Responding to the result of the Oldham West and Royton by-election

I am delighted that Labour has not only won the Oldham West and Royton by-election – but increased our share of the vote since the general election in May.

Jim McMahon will make an excellent MP and a worthy successor to Michael Meacher, and I am looking forward to welcoming him to Labour’s team at Westminster.

Jim ran a great campaign, focusing on bringing jobs to Oldham and giving every child the best opportunities.

By-elections can be difficult for the party holding the seat, and turnouts are often low. But to increase our share of the vote since the General Election is a vote of confidence in our party.

It’s a clear demonstration that Labour is the party working people trust.

Our determination to oppose Tory austerity policies, and our successes in pushing them back on tax credit and police cuts show that Labour is getting results for working people.

With the Tories going nowhere in Oldham, UKIP has benefited from a protest vote. But this first electoral test in the new parliament has made clear Labour is the real alternative for Britain.