Basildon (UK Parliament constituency)

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Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of Basildon in Essex in 2005.
Outline map
Location of Essex within England.
County Essex
February 1974–2010
Number of members One
Replaced by Basildon and Billericay, South Basildon and East Thurrock
Created from Billericay
European Parliament constituency East of England

Basildon was a parliamentary constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It elected one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election.

It was created in 1974, mostly from the seat of Billericay. It was one of the best known bellwether constituencies in the Britain, having voted for the winning party in each election since its creation. The failure of the Labour Party to win it in the 1992 election — Basildon would be the first to declare of all the marginal seats — foreshadowed Labour's fourth straight defeat at the hands of the Conservative Party.


1974-1983: The urban district of Basildon.

1983-1997: The District of Basildon wards of Fryerns Central, Fryerns East, Langdon Hill, Lee Chapel North, Nethermayne, Pitsea East, Pitsea West, and Vange.

1997-2010: The District of Basildon wards of Fryerns Central, Fryerns East, Langdon Hills, Lee Chapel North, Nethermayne, and Vange; and the Borough of Thurrock wards of Corringham and Fobbing, Orsett, Stanford-le-Hope, and The Homesteads.

Following their review of parliamentary representation in Essex, the Boundary Commission for England made radical changes to all parliamentary constituencies in the county for the 2010 General Election, and the Basildon constituency was divided. The majority of the seat formed the basis of the new South Basildon and East Thurrock constituency, while the wards around central Basildon were merged with the bulk of the current Billericay constituency to form a new seat called Basildon and Billericay.


Further information: Essex man

Basildon was a (famously) Conservative seat between 1979 and 1997 as the quintessential "Essex man" constituency based on the new town of Basildon. Much of its population has its origins in the East End of London, who as a group traditionally voted for the Labour Party.

However, throughout the 1980s and until the Labour landslide victory of 1997, many voters in the area transferred their loyalties to the Conservative Party. The MP throughout that period was David Amess, who himself originated from east London (Plaistow), and now holds the safer seat of Southend West.

Labour took the seat in 1997 and 2001 with a large majority, and in 2005 with a reduced majority. Basildon thus proved to be a "bellwether" seat, voting for the eventual winning party since 1974.

Members of Parliament[edit]

Election Member[1] Party
Feb 1974 Eric Moonman Labour
1979 Harvey Proctor Conservative
1983 David Amess Conservative
1997 Angela Smith Labour Co-op
2010 constituency abolished: see Basildon and Billericay


Elections in the 2000s[edit]

General Election 2005: Basildon
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Co-op Angela Smith 18,720 43.4 -9.3
Conservative Aaron Powell 15,578 36.1 +2.3
Liberal Democrat Martin Thompson 4,473 10.4 +1.4
BNP Emma Colgate 2,055 4.8 +4.8
UKIP Alix Blythe 1,143 2.6 -0.8
Green Vikki Copping 662 1.5 +1.5
English Democrats Kim Gandy 510 1.2 +1.2
Majority 3,142 7.3
Turnout 43,141 58.4 +3.3
Labour Co-op hold Swing -5.8
General Election 2001: Basildon
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Co-op Angela Smith 21,551 52.7 -3.1
Conservative Dominic Schofield 13,813 33.8 +3.0
Liberal Democrat Jane Smithard 3,691 9.0 +0.3
UKIP Frank Mallon 1,397 3.4 N/A
Socialist Alliance Dick Duane 423 1.0 N/A
Majority 7,738 18.9
Turnout 40,875 55.1 -16.9
Labour Co-op hold Swing

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

General Election 1997: Basildon
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Co-op Angela Smith 29,646 55.8 +15.1
Conservative John Baron 16,366 30.8 -14.2
Liberal Democrat Lindsay Granshaw 4,608 8.7 -6.5
Referendum Party Craig Robinson 2,462 4.6 N/A
Majority 13,280 25.0
Turnout 53,082 72.0 -7.6
Labour Co-op gain from Conservative Swing 14.7

Due to constituency boundary changes between 1992 and 1997, the changes in percentage of vote share in 1997 are given relative to the notional 1992 results, which reflect what the results would have been in 1992 had the election been fought with the 1997 boundaries.

General Election 1992: Basildon[2]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Amess 24,159 44.9 +1.4
Labour Co-op John Russell Potter 22,679 42.2 +3.9
Liberal Democrat Geoffrey Williams 6,967 12.9 -5.3
Majority 1,480 2.8 −4.5
Turnout 53,805 79.8 +6.0
Conservative hold Swing -1.3

Elections in the 1980s[edit]

General Election 1987: Basildon
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Amess 21,858 43.5 +4.8
Labour Co-op Julian George Holder Fulbrook 19,209 38.3 +2.7
Liberal Raymond Michael Auvray 9,139 18.2 -7.5
Majority 2,649 5.3 +2.3
Turnout 50,206 73.8 +4.8
Conservative hold Swing +1.1
General Election 1983: Basildon
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Amess 17,516 38.7
Labour Co-op Julian George Holder Fulbrook 16,137 35.6
Social Democrat Sue Slipman 11,634 25.7
Majority 1,379 3.0
Turnout 45,287 69.0
Conservative gain from Labour Swing

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

Coordinates: 51°31′N 0°24′E / 51.52°N 0.40°E / 51.52; 0.40