THE Conservatives have gained Bolton West from Labour in a shock result.

In the days running up to the election Labour were the bookies’ favourite for Bolton West at odds of 1/100.

But Tory candidate Chris Green polled 19,744 votes narrowly beating Labour candidate Julie Hilling who polled 18,943 votes.

Bolton West was hailed by Prime Minister David Cameron as one of 23 key seats the Tories had to take from Labour if they were to achieve an overall majority.

In 2010, Ms Hilling won the seat with a slender 92-vote margin making Bolton West one of the most marginal constituencies in the country.

Labour demanded a full recount – a request which was denied – however there was a “bundle recount” before the result was confirmed.

UKIP polled 7,428 and Lib Dems polled 1,947.

Victorious Mr Green paid tribute to the fantastic job Ms Hilling has done, and said, when it came down to it, that people have chosen David Cameron over Ed Miliband.

He said: "I think the leadership of the Conservatives and Labour. There was a difference there.

"When it came down to it, people made to some extent a decision on the leadership of David Cameron and Ed Miliband and what direction the two political parties will take Britain.

"Yes, although the time I really started the feel the pressure having been on the campaign trail, with speaking with people and spreading my message at the forefront of my mind, was at 10pm when all the votes were in.

"That is when I started feeling, are we going to have enough to form a government.

"I think the fundamental reason for this is confidence and security, The economy is going in the right direction and there are more people in work now and people can see the recovery.

"There is an innate conservatism in Bolton West and people believe in what we are trying to do."

Ms Hilling said it had been "a joy" to be the MP for Bolton West for the past five years but said she is worried for the future of the residents of the constituency.

She said: "My real fear for them is that if we do have a Tory government then nothing will change and they will have to carry on paying the bedroom tax and fuel bills will continue to rise, sanctions will continue to rise in the way they have - which is a disgrace and zero-hours contracts as well.

"Those things that harm ordinary working people are likely to remain because they were brought in by this government."

Reflecting on her time as MP, she said she had many things to be proud of, adding: "The campaign on dangerous dogs, the Emergency Life Skills support skills to help children learn how to save a life - I have had the most amazing staff team as well and I feel very sorry for them."