After almost seven hours, the MPs for the Foyle and East Derry constituencies had been decided and, for some, the result was no big surprise.
Counting started shortly after 10.15pm for Foyle on Thursday, which saw the SDLP’s Mark Durkan re-elected. Counting for East Derry began after Foyle was over, with the DUP’s Gregory Campbell declared the winner close to 5am.
A confident Gregory Campbell polled 14,663 votes, a result he was delighted by given the increase since the 2010 election.
Speaking after his win he told the ‘Journal’ he was “exhilarated” with the 7,804 majority.
“When you get to the top of the tree you think ‘I must go down a bit’ but, we didn’t, we went up,” he said. “I was pretty confident we would win, but not by the margin we did. It was a fantastic achievement.”
For East Derry there were a total of 66,925 eligible votes. Total votes polled was 34,965. Voter turnout was 52.24 per cent, down from 55.3 per cent in 2010.
Sinn Fein’s Caoimhe Archibald polled 6,859 votes; a result she hailed as the biggest ever for Sinn Fein in East Derry.
The UUP’s William McCandless polled 5,333 votes while the SDLP ‘s Gerry Mullan polled 4,268 votes. The SDLP vote was down from the 2010 result when Thomas Conway polled 5, 399.
Alliance Yvonne Boyle 2,642; Cannabis is Safer Than Alcohol Neil Paine, 527 and Conservatives Elizabeth Anne St Clair, 422 votes.
There were 251 rejected votes.
Both counts went smoothly and, as soon as Gregory Campbell was re-elected, Templemore Complex was cleared of any signs of the 2015 Westminster General Election.