Conservative Paul Howell was defeated in his bid to become MP for the newly-formed Newton Aycliffe and Spennymoor constituency. 

The former Tory MP for Sedgefield lost out to Labour’s Alan Strickland and Reform’s John Grant at the July 4 vote. 

Mr Howell came third and received 8,195 votes compared to 18,394 for Labour and 9,555 for Reform. 

The constituency was reshaped and renamed due to boundary changes. 

Read more: Alan Strickland elected as Labour MP in Newton Aycliffe and Spennymoor landslide

Paul Howell speaking after the election resultPaul Howell speaking after the election result (Image: Stuart Boulton)

Speaking after the result, Mr Howell thanked the area’s residents and urged the newly-elected Labour MP Alan Strickland to prioritise the community. 

He said: “I came in in 2019 on a high blue tide and I’m going out on a low blue tide. 

“Of all the people you meet the most important are the constituents. From Trimdon to Ferryhill to Chilton to Aycliffe to Sedgefield and the many villages in between. You are fantastic constituents and I have really enjoyed my time serving you.”

The political landscape across County Durham and Teesside turned from red to blue in 2019, including in nearby Bishop Auckland and Darlington, but both constituencies returned Labour victories on Friday morning. 

The Tory candidate urged Mr Strickland to fulfil Labour’s ambition to support the Hitachi rail factory in Newton Aycliffe and continue local investment programmes. 

“That factory is amazing and its people are amazing,” said Mr Howell. “We need to make sure that’s done. I would like you to deliver the railway station in Ferryhill that’s been committed to. I want you to make sure that the £20million that’s been allocated to Spennymoor is delivered. 

“I hope you do as much as I did in getting out and meeting people, or better listening to them.”


Voter turnout for the constituency was 55.29 per cent, however, Mr Howell said the figure was around 10 per cent lower than the previous General Election in 2019. 

“It’s a little bit disappointing seeing the turnout for this election,” he said. “I hope we can get more trust back into politics. Being an MP is an amazing privilege.”

Newton Aycliffe and Spennymoor RESULT:

TRANSFORM - Brian Agar 264

LIBERAL DEMOCRAT - Anne-Marie Curry 1,491

REFORM - John Grant 9,555

CONSERVATIVE - Paul Howell 8,195

GREEN - Jack Hughes 1,701

LABOUR - Alan Strickland 18,394

WORKERS PARTY - Minhajul Suhon 246