Saffron Walden (UK Parliament constituency)

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Saffron Walden
County constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of Saffron Walden in Essex.
Outline map
Location of Essex within England.
County Essex
Electorate 77,109 (December 2010)[1]
Major settlements Saffron Walden, Great Dunmow, Halstead
Current constituency
Created 1885
Member of Parliament Alan Haselhurst (Conservative)
Number of members One
Created from West Essex
Overlaps
European Parliament constituency East of England

Saffron Walden is a constituency[n 1] represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 1977 by Alan Haselhurst, a Conservative.[n 2]

Boundaries[edit]

New constituency boundaries which took effect at the 2010 general election removed the area around Halstead in Braintree district and replaced it with the northern wards of the Borough of Chelmsford.

Since these changes the seat has electoral wards:

  • Boreham and the Leighs; Broomfield and The Walthams; Chelmsford Rural West; Writtle in the Borough of Chelmsford
  • Ashdon; Barnston and High Easter; Birchanger; Broad Oak and the Halingburys; Clavering; Elsenham and Henham; Felsted; Great Dunmow North; Great Dunmow South; Hatfield Heath; Littlebury; Newport; Saffron Walden - Audley, Saffron Walden - Castle, Saffron Walden - Shire; Stansted North; Stansted South; Stebbing; Stort Valley; Takeley and the Canfields; Thaxted; The Chesterfords; The Eastons; The Rodings; The Sampfords; Wenden Lofts; Wimbish and Debden in the District of Uttlesford[2]

History[edit]

This constituency was created on slightly different, larger boundaries under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885. Aside from the towns much of the area is rural farmland and small villages.

This has been a Conservative safe seat based on election results since 1922, in which period the majorities have not been marginal.

Constituency profile[edit]

The constituency is by far the largest and most rural in Essex, and covers the entire north-west corner of the county - an area of almost 400 square miles (1,000 km2).[3] It borders Hertfordshire and Cambridgeshire, whilst also extending deep into the middle of Essex near Chelmsford.

Three medium-sized market towns, Saffron Walden, Dunmow and Halstead are in the constituency. All three have historic links, and are busy and regionally visitor-drawing towns in the South East.

The largest single source of employment in the constituency is Stansted Airport, while there are also a host of small businesses, many of them high-tech along and at the ends of the London-Cambridge corridor.

In statistics

The constituency consists of Census Output Areas of two local government districts with similar characteristics, taking that forming the bulk (i.e. Uttlesford) shows: a working population whose income is close to the national average and much lower than average reliance upon social housing.[4] At the end of 2012 the unemployment rate in the constituency stood as 1.6% of the population claiming jobseekers allowance, compared to the regional average of 2.4%.[5] The borough contributing to the bulk of the seat has a very low 10.1% of its population without a car, 17.7% of the population without qualifications and a high 31.9% had level 4 qualifications or above. In terms of tenure 71.6% of homes are owned outright or on a mortgage as at the 2011 census across the Uttlesford district.[6]

Members of Parliament[edit]

Saffron Walden in Essex, showing boundaries used from 1918 to 1950

Since a by-election in 1977, this safe Conservative seat has been represented by Sir Alan Haselhurst. It was also held for many years by former Chancellor of the Exchequer Rab Butler.

Election Member[7] Party
1885 Herbert Gardner Liberal
1895 Charles Gold Liberal
1900 Armine Wodehouse Liberal
1901 by-election Joseph Pease Liberal
Jan 1910 Douglas Proby Conservative
Dec 1910 Sir Cecil Beck Liberal
1922 Sir William Foot Mitchell Conservative
1929 Rab Butler Conservative
1965 by-election Sir Peter Kirk Conservative
1977 by-election Sir Alan Haselhurst Conservative

Elections[edit]

Elections in the 2010s[edit]

General Election 2015: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst
General Election 2010: Saffron Walden[8]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 30,155 55.4 +4.6
Liberal Democrat Peter Wilcock 14,913 27.4 -2.2
Labour Barbara Light 5,288 9.7 -4.5
UKIP Roger Lord 2,288 4.2 +1.5
BNP Chrissie Mitchell 1,050 1.9 +1.9
Green Reza Hossain 735 1.4 +1.4
Majority 15,242 28.0
Turnout 54,429 71.6 +2.8
Conservative hold Swing +3.4

Elections in the 2000s[edit]

General Election 2005: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 27,263 51.4 +2.5
Liberal Democrat Elfreda Tealby-Watson 14,255 26.9 +2.0
Labour Swatantra Nandanwar 8,755 16.5 −6.1
UKIP Raymond Tyler 1,412 2.7 −0.8
English Democrats Raymond Brown 860 1.6 N/A
Veritas Trevor Hackett 475 0.9 N/A
Majority 13,008 24.5
Turnout 53,020 68.3 +3.1
Conservative hold Swing +0.3
General Election 2001: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 24,485 48.9 +3.6
Liberal Democrat Elfreda Tealby-Watson 12,481 24.9 -1.9
Labour Tania Rogers 11,305 22.6 +1.1
UKIP Richard Glover 1,769 3.5 +2.4
Majority 12,004 24.0
Turnout 50,040 65.2 -11.7
Conservative hold Swing +2.3

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

General Election 1997: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 25,871 45.3 -11.3
Liberal Democrat Melvin Caton 15,298 26.8 +1.8
Labour Michael Fincken 12,275 21.5 -7.2
Referendum Party Richard Glover 2,308 4.0
UKIP I Evans 658 1.2
Independent Barry Tyler 486 0.9
Natural Law Christopher Edwards 154 0.3 -0.1
Majority 10,573 18.5 -13.1
Turnout 57,050 76.9 -6.3
Conservative hold Swing -6.6
General Election 1992: Saffron Walden[9]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 35,272 56.6 −1.1
Liberal Democrat Mark P. Hayes 17,848 28.6 −0.3
Labour John Kotz 8,933 14.3 +2.8
Natural Law Michael D. Miller 260 0.4 N/A
Majority 17,424 28.0 −0.8
Turnout 62,313 83.2 +4.2
Conservative hold Swing −0.4

Elections in the 1980s[edit]

General Election 1987: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 33,354 57.69
Liberal Mark P. Hayes 16,752 28.98
Labour R Gifford 6,674 11.54
Green GB Hannah 816 1.41
All Party Anti-Common Market W Oliver Smedley 217 0.38
Majority 16,602 28.72
Turnout 79.00
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1983: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 30,869 57.85
Social Democratic J Torode 15,620 29.27
Labour RP Trory 6,078 11.39
All Party Anti-Common Market W Oliver Smedley 797 1.49
Majority 15,249 28.58
Turnout 76.91
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1970s[edit]

General Election 1979: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 28,563 53.81
Liberal Andrew Phillips 13,200 24.87
Labour Ben Stoneham 10,547 19.87
Independent W Oliver Smedley 425 0.80
National Front R Bailey 342 0.64
Majority 15,363 28.94
Turnout 81.61
Conservative hold Swing
Saffron Walden by-election, 1977
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Alan Haselhurst 22,692 55.74 +12.03
Liberal Andrew Phillips 10,255 25.19 -5.13
Labour Ben Stoneham 5,948 14.61 -11.36
All Party Anti-Common Market W Oliver Smedley 1,818 4.47 N/A
Majority 12,437
Turnout 40,713
Conservative hold Swing
General Election October 1974: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Peter Michael Kirk 21,291 43.71
Liberal Frank P D Moore 14,770 30.32
Labour H Green 12,652 25.97
Majority 6,521 13.39
Turnout 78.07
Conservative hold Swing
General Election February 1974: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Peter Michael Kirk 23,013 44.58
Liberal Frank P D Moore 15,468 29.97
Labour J Dowsett 13,138 25.45
Majority 7,545 14.62
Turnout 83.40
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1970: Saffron Walden
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Peter Michael Kirk 24,549 52.92
Labour Kenneth Thomas Weetch 14,885 32.08
Liberal Frank P D Moore 6,959 15.00
Majority 9,664 20.83
Turnout 77.24
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1960s[edit]

General Election 1966: Saffron Walden Electorate 52,221
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Peter Michael Kirk 20,441 47.42
Labour Stephen Michael Alan Haseler 17,176 39.85
Liberal Frank P D Moore 5,487 12.73
Majority 3,265 7.57
Turnout 82.54
Conservative hold Swing
Saffron Walden by-election, 1965
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Peter Michael Kirk 18,851 48.5 -0.8
Labour Michael D Cornish 15,358 39.5 +2.0
Liberal Frank P D Moore 4,626 11.9 -1.4
Majority 3,493
Turnout
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1964: Saffron Walden

Electorate 50,724

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 20,610 49.3
Labour Michael D Cornish 15,655 37.5
Liberal Frank P D Moore 6,189 13.3
Majority 4,955 11.85
Turnout 82.41
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1950s[edit]

General Election 1959: Saffron Walden

Electorate 48,454

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 20,955 53.22
Labour Rev. Hampden N Horne 14,173 36.00
Liberal David J Ridley 4,245 10.78
Majority 6,782 17.23
Turnout 81.26
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1955: Saffron Walden

Electorate 47,922

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 20,671 54.21
Labour Rev. Hampden N Horne 14,253 37.28
Liberal Helen G Carson 3,209 8.42
Majority 6,418 16.83
Turnout 79.57
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1951: Saffron Walden

Electorate 47,836

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 20,564 51.95
Labour Reginald Groves 15,245 38.51
Liberal W Oliver Smedley 3,774 9.53
Majority 5,319 13.44
Turnout 82.75
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1950: Saffron Walden

Electorate 46,998

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 19,797 49.91
Labour Sidney Stanley Wilson 14,908 37.58
Liberal W Oliver Smedley 4,963 12.51
Majority 4,889 12.32
Turnout 84.40
Conservative hold Swing

Election in the 1940s[edit]

General Election 1945: Saffron Walden

Electorate 48,417

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 16,950 46.90
Labour Sidney Stanley Wilson 15,792 43.70
Liberal George Adolphus Edinger 3,395 9.39
Majority 1,158 3.20
Turnout 74.64
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1930s[edit]

General Election 1939/40: Another General Election was required to take place before the end of 1940. The political parties had been making preparations for an election to take place from 1939 and by the end of this year, the following candidates had been selected;

General Election 1935: Saffron Walden

Electorate

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 19,669 67.13
Labour Clara Rackham 9,633 32.87
Majority 10,036 34.25
Turnout 68.55
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1931: Saffron Walden

Electorate 41,659

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Rt Hon. Richard Austen Butler 22,501 77.67
Labour Sidney Stanley Wilson 6,468 22.33
Majority 16,033 55.35
Turnout 70.38
Conservative hold Swing
  • The Liberal candidate, Arthur Musgrove Mathews withdrew at the last minute

Elections in the 1920s[edit]

General Election 1929: Saffron Walden[11]

Electorate 40,253

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist Richard Austin Butler 13,561 44.5
Labour William Cash 8,642 28.3
Liberal Arthur Musgrove Mathews 8,307 27.2
Majority 4,919 16.2
Turnout 75.8
Unionist hold Swing
General Election 1924: Saffron Walden[12]

Electorate 32,590

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist William Foot Mitchell 12,289 51.6
Labour William Cash 6,340 26.6
Liberal Arthur Musgrove Mathews 5,195 21.8
Majority 5,949 25.0
Turnout 73.1
Unionist hold Swing
General Election 1923: Saffron Walden[13]

Electorate 32,212

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist William Foot Mitchell 9,652 44.3
Labour William Cash 6,398 29.3
Liberal Dr Robert McNair Wilson 5,752 26.4
Majority 3,254 150
Turnout 67.7
Unionist hold Swing
General Election 1922 : Saffron Walden[14]

Electorate 31,774

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Unionist William Foot Mitchell 9,844 43.6
Labour William Cash 6,797 30.1
National Liberal W D Harbinson 3,097 13.7
Liberal Dr Robert McNair Wilson 2,853 12.6
Majority 3,047 13.5
Turnout 71.1
Unionist gain from Liberal Swing

Elections in the 1910s[edit]

Sir Cecil Beck
General Election 1918

Electorate 31,682

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal 10,628 70.1
Labour James Joseph Mallon 4,531 29.9
Majority 6,097 40.2
Turnout 47.8
Liberal hold Swing
  • Beck was endorsed by the Coalition Government.
General Election December 1910 Saffron Walden[15]

Electorate 9,187

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Arthur Cecil Tyrrell Beck 4,071 50.2 +1.8
Conservative Douglas James Proby 4,031 49.8 -1.8
Majority 40 0.4 3.6
Turnout 88.2 -2.1
Liberal gain from Conservative Swing +1.8
General Election January 1910 Saffron Walden[15]

Electorate 9,187

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Douglas James Proby 4,283 51.6
Liberal Rt Hon. Joseph Albert Pease 4,011 48.4
Majority 272 3.2
Turnout 90.3
Conservative gain from Liberal Swing

Elections in the 1900s[edit]

Jack Pease
General Election 1906 Saffron Walden[15]

Electorate 8,779

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Joseph Albert Pease 4,203 58.9 +3.4
Conservative Sir Walter Balfour Barttelot 2,935 41.1 -3.4
Majority 1,268 17.8 +6.8
Turnout 81.3 -2.9
Liberal hold Swing +3.4
Saffron Walden by-election, 1901[16]

Electorate

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Joseph Albert Pease 3,994 55.5
Conservative Charles Wing Gray 3,202 44.5
Majority 792 11.0
Liberal hold Swing
General Election 1900 Saffron Walden[15]

Electorate 8,556

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Armine Wodehouse 3,247 50.9 -2.1
Conservative Charles Wing Gray 3,137 49.1 +2.1
Majority 110 1.8 -4.2
Turnout 74.6
Liberal hold Swing

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ A county constituency (for the purposes of election expenses and type of returning officer)
  2. ^ As with all constituencies, the constituency elects one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election at least every five years.
References
  1. ^ "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  2. ^ 2010 post-revision map non-metropolitan areas and unitary authorities of England
  3. ^ Grid reference Finder measurement tools
  4. ^ 2001 Census
  5. ^ Unemployment claimants by constituency The Guardian
  6. ^ 2011 census interactive maps
  7. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "S" (part 1)[self-published source][better source needed]
  8. ^ UK Polling Report: Saffron & Walden
  9. ^ "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Retrieved 2010-12-06. 
  10. ^ Report of the Annual Conference of the Labour Party, 1939
  11. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1983). British parliamentary election results 1918-1949 (3 ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X.
  12. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1983). British parliamentary election results 1918-1949 (3 ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X.
  13. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1983). British parliamentary election results 1918-1949 (3 ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X.
  14. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1983). British parliamentary election results 1918-1949 (3 ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X.
  15. ^ a b c d British parliamentary election results, 1885-1918 (Craig)
  16. ^ The Times, 3 June 1901 p7
Preceded by
Essex Western
UK Parliament constituency
1885–
Succeeded by
Current incumbent
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Leeds South
Constituency represented by the Chancellor of the Exchequer
1951–1955
Succeeded by
Bromley
Preceded by
Woodford
Constituency represented by the Father of the House
1964–1965
Succeeded by
Thirsk and Malton

Coordinates: 51°57′N 0°21′E / 51.95°N 0.35°E / 51.95; 0.35