General election 2010: Lib Dems gain Eastbourne from Tories

By Sabine Klensch

The Liberal Democrats have gained Eastbourne from the Conservatives.

Eastbourne is the Lib Dems’ seventh target seat, but the result goes against the grain on what appears to be a bad night for Britain’s third party.

Stephen Lloyd, the Lib Dem candidate, won 47.3% of the votes. The Tory candidate Nigel Waterson came second with 40.7%.

Overall the moderate swing of 3.8% from the Conservatives to the Lib Dem is a considerable win for Mr Lloyd.

In 2005 Conservatives had a 1.4% lead over the Liberal Democrats, which has turned into a 6.6% lead for the Lib Dems.

Mr Waterson had held the seat for four consecutive terms since 1992.

This Lib Dem gain will be heartening for Nick Clegg’s party, reviving possible coalition plans between the Liberal Democrats and the Labour party.