Belfast Telegraph

How the drama unfolded on night of shocks and surprises

By PA Reporter

As Theresa May's snap election gamble appeared to backfire spectacularly, here is how a night that may put Jeremy Corbyn in No 10 unfolded.

10pm: A shock exit poll puts the Tories on 314 seats, with Labour on 266, the SNP on 34, Liberal Democrats on 14, Plaid Cymru on three and Greens on one - leaving the Conservatives short of an overall majority. Sterling plunges on international markets, with the pound falling over 1.5% against the dollar and 1% against the euro within minutes.

11pm: The first result is declared, with a win for Labour in Newcastle Central where Chi Onwurah held her seat and increased her majority.

1.10am: The Conservatives fail to take target seat Wrexham from Labour.

1.13am: North Down Independent MP Lady Sylvia Hermon holds her seat, but her majority is slashed by the DUP.

1.14am: First defeat of the night is in Lanarkshire, where Labour's Ged Killen narrowly took Rutherglen and Hamilton West from the SNP's Margaret Ferrier.

1.25am: A second Tory target seat, Tooting, in south London, sees Labour's Rosena Allin-Khan hold and increase the vote share by more than 10% on Mayor Sadiq Khan's 2015 result.

1.30am: Sir Jeffrey Donaldson celebrates his biggest victory in Lagan Valley.

2am: Labour claims its first scalp from the Tories, with junior minister Jane Ellison booted out of Battersea in south London by Marsha de Cordova.

2.20am: SNP Westminster leader Angus Robertson loses his Moray seat to Conservative Douglas Ross.

2.26am: The former South Antrim Ulster Unionist MP Danny Kinahan loses out to the DUP's Paul Girvan.

2.35am: Former Foyle MP Mark Durkan looks distraught as Sinn Fein's Elisha McCallion takes the seat for Sinn Fein.

2.45am: Lib Dem Jo Swinson takes back East Dunbartonshire from SNP star John Nicolson.

2.47am: Lib Dem deputy Nick Clegg loses Sheffield Hallam, where he had been MP since 2005, to Labour's Jared O'Mara.

2.50am: Despite fears he could be in trouble, the DUP's Gavin Robinson easily holds off a challenge from the Alliance leader Naomi Long in East Belfast.

3.10am: Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn re-elected as Islington North MP in north London, increasing majority. Urges Mrs May to resign and tells crowds: "Politics has changed."

Sinn Fein's Chris Hazzard ousts the SDLP's Margaret Ritchie in South Down.

DUP deputy leader Nigel Dodds sees off a challenge from John Finucane of Sinn Fein in North Belfast.

3.20am: Emma Little-Pengelly of the DUP takes down the second of three former SDLP leaders, Dr Alasdair McDonnell.

3.25am: Mrs May is re-elected in Maidenhead with a majority 1% smaller than in 2015. Accepting victory, she indicates the Tories will seek to remain in power to ensure "stability".

4.05am: Michelle Gildernew of Sinn Fein takes back her old seat from the UUP's Tom Elliott, completing a rout of the unionist party.

4.20am: SNP veteran and former Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond loses his Gordon seat to the Tories.

5.25am: Theresa May arrives at Downing Street having spent around an hour with staff at nearby Tory HQ.

5.54am: Britain has a hung parliament, after Labour's victory in Southampton Test makes it impossible for any party to reach the 326 MPs required to achieve an absolute majority in the House of Commons.

Belfast Telegraph


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