Maidstone and The Weald (UK Parliament constituency)
|Maidstone and The Weald|
|for the House of Commons|
Boundary of Maidstone and The Weald in Kent.
Location of Kent within England.
|Electorate||70,576 (December 2010)|
|Major settlements||Maidstone, Meopham and Cranbrook.|
|Member of Parliament||Helen Grant (Conservative)|
|Number of members||One|
|Created from||Maidstone, Mid Kent, Tunbridge Wells|
|European Parliament constituency||South East England|
The largest settlement is the central county town of Maidstone in Kent in south-east England with smaller settlements spread throughout agriculture-rich Maidstone borough and partly wooded Tunbridge Well borough.
The constituency was created for the 1997 general election, after the previous Maidstone constituency was split in two: its southeast wards of Shepway and Park Wood of the town itself and the rural wards east of the town joined Faversham in the new Faversham and Mid Kent constituency. The remaining two-thirds of the electorate in west/central Maidstone were reunited with the town wards that had been lost to Mid Kent in 1983 (which was abolished), and joined by a rural part of the Weald to the south of the town, previously in the Tunbridge Wells constituency.
- History of members
The MP for the seat from its creation in 1997 was Ann Widdecombe of the Conservative Party. Widdecombe was MP for the former seat of Maidstone 1987-97, and served as a Home Office Minister (of State) in the government of John Major from 1995 to 1997, and as Shadow Home Secretary from 1999 to 2001. She stood down at the 2010 general election, to be succeeded by its winner, who was Helen Grant, also a Conservative.
Most of the electorate live in urban Maidstone, which has some light industry but whose economy is increasingly dominated by the service sector (including care, hospitality and insurance). The south of the constituency is rural with significant orchards and market gardens. Many residents commute to London, with the relevant terminus being London Bridge.[n 2] To summarise this is an urban-rural seat in a prosperous part of Kent.
Parliament approved the Boundary Commission's Fifth Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies in respect of this seat. Tenterden was transferred to Ashford. The modified Maidstone and The Weald constituency is formed from the following electoral wards:
- Allington, Barming, Bridge, Coxheath and Hunton (formerly "and Linton"), East, Fant, Heath, High Street, Loose, Marden and Yalding, North, South and Staplehurst the borough of Maidstone
- Benenden and Cranbrook, and Frittenden and Sissinghurst in the borough of Tunbridge Wells.
Members of Parliament
Elections in the 2010s
|General Election 2010: Maidstone and the Weald|
|Liberal Democrat||Peter Carroll||17,602||36.0||+13.8|
|National Front||Gary Butler||643||1.3||N/A|
Elections in the 2000s
|General Election 2005: Maidstone and the Weald|
|Liberal Democrat||Mark Corney||10,808||22.2||+2.3|
|UKIP||Anthony 'Felix' Robertson||1,463||3.0||+0.9|
|General Election 2001: Maidstone & The Weald|
|Liberal Democrat||Allison Wainman||9,064||19.9||-2.5|
Elections in the 1990s
|General Election 1997: Maidstone and the Weald|
|Liberal Democrat||J Nelson||11,986||22.36|
|Referendum Party||S Hopkins||1,998||3.73|
|Socialist Labour||Maureen Cleator||979||1.83|
|Natural Law||J Oldbury||115||0.22|
Notes and references
- "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011.
- consituency profile The Guardian
- 2010 post-revision map non-metropolitan areas and unitary authorities of England
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "M" (part 1)[self-published source][better source needed]
- BBC Election 2010, Maidstone and The Weald
- T. H. B. Oldfield, The Representative History of Great Britain and Ireland (London: Baldwin, Cradock & Joy, 1816)
- Robert Waller, The Almanac of British Politics (1st edition, London: Croom Helm, 1983; 5th edition, London: Routledge, 1996)
- Frederic A Youngs, jr, "Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, Vol I" (London: Royal Historical Society, 1979)