An "overwhelmed" James Arthur will try to top the Christmas charts after being crowned the X Factor winner.
The 24-year-old singer, from Saltburn, near Middlesbrough, beat Jahmene Douglas to take the title in front of a 10,000-strong audience at Manchester Arena last night.
Millions more were watching the ITV show live on television as a stunned Arthur was lost for words as the result was announced.
Asked what was going through his mind, he said: "I don't know. Thank you, thank you so much."
"Wow. I don't what to say," he added.
In a later statement, he said: "I am absolutely overwhelmed to have won The X Factor."
Arthur walks away from the talent show with a recording contract and will now release his winner's single, a rendition of Impossible by Barbadian singer Shontelle, in a bid to become the Christmas number one.
After being announced as the champion of the ninth series of the show, a dazed-looking Arthur performed the song for the second time tonight.
He was hugged by Nicole Scherzinger, who mentored both him and runner-up Douglas, the first time a judge has mentored both acts to make it to the final.
The former Pussycat Doll, who looked glamourous in a black fishtail gown, jumped up and down in excitement at his success.
Host Dermot O'Leary said Douglas had been a "terrific runner up" and told the shy singer he thought he had "blossomed" during the competition.
The 24-year-old from Swindon, Wiltshire, was magnanimous in defeat, saying: "I think it's just a blessing to share the stage with such a talent. You're so amazing James, use this platform, use it wisely."
More top news
Wednesday night's weather for the east of the region
Wednesday night's weather for the west of the region
Simon's Blog - Things That Look Like Other Things