The Liberal Democrat Party proved the biggest casualty in the South West when the results of the European elections were announced yesterday.

In a major shake-up, Sir Graham Watson lost his seat which he has held for the last 20 years.

UKIP topped the polls, winning two seats for William, Earl of Dartmouth and newcomer Julia Reed.

The Conservatives also took two seats, which has seen Ashley Fox and Julie Girling retaining their positions as MEPs. However, the Tories lost their third representative.

Labour and, in a first for the South West, the Green Party stole the remaining two seats.

Clare Moody will now represent Labour in Europe, with Molly Scott Cato representing the Green Party.

Both Cornish candidates – Jude Robinson from Pool for the Labour Party and Robert Lee Smith from Penzance for UKIP – missed out.

Turnout in the South West vote last Thursday was 36.9 per cent.

In this election vote were cast for a party rather than an individual candidate.

Each political party put forward a list of candidates called a “regional list” and electors voted for one of these lists.

Seats have been allocated according to a party’s share of the vote across the south west region – with the party choosing the specific individuals from their list – known as a “proportional representation” system.