Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn visited Stoke-on-Trent to praise Gareth Snell on his victory in the Stoke-on-Trent Central by-election.
Mr Corbyn visited Hanley’s Cultural Quarter with Mr Snell, who won 7,853 votes to UKIP leader Paul Nuttall’s 5,233.
Mr Corbyn said he was there to deliver a message of hope for the future of the party and the city – a seat which Labour has held since 1950.
Standing outside the Potteries Museum, Mr Corbyn said: “Can I be the first to come here today to congratulate you on being elected the new MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central?
“And can I thank everyone who worked so hard in this campaign when many in the media wrote us off, and said UKIP are going to win that place, UKIP are going to take it – I’ll tell you what happened yesterday – people came out, worked, knocked on doors, it’s a message about the economy, it’s a message about jobs, it’s a message about this country.
“But above all it as a message that hope triumphs over fear, and it was the victory of the Labour party and the Labour candidate yesterday that has delivered this marvelous result for Stoke-on-Trent.
“And when I was here last week Gareth put forward his plan for the Potteries – we’re going to be working on that straight away for an economy that is based on investment, based on good jobs, based on growth, based on opportunities for everyone in our society.
“UKIP can’t offer that, the Tories can’t offer that, we can, we will, and we will win.”
The message was greeted with cheers from the crowd, many of who carried ‘Vote Gareth Snell’ placards.
Mr Snell said: “We have come here to thank the volunteers for the hard work that they have put in to deliver what is a very good result for the Labour party.
“This was a seat which many of you in the media had already written off for the Labour party, and what we have shown, and shown you all, that when we are united and committed and determined we will win elections.
“Perhaps there should be a general election!”
The Labour victory has emphasised that UKIP leader Paul Nuttall was unable to seize upon the people of the Potteries who voted in favour of the UK leaving the European Union, resulting in Stoke-on-Trent being dubbed the ‘Brexit capital’.
Gareth Snell vocalised his support for Remain through the by-election campaign.
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