'Humbled and honoured' - New Esher and Walton MPs outlines her priorities

New Esher and Walton MP Monica Harding outside the Houses of Parliament | Picture: LDR ServiceNew Esher and Walton MP Monica Harding outside the Houses of Parliament | Picture: LDR Service
New Esher and Walton MP Monica Harding outside the Houses of Parliament | Picture: LDR Service
New MP for Esher and Walton says its the “privilege” of her life to represent the seat – and becoming the first female MP the area has ever sent to parliament.

At 10pm on July 4, the exit polls from the General Election were published and immediately it became clear that, for the first time in 14 years, there would be a change of Government.

The only questions that remained were the size of Labour’s majority – and how many Surrey seats the Conservatives would hold.

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By 7am we got our answer with the Liberal Democrats taking six Surrey constituencies from the Tories, with the party going on nationally to win its greatest share in over 100 years – including the first woman ever to represent the residents of Esher and Walton.

The new member of parliament Monica Harding discusses her top priorities after sweeping the constituency with 28,315 votes, well ahead of Conservative candidate John Cope on 16,312.

Speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, she said it was the “privilege” of her life to represent the people of Esher and Walton.”

She said: ‘I am tremendously humbled and honoured that the people of Esher and Walton have put their trust in me. This is my home.

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“I’m a local mum of four. I’ve been a trustee at the local hospice, a governor for eight years at a local school.

“This is my community and I’m so proud to represent it. I know all about the joys of living in this fantastic area, but also the challenges.

“My team and I have knocked on 20,000 doors over the last six weeks and we have a good idea of the priorities of the people of Esher and Walton.

“They want us to fix the NHS and adult social care, to rebuild the economy, for public services to work for them and their families, for our rivers to be clean and for schools to be supported. They just want things to work again.”

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She told the LDRS that her focus will be on “delivering for the people who have been “neglected for too long”.

She added: “I’ve unearthed so many issues where people feel let down and feel like they don’t have anyone fighting their corner.

“I’m going to do just that. I will stand up for my constituents and work tirelessly on their behalf.

In her acceptance speech, she said it was the “beginning of a fresh start” and that she was “honoured and humbled” that residents their faith her.

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She said: “To the families who are struggling through this cost of living crisis.

“The small business owners at the heart of our community who need more support and the countless people I have met who have waited weeks to get healthcare.

“To the swimmers and the rowers and the nature lovers who see the destruction of our rivers.

“To all the young people who are struggling to find mental health support as they make their way into the future.

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to the teachers and healthcare workers, police and frontline services who are stretched to the limit and yet still care for us and keep us safe.

“People of all walks of life who have been let down and taken for granted again and again.”

Adding: “I hear you and I will fight for you all year round.”

2024 General Election Esher and Walton results in full

Lib Dem gain from Conservative

  • Monica Harding(Lib Dem) 28,315
  • John Cope(Conservative) 16,312
  • Alastair Gray(Reform) 4,777
  • Yoel Gordon(Labour) 2,846
  • Maciej Pawlik(Green) 1,396
  • Richard Bateson(Soc Dem) 234

Lib Dem majority: 12,003

Turnout: 72.8 per cent