Election winner Tessa Munt: 'The work starts here'

This is The West Country: Tessa Munt Tessa Munt

VICTORIOUS MP Tessa Munt refused to get carried away by her stunning election win in Burnham and Highbridge, declaring - 'the work starts here'.

A night of high drama in Draycott saw the Lib Dem snatch victory from the Conservatives by 800 votes, ousting longstanding MP David Heathcoat-Amory from power.

Straight after her historic victory, Tessa told the Weekly News: “I am absolutely delighted.

“I think seven years of hard work - and meeting around 49,000 people - has got me here today.

“We have put a lot of effort into the campaign and have been rewarded for it.”

The mum-of-two announced her intention to get straight down to business - revealing she was kicking-off her constituency duties by meeting the Highbridge Residents Association just hours after the election result.

She said: “The voters have put their trust in me.

“Everyone in the constituency is entitled to ask what they expect from me, but what you can and should demand from me is that I exceed expectations.”

The newly elected MP admitted that the MP's expenses scandal - which heavily tainted her rival, outgoing MP David Heathcoat-Amory -had played a part in her rise.

David Heathcoat-Amory, who had been Burnham and Highbridge's MP for 27 years, wished Mrs Munt the best in her new role, but fired a parting shot at his successor on the way out.

He said: “I faced a negative campaign but that's the way politics is. I decided to base my campaign on policies.”

Mr Heathcoat-Amory was in a sombre and reflective mood - admitting that his decision to claim for manure, among other gardening fixtures, on his expenses had damaged him.

He also rued the decision of the UKIP candidate to defy party orders and stand against him.

“But I'm not a bad loser - I fought as well as I could”, he added.

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