WE were promised strong and stable government but we got the exact opposite. That’s the trouble with democracy – it sometimes produces the result you least expect.

The Conservatives ran a terrible campaign based on Theresa May’s personality. By the time it dawned that Mrs May didn’t have a personality – or at least one which chimed with the electorate – it was too late to change course.

Mrs May resolutely failed to live up to her star billing. Her public appearances were painfully stage-managed, on the few occasions she was put on the spot by the public she looked at a loss for words and her decision not to appear on a live TV leaders debate was a mistake.

What a huge contrast with Jeremy Corbyn. Written off as a busted flush at the start of the campaign by the end of it his party was within a hair’s breadth of the Tories.

This may be the high-water mark of Mr Corbyn’s political career – whether it is or not is largely down to him.

His position is pretty much unassailable for the next few years. Will he use that power to bring Labour together and shape it into a serious opposition, or will he preside over the backstabbing and sniping that blighted his tenure until the past few weeks?

For the Conservatives, there is no time for recrimination. Brexit negotiations are due to begin and right now the UK looks woefully under-prepared. As painful as this result is for Mrs May her focus now must be on getting the best deal for the country.