Conservative

Public health minister Nicola Blackwood lost Oxford West & Abingdon to the Liberal Democrats by just 816 votes. The 37-year-old won the seat from the Lib Dems in 2010 and had chaired the Commons Science and Technology Committee before being appointed to the Department of Health by Mrs May in July last year.

Edward Timpson, Conservative

The children and families minister was beaten by Labour by just 48 votes in the Crewe & Nantwich seat which he seized in a by-election in 2008. Son of the chief executive of the family shoe-repair empire, Mr Timpson was given junior ministerial rank by Mr Cameron in 2012 and promoted to minister of state following the 2015 general election.

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