Beast of Bolsover loses his seat: Labour's Dennis Skinner is defeated

Beast of Bolsover loses his seat: Labour's Dennis Skinner is defeated

December 13, 2019

Beast of Bolsover loses his seat: Labour’s Dennis Skinner is defeated by the Tories on a 11.5% swing

  • The ex-miner was among a raft of Jeremy Corbyn’s MPs ushered out by Tories
  • Tory Mark Fletcher won 21,791 votes compared to his Labour rival’s 16,492 
  • The Derbyshire constituency has been Labour since its inception in the 1950s 

Notorious Labour politician Dennis Skinner has lost the seat he has represented since 1970 in a dramatic 11.5 per cent swing to the Tories.

Known as the Beast of Bolsover for his fiery outbursts from the backbenches, the ex-miner was among a raft of Jeremy Corbyn’s MPs ushered out as Boris Johnson mopped up the party’s Leave-voting northern heartlands.

The Derbyshire constituency has been Labour since its inception in the 1950s, but the Conservatives last night trounced Mr Skinner to return a 5,299 majority.

Tory Mark Fletcher won 21,791 votes compared to his Labour rival’s 16,492.

Known as the Beast of Bolsover for his fiery outbursts from the backbenches, the ex-miner was among a raft of Jeremy Corbyn’s MPs ushered out as Boris Johnson mopped up the party’s Leave-voting northern heartlands (file photo)

It is not thought Mr Skinner turned up to last night’s count, with Labour activists apparently walking out before the result was announced. 

Before his defeat, Mr Skinner was poised to takeover from former Chancellor Ken Clarke as Father of the House – the title bestowed upon the Commons’ longest-serving MP.  

Mr Skinner and Mr Clarke were both elected on June 18 1970, but the Tory grandee was sworn in first as his name comes first alphabetically. 

The veteran left-winger’s 5,000 majority was under threat heading into Thursday’s crunch election, with most polling predicting Bolsover (70 per cent Leave) to fall to the Tories.

Mr Skinner established himself in Parliament through his withering put-downs and rage-filled rants – primarily directed at Conservative politicians.

Not without controversy, he was once kicked out of the chamber after refusing to apologise for branding David Cameron ‘dodgy Dave’.

Yet his most famous interventions came during the annual state opening of Parliament, where he would regularly enliven the otherwise formal event by supplying a quip to Blackrod.  

His broadsides became such a staple part of the ceremony that they were even scheduled into the proceedings.  

However the Beast of Bolsover has roared for the last time from the opposition benches, which will be more distinctly more thin following last night’s resounding win for the Prime Minister.

Mr Johnson took a sledgehammer to Labour’s so-called Red Wall in the North, with a haul of traditional working-class strongholds being won by the Tories. 

Mr Skinner’s longtime friend and hard-left ally Mr Corbyn said in the wake of his crushing defeat he would not lead the party into any more elections. 

Source: Read Full Article