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In photos: UK's race to 10 Downing Street

By The Rediff News Bureau
Last updated on: June 09, 2017 13:02 IST
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It was a catastrophic gamble for British Prime Minister Theresa May and the ruling Conservative Party. Snapshots from UK's post-Brexit snap general elections.

Polling Station Britain election

Photograph: Paul Childs/Reuters

A voter leaves a polling station in Garthorpe, Britain after voting in the general election on June 8, 2017.

The election was not due until May 2020. But when Theresa May of the Conservative Party took over as Prime Minister in 2016 -- after UK voted for Brexit, and David Cameron resigned -- she called for a snap election that received the necessary two-thirds majority in the House of Commons.

Polling Station Britain

Photograph: Hannah McKay/Reuters

Outside a polling station in London. The Conservatives, who have governed since 2015, were defending a majority of 12 against the Labour Party, the official opposition.

Pawing station

Photograph: Anthony Devlin/Getty Images

The pooches do their bit. Dougie, the Cocker Spaniel, patiently waits at a 'Pawing Station' outside a polling station in Greater Manchester.


Photograph: Paul Child/Reuters

Election staff start counting the ballots, thus beginning the final stages of a closely fought election. Though the elections began with the odds in favour of May, the numbers quickly turned.

Counting Britain election

Photograph: Ed Sykes/Reuters

A ballot box is rushed into a counting centre as the lead between the Tories and Labour reduces.

Loony party

Photograph: Darren Staples/Reuters

Members of The Official Monster Raving Loony Party -- no kidding! -- wait as votes are counted into the early hours of June 9.

Fish Finger

Photograph: Andrew Yates/Reuters

And if the Loony Party wasn't loony enough, there was Mr Fish Finger, who stood against Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron.

According to Metro, 'Mr Fish Finger decided to stand after an informal Twitter poll determined that users would rather be led by a fish finger than Mr Farron.' He ran a crowdfunded campaign and made it to the ballot.

Scottish Labour supporters

Photograph: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images

Scottish Labour supporters celebrate as they win back a seat in Glasgow, Scotland. The Scottish Nationalist Party is the third largest party in this election after the Tories and Labour, but it is unlikely to come out unscathed.

Majority of Scotland had voted against Brexit. And in March, the Scottish parliament voted in favour of holding a second referendum on independence.

Ireland Britain elections

Photograph: Charles McQuillan/Getty Images

The wife of the Democratic Unionist Part candidate Gavin Robinson is overcome with emotion after he regained his seat in Belfast, Northern Ireland. DUP is the fifth largest party in the UK House of Commons.

BBC Britain elections

Photograph: Eddie Keogh/Reuters

The BBC Television centre is illuminated with the results of a general election that took place under the shadow of three deadly terror attacks that have rocked Britain since March.

In March, five people were killed and 40 others injured when a terrorist mowed down pedestrians on Westminster bridge and stabbed a police officer outside the parliament complex before being shot dead by Scotland Yard officers.

Last month, a suicide bomber -- one the Islamic State claimed as its own -- set off a bomb at a concert of pop star Ariana Grande in Manchester city, killing at least 22 people and injuring 59 others, in the deadliest terror attack in Britain since the 2005 London bombings.

And this month, just days before the elections, three knife-wielding attackers in fake suicide vests plowed a van into pedestrians on the iconic London Bridge before stabbing revellers in a nearby market, killing seven people. 

trader British eelection

Photograph: Clodagh Kilcoyne/Reuters

A capital trader reacts to the election results.

Labour Party Corbyn

Photograph: Darren Staples/Reuters

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn, right, and Labour candidate Emily Thornberry at a counting centre on June 9. With the Conservatives failing to reach the 326 seats they need to form a majority government, it is possible that Corbyn might become the next prime minister of UK.

Theresa May

Photograph: Chris J Ratcliffe/Getty Images

Theresa May, Britain's second woman PM, leaves the Conservative Party headquarters with her husband Philip after it was clear that her election gamble had failed and the Conservatives would not win absolute majority. With the results putting British politics and the future of Brexit into disarray, there were immediate calls for May to quit.

10 Downing Street

Photograph: Hannah McKay/Reuters

The Door of 10 Downing Street on June 9, the morning after Britain's election, as the world waited to hear if May would quit. 

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