LABOUR’S Alun Davies was re-elected for a third consecutive term in Blaenau Gwent with a significant increase to his majority.

The Tredegar-born politician swept home to victory with 10,226 votes, taking 48.8 per cent of the overall vote to increase his share from 39.4 per cent in 2016.

Plaid Cymru candidate Peredur Owen Griffiths came second with 3,588 votes, followed by Conservative Edward Dawson in third and Independent Mandy Moore in fourth.

Mr Davies said his reaction was one of ‘elation’ and said he “didn’t expect a majority of this size”.

Speaking after the result was announced on Friday, Mr Davies said there was “no greater honour in politics than to represent your home community in our national parliament”.

“The people of Blaenau Gwent have placed their trust in me on three occasions and I re-pledge myself again today to do everything I can to repay that trust, to stand up and to speak up for people across the whole borough,” he said.

“Whoever they voted for yesterday, I will represent them tomorrow.”

Mr Davies said his priorities would be to focus on the recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, adding that he would “campaign for more investment” in Blaenau Gwent.

“I will be continuing to stand up for every street in every community right across the whole of this borough,” he added.

Plaid Cymru candidate Mr Griffiths took pride in “a positive campaign” coming in second place, though the party did not perform as strongly as in 2016.

“I’m very happy with the campaign we’ve run,” he said.

“Coming second is no mean feat.”

Voter turnout was 40.5 per cent with 20,951 votes cast, down from 42.1 per cent in 2016.

Abolish The Welsh Assembly Party candidate, Richard Taylor, came in fifth place with 1,364 votes.

Before the result was announced Mr Taylor claimed he had been the victim of “a smear campaign” and that he was considering “seeking legal advice”.

Liberal Democrat Paula Yates came sixth with 333 votes, followed by Reform UK candidate Robert Beavis with 319 votes.