Douglas Carswell has become the first elected MP for the UK Independence Party (Ukip) after winning the Clacton by-election.
But in a more surprising result, the party also narrowly missed first place in Heywood and Middleton.
Carswell defected to Ukip from the Conservatives in August this year, and yesterday became the Ukip's first elected MP when he won the constituency’s by-election.
He won 59.8 per cent of the votes, while Conservative MP Giles Watling received 24.6 per cent and Labour's Tim Young received 11.2 per cent. Green Party candidate Chris Southall won 2 per cent and Andy Graham of the Liberal Democrats won 1.4 per cent.
During his acceptance speech, Carswell told the crowd that there was “nothing we cannot achieve”.
"I resigned from parliament to face this election because I answer first, foremost and last to you. You are my boss. I will not let you down,” he said.
"To my new party I offer these thoughts: humility when we win, modesty when we are proved right. If we speak with passion, let it always be tempered by compassion.
"We must be a party for all Britain and all Britons: first and second generation as much as every other. Our strength must lie in our breadth.”
Nigel Farage, leader of the party, commented: "Congratulations Douglas Carswell, a brave and honourable man who has a just reward."
Although Ukip did not quite manage to win at last night's Heywood and Middleton by-election, it came close to doing so. Labour's Liz McInnes won with 41 per cent of the vote, but Ukip's John Bickley fell just 617 votes behind with 39 per cent. Conservative Iain Gartside came third with 12 of cent of the vote.
Mr Bickley said: "Labour are in big trouble. This should have been a safe seat. They have thrown everything at it and they have only just scraped home."