Election 2015: Lib Dems rocked by fears the Conservatives will take Eastbourne as count continues

General Election Count Eastbourne SUS-150805-004227001
General Election Count Eastbourne SUS-150805-004227001

As the Parliamentary Count continues at Eastbourne’s Winter Garden this morning (Friday, May 8), rumours are rife that the Conservatives may steal the seat from the Liberal Democrats.

Exit polls and the first results nationwide show the Lib Dems suffering shocking defeats across the country and while Eastbourne’s Liberal Democrat incumbent Stephen Lloyd and Norman Baker in Lewes seemed likely to keep their seats in parliament, senior politicians here at the count believe all that could change in the next few hours and Conservative Caroline Ansell could sweep the board.

General Election Count Eastbourne SUS-150805-003947001

General Election Count Eastbourne SUS-150805-003947001

Other candidates are Jake Lambert (Labour), Paul Howard (Independent), Nigel Jones (UKIP) and Andrew Durling (Green).

The ballot papers for the council and parliamentary count are currently being verified and the count itself is due to begin shortly.

Returning officers will soon reveal the electoral turnout, which is expected to be higher than in previous elections.

The two candidates at the centre of the controversy are not at the count yet. Stephen Lloyd is with campaigners at party headquarters and Caroline Ansell is expected within the next hour.

The result is not due until 4am but you can keep up-to-date with all the election news across Sussex by visiting our live blog.