Are the Conservatives facing an upset in the Old Bexley and Sidcup by-election?

The Tories 'always win' in Old Bexley and Sidcup, but what about this time? Probably - but it maybe isn't as comfortable as hoped, ITV News Political Correspondent Carl Dinnen reports

Are the Conservatives facing an upset in the Old Bexley and Sidcup by-election?

If you don’t have time to read the rest of this then the answer is just "No". If you do have a couple of minutes the answer is "No, but…"

It’s no, but the massive 19,000 majority James Brokenshire won before his untimely death is sure to be cut. The question is by how much?

In the Blackfen Community Library Linda Leetham has been entertaining the toddlers with songs. Afterwards she says she’s always voted Conservative but: "I was a bit wobbly this year because of all this sleaze and second jobs and things like that".

Marion Ellis says she’s only voting Tory this time because the candidate worked with Mr Brokenshire, she says if the candidate here was Boris Johnson himself "it would be a very different matter".

I hear from Conservative voters who are unhappy about Brexit, about the abandonment of the centre ground, about the alleged Downing Street party last year.

Party insiders think a lot of their voters will stay at home this time and that may also be true, but quite a few are ready to hold their noses and vote Tory anyway.

And that’s why they’ll hold on here.

Boris Johnson after getting his booster vaccine. Credit: PA

The closest challengers are Labour and I hear from a couple of people who are changing their votes from other opposition parties to boost the Labour share and get the Tories out.

But it doesn’t seem enough.

It was an enormous shock when the Lib Dems overturned a Tory majority of 16,000 in Chesham and Amersham. The Bexley and Sidcup mountain is even higher for Labour to climb.

So the majority looks likely to be cut, perhaps significantly. But will the Tories lose? No.