A 5,000 Labour majority was transformed into a 10,000 majority for Respect – the same total vote for me as the outgoing MP had in a general election – winning across every ward in the constituency. It was the most spectacular byelection result in British political history.
The word revolution was on many lips in this deprived and hitherto disenfranchised city well before Friday morning's result. And, like the Arab revolutions, this is a movement, above all, of the young. Bradford has a young population. By 2020 half the population will be under 25. They have grown up in the years when Tony Blair and his successors murdered the real Labour tradition, taking for granted the loyalty of working people – nowhere more so than in this city, where the precursor to the Labour party, the Independent Labour party, was founded in 1893.