Croydon Central (UK Parliament constituency)
|for the House of Commons|
Boundary of Croydon Central in Greater London.
|Electorate||76,980 (December 2010)|
|Member of Parliament||Gavin Barwell (Conservative)|
|Number of members||One|
|Created from||Croydon South|
|European Parliament constituency||London|
Croydon Central is a borough constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It elects one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election. The current MP is Conservative Gavin Barwell, who won by 2,969 votes in May 2010.
Croydon Central covers a wedge of the London Borough of Croydon to the east of central Croydon and is much more marginal than the other two seats within the borough, Croydon South (which is safely Conservative) and Croydon North (Labour). The northern parts are characterised by terraced houses and urban areas, with small council estates. Labour gains much support from in particular Addiscombe, Fieldway and Woodside and parts of Fairfield and Ashburton. The southern area, largely Conservative, consists of suburban semi-detached houses, populated by commuters, surrounded by golf courses and parkland. The wards of Shirley, Heathfield and parts of Ashburton give large Conservative votes. In the south east corner, there is a large former council estate, New Addington, with two electoral wards for the more than 10,000 rather isolated residents. The estate is largely white and there have been strong British National Party showings, although Labour has traditionally won the bulk of the votes on the estate.
Most of the office blocks and shopping centres of Croydon town centre, as well as the mainline railway stations are within this seat.
The constituency that preceded Croydon Central in this area, Croydon South (not to be confused with the current Croydon South constituency), had twice seen Croydon's only Labour MPs before the 1990s. David Rees-Williams had held the seat from the 1945 Labour landslide until unfavourable boundary changes in 1950. David Winnick won the seat in 1966 before losing in 1970 (he has been MP for the much safer seat of Walsall North in Staffordshire since 1979). Otherwise the seat had been firm Conservative territory.
Historically, Labour's strength in the area had been on the council estates, particularly New Addington. However, there were important demographic changes across Croydon that saw greater numbers of ethnic minorities and residents of inner London move to Croydon from the 1970s onwards, making the area, especially north west Croydon, more favourable for Labour.
In 1997, Croydon's seats were reduced from four to three and the displaced Conservative Members had to face one another for the right to stand in the new Croydon Central seat (Croydon North by then a Labour-held seat). The MP for Croydon North East, David Congdon, beat off Sir Paul Beresford, the MP for the former Croydon Central seat. However, three years after Labour had taken control of Croydon Council, Labour's Geraint Davies saw off Congdon with a majority of 4,000. He held the seat with a similar majority in 2001 but lost by just 75 votes to Conservative Andrew Pelling in 2005, with the Liberal Democrats and Green Party gaining some 7,000 votes between them.
Croydon Central covers the central and eastern parts of the London Borough of Croydon, one of the Borough's three seats. It is bordered by Croydon North and Croydon South, as well as the Beckenham constituency to the east. It is made up of eight electoral wards from the borough:
The present seat was created for the 1997 general election from most of the old Croydon Central constituency (losing Waddon to the new Croydon South) and part of the old Croydon North East constituencies. It covers an area that was Croydon South constituency until 1974 when part of East Surrey was incorporated into a new Croydon South constituency, following the creation of the London Borough of Croydon in 1965.
Following their review of parliamentary representation in South London, the Boundary Commission for England made minor changes to Croydon Central. Part of the South Norwood ward was transferred to the Croydon North constituency, while parts of the Croham, Selsdon and Ballards, and Waddon wards were transferred to Croydon South. These boundaries were first contested in 2010.
If the changes had been implemented at the 2005 General Election the seat was likely to have been retained by Labour. In the boundary changes over 3,000 electors moved into Croydon South and 2,500 electors into Croydon North.
Members of Parliament
|February 1974||John Moore||Conservative|
|1992||Sir Paul Beresford||Conservative|
Elections in the 2010s
|General Election 2010: Croydon Central|
|Labour Co-op||Gerry Ryan||16,688||33.5||-7.6|
|Liberal Democrat||Peter Lambell||6,553||13.2||+0.4|
|BNP||Cliff le May||1,448||2.9||N/A|
|Monster Raving Loony||John Cartwright||192||0.4||+0.0|
Elections in the 2000s
|General Election 2005: Croydon Central|
|Liberal Democrat||Jeremy Hargreaves||6,384||13.0||+1.8|
|Monster Raving Loony||John Cartwright||193||0.4||–0.5|
|The People's Choice! Exclusively For All||Janet Stears||101||0.2||N/A|
|Conservative gain from Labour||Swing||+4.4|
|General Election 2001: Croydon Central|
|Liberal Democrat||Paul Booth||5,156||11.2||+0.4|
|Monster Raving Loony||John Cartwright||408||0.9||N/A|
Elections in the 1990s
|General Election 1997: Croydon Central|
|Liberal Democrat||G Schlich||6,061||10.9||-2.4|
|Referendum Party||C Cook||1,886||3.3|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing||+15.5%|
|General Election 1992: Croydon Central|
|Conservative||Sir Paul Beresford||22,168||55.4||-1.2|
|Liberal Democrat||Miss Deborah J. Richardson||5,342||13.3||-5.7|
Elections in the 1980s
|General Election 1987: Croydon Central|
|Social Democrat||T. Burgess||7,435||19.02|
|General Election 1983: Croydon Central|
|Social Democrat||T. Burgess||8,864||22.86|
Elections in the 1970s
|General Election 1979: Croydon Central|
|Independent Conservative||M.J. Soper||238||0.47|
|Workers Revolutionary||P. Gibson||116||0.23|
|General Election October 1974: Croydon Central|
|General Election February 1974: Croydon Central|
Notes and references
- "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011.
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "C" (part 6)[self-published source][better source needed]
- General Election 2010 - Croydon Central BBC News
-  Croydon Council
- "Croydon Central (Archive)". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 17 November 2010. Retrieved 14 August 2011.
- "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Retrieved 6 December 2010.