Bradford Central (UK Parliament constituency)

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Bradford Central
Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
County West Riding of Yorkshire
Major settlements Bradford
18851955
Number of members One
Created from Bradford

Bradford Central was a parliamentary constituency in the city of Bradford, West Yorkshire, which returned one Member of Parliament (MP) to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Elections were held under the first-past-the-post voting system.

The constituency was created for the 1885 general election, when the Redistribution of Seats Act split the two-member Bradford constituency into three single-seat divisions. It was abolished for the 1955 general election.

Political history[edit]

For most of its existence, Bradford Central was a marginal seat, initially between the Liberal Party and the Conservatives or their Liberal Unionist allies. The Liberals held it for all but eleven of the years from 1885 to 1918, after which it became a Labour-Conservative marginal. Control alternated between Labour and the Conservatives through the 1920s and 1930s, and in 1945 it became a safe seat for Labour.

Members of Parliament[edit]

Election Member [1] Party [2][3] Notes
1885 William Edward Forster Liberal Bradford industrialist, MP for Bradford 1861–1885
1886 by-election George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal MP for Reading 1863–1885, held several ministerial offices
1895 James Leslie Wanklyn Liberal Unionist
1906 Sir George Scott Robertson Liberal Soldier, and author of a book on Kafiristan which inspired Kipling's The Man Who Would Be King
1916 by-election Sir James Hill, Bt. Liberal Elected unopposed at a by-election, defeated in 1918
1918 Henry Butler Ratcliffe Coalition Conservative
1922 William Leach Labour Under-Secretary of State for Air in the First Labour Government
1924 Anthony Gadie Conservative
1929 William Leach Labour
1931 George Eady Conservative
1935 William Leach Labour
1945 Maurice Webb Labour Minister of Food 1950–1951
1955 constituency abolished

Election results[edit]

Election Political result Candidate Party Votes % ±%
1951 general election [4]
Electorate: 49,625
Turnout: 41,558 (83.7%) −0.9
Labour hold
Majority: 8,872 (21.4%) −5.7
Swing: 2.8% from Lab to Con
Maurice Webb Labour 25,215 60.7 +2.0
Arthur Tiley Conservative 16,343 39.3 +7.6
1950 general election [5]
Electorate: 49,935
Turnout: 42,260 (84.6%) +8.4
Labour hold
Majority: 11,447 (27.1%) −3.8
Swing: 2.0% from Lab to Con
Maurice Webb Labour 24,822 58.7 +1.2
T. Boyce Conservative 13,375 31.7 +5.1
Charles Frederick Sarsby Liberal 4,063 9.6 −6.3
1945 general election [3]
Electorate: 38,331
Turnout: 29,205 (76.2%) +10.2
Labour hold
Majority: 8,988 (30.9%) +27.3
Swing: 14.2% from Con to Lab
Maurice Webb Labour 16,764 57.5 +6.7
T. L. Dallas Conservative 7,776 26.6 −21.6
Peter Edward Trench Liberal 4,665 15.9 N/A
1935 general election [3]
Electorate: 47,906
Turnout: 31,638 (66.0%) −12.2
Labour gain from Conservative
Majority: 1,156 (3.6%)
Swing: 13.2% from Con to Lab
William Leach Labour 16,397 51.8 +13.2
George Eady Conservative 15,241 48.2 −13.2
1931 general election [3]
Electorate: 51,996
Turnout: 40,673 (78.2%) −1.8
Conservative gain from Labour
Majority: 9,289 (22.8%)
Swing: 20.4% from Lab to Con
George Eady Conservative 24,986 61.4 +20.4
William Leach Labour 15,687 38.6 −20.4
1929 general election [3]
Electorate: 52,674
Turnout: 42,141 (80.0%) +3.5
Labour gain from Conservative
Majority: 7,611 (18.9%)
Swing: 10.7% from Con to Lab
William Leach Labour 24,876 59.0 +10.7
Anthony Gadie Conservative 17,265 41.0 −10.7
1924 general election [3]
Electorate: 45,127
Turnout: 34,506 (76.5%) +5.5
Conservative gain from Labour
Majority: 1,202 (3.4%)
Swing: 8.8% from Lab to Con
Anthony Gadie Conservative 17,854 51.7 +21.3
William Leach Labour 16,652 48.3 +3.7
1923 general election [3]
Electorate: 44,991
Turnout: 31,939 (71.0%) −4.4
Labour hold
Majority: 4,516 (14.2%) +7.9
Swing: 3.8% from Con to Lab
William Leach Labour 14,241 44.6 +1.8
J. Pearson Conservative 9,725 30.4 −5.7
Rev. William Paxton Liberal 7,973 25.0 +3.5
1922 general election [3]
Electorate: 44,689
Turnout: 75.4% (+0.7)
Labour gain from Conservative
Majority: 2,125 (6.3%)
Swing: 13.0% from Con to Lab
William Leach Labour 14,296 42.4 +11.1
Fred Denby Moore Conservative 12,171 36.1 −14.9
Rev. W. Paxton Liberal 7,250 21.5 +3.8
1918 general election [3]
Electorate: 44,549
Turnout: 24,374 (54.7%) −27.1
Coalition Conservative gain from Liberal
Majority: 4,798 (19.7%)
Swing: 27.7% from Lib to Con
Henry Butler Ratcliffe Coalition Conservative 12,434 51.0 +9.0
William Leach Labour 7,636 31.3 N/A
Sir James Hill, Bt Liberal 4,304 17.7 −40.3
1916 by-election [2]
Death of Sir George Scott Robertson
Liberal hold Sir James Hill, Bt Liberal unopposed
Dec 1910 general election [2]
Electorate: 9,848
Turnout: 8,058 (81.8%) −8.1
Liberal hold
Majority: 1,296 (16.0%) −2.6
Swing: 1.3% from Lib to Con
Sir George Scott Robertson Liberal 4,677 58.0 −1.3
G. H. R. Pauling Conservative 3,381 42.0 +1.3
Jan 1910 general election [2]
Electorate: 9,848
Turnout: 8,857 (89.9%) +4.0
Liberal hold
Majority: 1,641 (18.6%) +3.0
Swing: 1.5% from LibU to Lib
Sir George Scott Robertson Liberal 5,249 59.3 +1.5
Viscount Howick Liberal Unionist 3,608 40.7 −1.5
1906 general election [2]
Electorate: 9,978
Turnout: 8,568 (85.9%) +3.1
Liberal gain from Liberal Unionist
Majority: 1,340 (15.6%) +8.4
Swing: 4.2% from LibU to Lib
Sir George Scott Robertson Liberal 4,954 57.8 +4.2
Vicary Gibbs [6] Conservative 3,614 42.2 −4.2
1900 general election [2]
Electorate: 10,442
Turnout: 8,641 (82.8%) +5.2
Liberal Unionist hold
Majority: 627 (7.2%) +6.6
Swing: 3.3% from Lib to LibU
James Wanklyn Liberal Unionist 4,634 53.6 +3.3
A. Anderton Liberal 4,007 46.4 −3.3
1895 general election [2]
Electorate: 10,316
Turnout: 7,917 (77.6%) −0.7
Liberal Unionist gain from Liberal
Majority: 41 (0.6%)
Swing: 2.9% from Lib to LibU
James Wanklyn Liberal Unionist 4,024 50.3 +2.9
George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal 3,893 49.7 −2.9
By-election, 23 August 1892 [2][7]
Sitting MP seeks re-election
Liberal hold George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal unopposed
1892 general election [2]
Electorate: 11,434
Turnout: 8,955 (78.3%) +4.3
Liberal hold
Majority: 465 (5.2%) −0.2
Swing: 0.1% from Lib to LibU
George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal 4,710 52.6 −0.1
Marquess of Lorne Liberal Unionist 4,245 47.4 +0.1
1886 general election [2]
Electorate: 11,297
Turnout: 8,361 (74.0%) +2.9
Liberal hold
Majority: 459 (5.4%) −4.4
Swing: 2.2% from Lib to LibU
George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal 4,410 52.7 −2.2
Charles Norwood Liberal Unionist 3,951 47.3 +2.2
By-election 21 April 1886 [2]
Death of William Edward Forster
Electorate: 11,297
Turnout: 8,032 (71.1%) −8.6
Liberal hold
Majority: 780 (9.8%) −4.4
Swing: 3.7% from Lib to Con
George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal 4,407 54.9 −3.7
Edward Hoare Conservative 3,627 45.1 +3.7
1885 general election [2]
New constituency
Electorate: 11,297
Turnout: 9,007 (79.7%)
Liberal win
Majority: 1,543 (17.2%)
William Edward Forster Liberal 5,275 58.6
G. M. Waud Conservative 3,732 41.4

References[edit]

  1. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "B" (part 4)[self-published source][better source needed]
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1974]. British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. p. 79. ISBN 0-900178-27-2. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i Craig, F. W. S. (1983) [1969]. British parliamentary election results 1918–1949 (3rd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. p. 99. ISBN 0-900178-06-X. 
  4. ^ "UK General Election results October 1951, part 4". Richard Kimber's political science resources. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  5. ^ "UK General Election results February 1950, part 4". Richard Kimber's political science resources. Retrieved 9 July 2010. 
  6. ^ Vicary Gibbs had been the MP for St Albans from 1892 to 1904
  7. ^ The by-election in 1892 was caused by the appointment of George Shaw-Lefevre to the ministerial post of First Commissioner of Works. Until the 1920s, appointment as a minister required an MP to seek re-election.
  • British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, compiled and edited by F.W.S. Craig (The Macmillan Press 1974)