Neil Hamilton
Hamilton made his political comeback after losing his Westminster seat at the 1997 general election Getty

Former Conservative MP turned reality TV star Neil Hamilton has made an unlikely political comeback by being elected to the Welsh Assembly as a Ukip candidate. Mark Reckless, another former Tory MP who dramatically defected to the Eurosceptic party in 2014, also saw electoral success as the party's lead candidate in the South Wales East region.

Hamilton, a former Tory minister, experienced a spectacular fall from grace 20 years ago over the 'cash for questions' scandal. He now joins Ukip's new cohort at Cardiff that is expected to have seven representatives at the Welsh assembly once all the results are in.

"Ukip has made a great breakthrough today, and I don't think the politics of the assembly will ever be the same again. This has been quite a surprising turn of events for me," Hamilton said in his victory speech.

"I hadn't anticipated at the age of 67 that I would once again be elected to public office. Particularly after I had been liberated from it so spectacularly in 1997 by the electorate. But I came back into politics after that event for one thing and one thing only, to free our country from the bonds of the European Union."

Welsh Labour has so far lost one seat in the election, but Carwyn Jones' party is still expected to be the biggest party in the devolved government. Meanwhile, Chris Elmore was able to retain the Westminster seat of Ogmore for Labour in a by-election triggered by Huw Irranca Davies' successful attempt to run for the Welsh Assembly.

Elsewhere, Labour has lost control of at least one local authority and tens of council seats across England and Wales. The Scottish National Party (SNP) has secured a third victory in the Holyrood elections, with Scottish Labour being beaten into third by the Scottish Conservatives.

But Nicola Sturgeon's party failed to secure a majority (65) in the Scottish Parliament as the Liberal Democrats and Tories made gains. Ruth Davidson, the Scottish Conservative leader, said: "There are people right across Scotland who are sending the SNP a message – the voices and the decision we made as a country will not be ignored."