WREXHAM has elected a Conservative MP for the first time in history ending more than 80 years of Labour dominance.

Tory candidate Sarah Atherton won the seat by 2,131 votes in an area which has returned a Labour MP at every general election since 1935.

Wrexham had been a key target for Boris Johnson’s party and they emerged victorious as exit polls placed them on course for a large majority.

Supporters of Labour’s Mary Wimbury were visibly shocked as the charity worker polled in second place.

She was chosen to fight the seat for the party after Ian Lucas, who held a lead of 1,832 in 2017, announced he would be stepping down in October.

Ms Atherton, a community councillor in Gresford, claimed the Conservative pledge to “Get Brexit done” had swayed voters in an area which voted by 59 per cent to leave the EU.

She said: “I would like to thank the voters of Wrexham who have returned the first Conservative MP for Wrexham.

“They have returned the first female MP for Wrexham and as far as I’m aware the first ever female Conservative MP for Wales.

“However, you voted I will represent you. Wrexham has voted for change and a strong voice to stand up for local issues, but first of all let’s get Brexit done and unleash Wrexham’s potential.”

Media organisations from around the country gathered at the count at Glyndwr University early yesterday evening, with Wrexham viewed as a litmus test for how events would unfold elsewhere.

In the top three, Ms Atherton polled 15,199, Ms Wimbury 13,068, Carrie Harper (Plaid Cymru) 2,151.

They were followed by Tim Sly (Lib Dem) 1,447, Ian Berkley-Hurst (Brexit Party) 1,222 and Duncan Rees (Green Party) 445 as the turnout dropped from 70.5 per cent in 2017 to 67.5.

A YouGov poll published two days before the election placed the two main parties neck and neck, but it was the Conservatives who ultimately edged the vote.

There was anger in the count hall as Ms Wimbury took aim at the Tories in a speech made following her defeat, with one Conservative campaigner shouting: “Take a look at yourself.”

However, she also discussed her own party’s shortcomings.

She said: “I think there will be questions to be asked about what my party has done nationally, but that should not reflect on the local campaign team.

“We have a lot to do in terms of reflection about how we win the trust back of people in Wrexham and other constituencies looking at the national picture.

“Given that we have a Conservative government with a flatlining economy, with increasing homelessness and children relying on foodbanks, we have to look very seriously at ourselves and why we were not able to do better.”