Joe McElderry is winner of the X Factor HOT favourite Joe McElderry was celebrating today after winning the coveted X Factor title and a life-changing record contract.
The 18-year-old student from South Shields beat Olly Murs in the public vote.
Joe beat 200,000 applicants to The X Factor and more than 10 million public votes were cast.
Following his win he hugged his mentor, fellow Geordie Cheryl Cole, and said: I cant actually speak and I just want to say thank you to Cheryl, shes been an amazing mentor.
He also thanked the other judges and everyone who voted for him.
Cheryl told him: I feel over the moon, Im absolutely delighted. The right person won. Im so proud of you. The North East are going to be going mad.
McElderrys single The Climb was available for download from midnight last night and will be in the shops on Wednesday.
Simon Cowell told Joe he was gutted for Olly but thrilled for you because you're brilliant.
It was Cheryls second victory in a row after mentoring winner Alexandra Burke in last years competition.
Bookmakers said Joe was now the red-hot favourite to secure Christmas number one with Ladbrokes cutting his odds of landing the top spot to 1/8.
In a sign of the shows ability to draw in the world's top stars, Sir Paul McCartney appeared on the final show singing Drive My Car with Joe, Olly and this year's other 10 X Factor finalists.
Asked for his views on the final pair, Sir Paul said: I think theyre both good, you know, one of thems going to win.
Speaking after the show Joe told ITV2s Xtra Factor: I couldnt believe it. I nearly collapsed on stage. Its amazing.
I feel like Im floating, just floating around, and I just feel like jelly.
There was a bit of pressure but I just thought, I made it to the final, so I thought I would just go for it and give it my best shot.
Ive had the best experience of my life.
Olly said: Ive had a great time and really enjoyed it, regardless of what happened.
I came out there fighting, did the best I could. The best guy won and Joe deserves it.
A National Grid spokeswoman said there was a surge in demand equivalent to more than 250,000 people switching on their kettles 750 megawatts or the output of a medium-sized power station after the final finished. THE ECHO