General Election 2024: Race for Ashfield hots up as Labour's Rhea Keehn poised to topple Lee Anderson

Lee Anderson standing at the front of the open-top bus
-Credit: (Image: PA)

Labour's Rhea Keehn is narrowly ahead of Reform's Lee Anderson in the race for the hotly-contested seat in Ashfield. During the election trail, the controversial and outspoken Mr Lee Anderson and the independent Jason Zadrozny - of the Ashfield Independents which dominate local politics and Ashfield District Council - described the seat as a two-horse race.

But this doesn't quite match up with the Ipsos UK exit poll which gives a 46 percent chance of a 'possible Labour gain' in favour of Ms Keehn. Though it is still evenly poised with a 44 percent chance of a 'possible other gain', with Reform UK supporters upbeat and confident Mr Anderson is in the driving seat.

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The verification of votes has been completed in Ashfield, around two hours earlier than expected. The turnout has been confirmed as 58%, the lowest turnout figure since the 2005 general election.

Given that verification has been completed well earlier than expected, officials are now hopeful a final result could be declared sooner than the originally predicted 4.30am, though this depends on whether any recounts take place.

Ashfield - made up of former mining towns - was historically part of the so-called 'Red Wall'. Supporters were staunch red - due to the Conservative Government under Margaret Thatcher closing the pits from the 1980s.

Yet a staggering 70 percent of voters voted to leave the EU and the Red Wall turned blue in 2019, as voters sided with Boris Johnson's "get Brexit done" and Lee Anderson was elected before he was suspended by the Tories due to comments directed at London mayor Sadiq Khan.

Nationally, a landslide Labour victory is being predicted as they are forecast to win 410 seats to the Tories' 131 - which would be the lowest number of MP's the Conservatives have held since records began.

Follow our live, rolling general election coverage here.

Ashfield candidates

Reform UK

Lee Anderson


Alexander Coates

Liberal Democrats

Daniel Holmes


Rhea Keehn


Debbie Soloman


Jason Zadrozny