KENSINGTON was the only seat to not formally announce an election result yesterday morning because Tories refused to accept that Labour was winning one of Britain’s wealthiest constituencies.
What has long been considered an ultra-safe Tory seat was on the verge of being painted red for the first time in its history after a slim majority was shown in provisional numbers from 2am.
Labour candidate Emma Dent Coad received 50 more votes than the Conservatives’ Victoria Borwick — who was not present at the count.
The result triggered recounts and Ms Dent Coad’s majority was eventually reduced to a figure between 20 and 30.
Another recount — believed to be the fourth count altogether — was scheduled to recommence at 6pm yesterday evening.
Pictures posted on Twitter by ITN journalist Warren Nettleford, who was one of the only journalists at Kensington Town Hall, showed tellers — some wrapped in sheets and blankets — sleeping with heads on tables and stretching out on chairs because of sheer exhaustion.
They were then sent home to rest before starting the next count. In a statement, returning officer Tony Redpath said: “The provisional result of the election was known at approximately 2am. That result was very close and a recount was therefore requested. The result on that recount also remained very close.
“A request for a third count was therefore made. At this stage staff had been up all night and were becoming visibly tired.
“In order to have confidence in its accuracy, the recount has been suspended to allow staff to rest and recuperate.”