Bury St Edmunds (UK Parliament constituency)

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Bury St Edmunds
County constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk.
Outline map
Location of Suffolk within England.
County Suffolk
Electorate 85,933 (December 2010)[1]
Current constituency
Created 1918
Member of Parliament David Ruffley (Conservative)
Number of members One
1614–1918
Number of members 1614–1885: Two
1885–1918: One
Type of constituency Borough constituency
Overlaps
European Parliament constituency East of England

Bury St Edmunds is a constituency in Suffolk centred on the town of Bury St Edmunds that elects a Member of Parliament (MP) to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. The electorate has elected Conservative Party candidates at the general elections and two by-elections since the Liberal victory of 1880 however the Labour Party candidate came 368 votes short of winning it in 1997, less than 1% of the vote short.

In terms of election expenses and type of returning officer it has been a county constituency since 1918, before which it was a borough constituency that was created in 1614, returning two MPs to the House of Commons of England until 1707, then to the House of Commons of Great Britain until 1800, and from 1800 to the House of Commons of the United Kingdom. Its representation was reduced to one seat under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885; it was extended and its type was switched under the Representation of the People Act 1918.

Boundaries[edit]

The constituency contains the towns of Bury St Edmunds, Stowmarket and Needham Market. Its boundaries do not match those of St Edmundsbury borough, which includes Haverhill (part of West Suffolk constituency), and excludes Stowmarket and Needham Market.

Boundary review[edit]

Following their review of parliamentary representation in Suffolk the Boundary Commission for England recommended minor alterations to the previous constituency arrangement. The new boundaries came into force at the 2010 election.

The electoral wards used in the creation of this seat are:

  • From the district of Mid Suffolk: Bacton and Old Newton, Badwell Ash, Elmswell and Norton, Gislingham, Haughley and Wetherden, Needham Market, Onehouse, Rattlesden, Rickinghall and Walsham, Ringshall, Stowmarket Central, Stowmarket North, Stowmarket South, Stowupland, Thurston and Hessett, and Woolpit
  • From the district of St Edmundsbury: Abbeygate, Eastgate, Fornham, Great Barton, Horringer and Whelnetham, Minden, Moreton Hall, Northgate, Pakenham, Risbygate, Rougham, St Olaves, Southgate, and Westgate.

Members of Parliament[edit]

MPs 1614–1660[edit]

Parliament First member Second member
1614 Sir Thomas Jermyn Sir Robert Crane, 1st Baronet
1621 Sir Thomas Jermyn Josiah Woodford
1624 Sir Thomas Jermyn Anthony Crofts
1625 Sir Thomas Jermyn Sir William Spring
1626 Sir Thomas Jermyn Emanuel Gifford
1628 Sir Thomas Jermyn Sir William Hervey
1629–1640 No Parliaments summoned
1640 April Sir Thomas Jermyn John Godbolt
1640 November Thomas Jermyn,
disabled on 14 February 1644
Henry Jermyn, ennobled 6 Sep 1643 [2]
1645 Sir Thomas Barnardiston Sir William Spring,
excluded in Pride's Purge in 1648
1653 Bury St Edmunds not represented in Barebones Parliament
1654 Samuel Moody John Clarke
1656 Samuel Moody John Clarke
1659 John Clarke Thomas Chaplin[3]
1659 Restored Rump Parliament Sir Thomas Barnardiston Sir Wm. Spring died 1654

MPs 1660–1885[edit]

Two Members

Year First member[4] First party Second member[4] Second party
1660[5] Sir Henry Crofts Sir John Duncombe
1661 Sir Edmund Poley
1673 William Duncombe
1679 Sir Thomas Hervey Thomas Jermyn
1685 William Crofts
1689 Sir Robert Davers, Bt
1690 Henry Goldwell
1694 John Hervey
1701 Sir Thomas Felton, Bt
1703 Sir Robert Davers, Bt[6]
Dec. 1705 Aubrey Porter
1709 Joseph Weld
1712 Samuel Batteley
1713 Lord Hervey
1717 James Reynolds
1722 Sir Jermyn Davers, Bt
1725 Lord Hervey
1727 Thomas Norton
1733 Thomas Hervey
1747 Felton Hervey[7] Viscount Petersham
1756 The Earl of Euston
1757 Hon. Augustus Hervey
1761 Hon. Charles Fitzroy
1763 William Hervey
1768 Hon. Augustus Hervey
1774 Sir Charles Davers, Bt
1775 Henry Seymour Conway Whig
1784 Hon. George FitzRoy
1787 Lord Charles FitzRoy
1796 Lord Hervey
1802 Lord Charles FitzRoy
1803 The Lord Templetown
1812 Frederick Thomas Hervey Foster
1818 The Earl of Euston Hon. Arthur Upton
1820 Lord John FitzRoy
1826 Earl Jermyn Conservative Earl of Euston
1831 Lord Charles FitzRoy Liberal
1847 Edward Bunbury Liberal
1852 John Stuart Conservative
Dec 1852 by-election James Henry Porteous Oakes Conservative
1857 Joseph Alfred Hardcastle Liberal
1859 by-election Lord Alfred Hervey Conservative
1865 Edward Greene Conservative
1874 Lord Francis Hervey Conservative
1880 Joseph Alfred Hardcastle Liberal
1885 representation reduced to one member

MPs since 1885[edit]

Election Member[4] Party
1885 Lord Francis Hervey Conservative
1892 Henry Arthur Cadogan, Viscount Chelsea Conservative
1900 Sir Edward Greene, Bt. Conservative
1906 Frederick William Fane Hervey Conservative
1907 by-election Walter Edward Guinness Conservative
1931 Frank Heilgers Conservative
1944 by-election Edgar Mayne Keatinge Conservative
1945 Lt.-Col. Geoffrey Benedict Clifton-Brown Conservative
1950 William Aitken Conservative
1964 by-election Sir Eldon Griffiths Conservative
1992 Richard Spring Conservative
1997 David Ruffley Conservative

Elections[edit]

Elections in the 2010s[edit]

General Election 2015: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jo Churchill[8]
UKIP John Howlett
Labour William Edwards [9]
Liberal Democrat David Chappell
Green Helen Geake [10]
General Election 2010: Bury St Edmunds[11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Ruffley 27,899 47.5 +1.2
Liberal Democrat David Chappell 15,519 26.4 +6.7
Labour Kevin Hind 9,776 16.7 −10.7
UKIP John Howlett 3,003 5.1 +1.6
Green Mark Ereira-Guyer 2,521 4.3 +1.3
Majority 12,380 21.1 +2.2
Turnout 58,718 69.3 +2.5
Conservative hold Swing −2.8

It was announced that David Ruffley would be taking sick leave from 22 June 2010 to October 2010, with two neighboring constituency MPs (Matthew Hancock and Daniel Poulter) holding surgeries on his behalf, to allow Ruffley to recover from a period of depression.[12]

Elections in the 2000s[edit]

General Election 2005: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Ruffley 24,332 46.2 +2.7
Labour David Monaghan 14,402 27.4 −11.1
Liberal Democrat David Chappell 10,423 19.8 +5.9
UKIP John Howlett 1,859 3.5 +1.8
Green Graham Manning 1,603 3.0 N/A
Majority 9,930 18.9 +13.9
Turnout 52,619 66.1 +0.1
Conservative hold Swing +6.9
General Election 2001: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Ruffley 21,850 43.5 +5.1
Labour Mark Ereira-Guyer 19,347 38.5 +0.8
Liberal Democrat Richard Williams 6,998 13.9 −4.3
UKIP John Howlett 831 1.7 N/A
Independent Michael Brundle 651 1.3 N/A
Socialist Labour Michael Benwell 580 1.2 N/A
Majority 2,503 5.0 +4.3
Turnout 50,257 66 −9.0
Conservative hold Swing +2.1

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

General Election 1997: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Ruffley 21,290 38.3 −15.2
Labour Mark Ereira-Guyer 20,922 37.7 +14.1
Liberal Democrat David A. Cooper 10,102 18.2 −3.8
Referendum Party Ian C.H. McWhirter 2,939 5.3 N/A
Natural Law Ms. Joanna B. Lillis 272 0.5 −0.4
Majority 368 0.7 −29.3
Turnout 55,525 75.0 +0.6
Conservative hold Swing −14.6
General Election 1992: Bury St Edmunds[13]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Richard Spring 33,554 53.5 −5.8
Labour Tom Sheppard 14,767 23.6 +6.3
Liberal Democrat John B. Williams 13,814 22.0 −0.5
Natural Law Ms. Joanna B. Lillis 550 0.9 N/A
Majority 18,787 30.0 −7.8
Turnout 62,685 78.9 +4.8
Conservative hold Swing −6.1

Elections in the 1980s[edit]

General Election 1987: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 33,672 59.3 +0.3
Social Democratic Reginald Harland 12,214 21.5 −6.9
Labour C.L Greene 9,841 17.3 +4.8
Green I.M.J. Wakelam 1,057 1.9 N/A
Majority 21,458 37.8 −40.8
Turnout 76,619 74.1 +1.8
Conservative hold Swing +3.6
General Election 1983: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 31,081 59.0 −2.0
Social Democratic Reginald Harland 14,959 28.4 N/A
Labour W. Mosczynski 6,666 12.7 −16.3
Majority 16,122 22.1 −5.7
Turnout 72,875 72.3 −4.0
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1970s[edit]

General Election 1979: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 41,426 57.0 +6.6
Labour A. Gibson 21,167 29.0 −4.0
Liberal G. Jones 10,836 14.2 −2.4
Majority 20,259 27.8 +10.5
Turnout 95,621 76.3 +3.1
Conservative hold Swing +5.3
General Election October 1974: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 32,179 50.4 +2.9
Labour J.K Stephenson 21,097 33.0 +4.3
Liberal G Jones 10,631 16.6 −7.2
Majority 11,082 17.3 −1.5
Turnout 87,321 73.2 −8.1
Conservative hold Swing −0.7
General Election February 1974: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 33,424 47.5 −14.2
Labour J.K Stephenson 20,171 28.7 0.0
Liberal B. Boulton 16,772 23.8 N/A
Majority 13,253 18.8 −3.6
Turnout 86,202 81.3 +4.1
Conservative hold Swing −7.2
General Election 1970: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 36,688 61.7 +7.1
Labour C.J.V Seager 23,286 28.7 N/A
Majority 13,402 22.4 +13.3
Turnout 77,665 77.2 −1.6
Conservative hold Swing N/A

Elections in the 1960s[edit]

General Election 1966: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 27,782 54.6 +4.4
Labour C.J.V Seager 23,140 45.4 +5.2
Majority 4,462 9.1 -0.8
Turnout 64,609 78.8 -3.4
Conservative hold Swing -0.8
General Election 1964: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Eldon Griffiths 25,206 50.2 -8.6
Labour N.J. Insley 20,216 40.2 -1.1
Liberal R Afton 4,840 9.6 N/A
Majority 4,990 9.9 -7.6
Turnout 61,143 82.2 +3.6
Conservative hold Swing -7.5

Elections in the 1950s[edit]

General Election 1959: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative William Aitken 26,730 58.8 +3.7
Labour A M A Walter 18,768 41.3 -3.6
Majority 7,962 17.5 +7.2
Turnout 57,908 78.6 +0.3
Conservative hold Swing +3.6
General Election 1955: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative William Aitken 24,532 55.1 +0.7
Labour N Stanley 19,962 44.9 -0.7
Majority 4,570 10.3 +1.5
Turnout 56,854 78.3 -1.5
Conservative hold Swing +0.7
General Election 1951: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative William Aitken 24,679 54.4 +5.1
Labour N Stanley 20,690 45.6 +5.3
Majority 3,989 8.8 -0.2
Turnout 56,851 79.8 -2.7
Conservative hold Swing -0.1
General Election 1950: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative William Aitken 22,559 49.3 +0.6
Labour C McCall 18,430 40.3 +10.5
Liberal Henry William Sparham 4,780 10.4 -8.6
Majority 4,129 9.0 -9.9
Turnout 55,495 82.5 +14.7
Conservative hold Swing -4.9

Elections in the 1940s[edit]

General Election 1945: Bury St Edmunds [14]

Electorate 45,482

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Geoffrey Benedict Clifton-Brown 15,013 48.7 -7.5
Labour Miss Cecily Alicia McCall 9,195 29.8 n/a
Liberal H.C. Drayton 5,863 19.0 n/a
Common Wealth E. C. Gordon England 750 2.4 n/a
Majority 5,818 18.9 -6.5
Turnout 30,821 67.8 +17.0
Conservative hold Swing n/a

Following the death of Frank Heilgers on 16 January 1944 a by-election was held on 29 February 1944.

Bury St Edmunds by-election, 1944 [15]

Electorate

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Lt-Col. Edgar Mayne Keatinge 11,705 56.2 n/a
Independent Liberal Margery Irene Corbett Ashby 9,121 43.8 n/a
Majority 2,584 12.4 n/a
Turnout 20,828 50.8 n/a
Conservative hold Swing n/a

Elections in the 1930s[edit]

General Election 1935: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Frank Heilgers Unopposed
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1931: Bury St Edmunds
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Frank Heilgers Unopposed
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1920s[edit]

General Election 1929: Bury St Edmunds

Electorate

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist Rt Hon. Walter Edward Guinness 16,462 54.2
Liberal Malcolm Douglas Lyon 11,344 37.4
Labour Cllr Percy Austins 2,490 8.2
Majority 5,118 16.9
Turnout 30,372 78.0
Unionist hold Swing

On Guinness's nomination as Minister of Agriculture a by-election in 1925 was required under the electoral law of the time, which he won.

Bury St Edmunds by-election, 1925

Electorate 30,544

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist Rt Hon. Walter Edward Guinness 14,700 62.8
Liberal George Nicholls 8,703 37.2
Majority 5,997 25.6
Turnout 23,420 74.0
Unionist hold Swing
General Election 1924: Bury St Edmunds[16]

Electorate

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist Walter Edward Guinness 16,073 63.0
Liberal John Adam Day 9,392 37.0
Majority 6,681 26.2
Turnout 25,533 82.0
Unionist hold Swing

The Unionist candidate Walter E Guinness was elected unopposed in the 1918, 1922 and the 1923 general elections, so there are no votes for this election.

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  2. ^ The parliamentary or constitutional history of England|||| being a faithful account of all the most remarkable transactions in Parliament, from the earliest times. Collected from the journals of both Houses, the records, ..., Volume 9
  3. ^ http://books.google.com/books?id=I65pAAAAMAAJ&pg=RA1-PT16
  4. ^ a b c Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "B" (part 6)[self-published source][better source needed]
  5. ^ A double return was made, Thomas Chaplin and John Clarke were subsequently declared not duly elected.
  6. ^ At the general election in May 1705, Davers was also returned for Suffolk, for which he chose to sit.
  7. ^ Hon. Augustus John Hervey was also declared elected in April 1754, he and his uncle Felton having an equal number of votes. This election was declared void. At the subsequent by-election held on 9 Dec 1754, Felton Hervey was returned.
  8. ^ "Jo Churchill selected as Bury St Edmunds candidate for next election". ITN. 2014-11-05. Retrieved 2014-11-05. 
  9. ^ http://www.labour.org.uk/candidates
  10. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-suffolk-29906498
  11. ^ "UK > England > Eastern > Bury St Edmunds". BBC News. Retrieved 8 May 2010. 
  12. ^ Suffolk MP suffering depression granted sick leave
  13. ^ "UK General Election results April 1992". Richard Kimber's Political Science Resources. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Retrieved 2010-12-06. 
  14. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  15. ^ F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949; Political Reference Publications, Glasgow 1949
  16. ^ British parliamentary election results 1918-1949, Craig, F. W. S.

Sources[edit]

  • Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1977]. British parliamentary election results 1832–1885 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-26-4. 
  • Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1974]. British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-27-2. 
  • Craig, F. W. S. (1983) [1969]. British parliamentary election results 1918–1949 (3rd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X. 

Coordinates: 52°15′N 0°54′E / 52.25°N 0.90°E / 52.25; 0.90