Welwyn Hatfield (UK Parliament constituency)
|for the House of Commons|
Boundary of Welwyn Hatfield in Hertfordshire.
Location of Hertfordshire within England.
|Electorate||71,766 (December 2010)|
|Member of Parliament||Grant Shapps (Conservative)|
|Number of members||One|
|European Parliament constituency||East of England|
The seat was called for by the second periodic review of Westminster seats (the first periodic review led by the Boundary Commission was in 1945 and followed that of the Representation of the People Act 1918). Its changes were made in time for the first 1974 general election which resulted in a temporary minority administration on a hung parliament.
- Political history
Despite its short history, the seat has seen two parties serve it, with two Labour periods of representation, during the longer part of the Labour Government 1974-1979 and during the first two terms of the Blair ministry. Other than this the seat has elected a Conservative as its MP.
The present majority more than tripled on the second election of Grant Shapps, in 2010, from a historically breakable (in the constituency) majority of 5,946 votes to the 26th largest Conservative share of the vote, which on standard uniform swing seen in elections since 1931 represents a safe seat.
- Prominent frontbenchers
The first MP ended his term in the Commons as the member for Welwyn Hatfield before which he was Defence Minister from 1970 to 1972 then a Foreign Office Minister until February 1974 - later that year Lord Balniel was awarded a life peerage,[n 3] accelerating and safeguarding his right to sit in the Lords. The second MP later became the politically neutral Lord Speaker, Baroness Hayman.
Melanie Johnson during five years of the Blair-Brown government was a frontbench minister: Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Minister for Competition and Consumers and the Minister for Public Health.
Grant Shapps was appointed the Minister of State for Housing and Local Government for the first two years of the UK coalition government 2010 before being appointed to chair his party.
Parliament accepted the Boundary Commission's Fifth Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies which recommended no changes to this constituency for the 2010 general election since which it has electoral wards:
- Brookmans Park and Little Heath, Haldens, Handside, Hatfield: Central, East, North, South and West wards, Hollybush, Howlands, Panshanger, Peartree, Sherrards, Welham Green, Welwyn North and Welwyn South wards in the Welwyn Hatfield District
Only a small part of the District is excluded, the ward (and village) of Northaw, which is in the Broxbourne constituency.
The area has a higher than average proportion of the managers, professionals and of the retired than much of Greater London with a strong local economy, retail and industrial/commercial premises are particularly in Hatfield and two of the four largest Hertfordshire economic towns, Stevenage and St Albans are close by. Accordingly, workless claimants who were registered jobseekers were in November 2012 significantly lower than the national average of 3.8%, at 2.4% of the population based on a statistical compilation by The Guardian.
Members of Parliament
|Feb 1974||Lord Balniel||Conservative|
|Oct 1974||Hélène Hayman||Labour|
Elections in the 2010s
|General Election 2010: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Liberal Democrat||Paul Zukowskyj||8,010||16.4||+2.2|
Elections in the 2000s
|General Election 2005: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Liberal Democrat||Sara Bedford||6,318||14.1||0.0|
|Conservative gain from Labour||Swing||+8.05|
|General Election 2001: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Liberal Democrat||Daniel Cooke||6,021||14.1||+0.5|
|ProLife Alliance||Fiona Pinto||230||0.5||+0.0|
Elections in the 1990s
|General Election 1997: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Liberal Democrat||Rodney S. Schwartz||7,161||13.5||−2.5|
|Residents Association||V. Ernest Cox||1,263||2.4||N/A|
|ProLife Alliance||Helen T. Harrold||267||0.5||N/A|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing||+11.05|
|General Election 1992: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Liberal Democrat||Robin G. Parker||10,196||16.7||−10.6|
|Natural Law||Ms. ET Lucas||264||0.4||N/A|
Elections in the 1980s
|General Election 1987: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Social Democratic||LP Granshaw||16,261||27.32|
|Independent Conservative||BI Dyson||401||0.67|
|General Election 1983: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Social Democratic||L Granshaw||15,252||26.46|
Elections in the 1970s
|General Election 1979: Welwyn Hatfield|
|National Front||P Ruddock||459||0.77|
|Conservative gain from Labour||Swing|
|General Election October 1974: Welwyn Hatfield|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing|
|General Election February 1974: Welwyn Hatfield|
Notes and references
- A county constituency (for the purposes of election expenses and type of returning officer)
- 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.
- Balniel joined his father, the Earl of Crawford, who from 1963 no longer had to be regularly elected as a representative peer
- "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011.
- The Electoral Commission 2010 results
- 2010 post-revision map non-metropolitan areas and unitary authorities of England
- 2011 Census
- Unemployment claimants by constituency The Guardian
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "W" (part 2)[self-published source][better source needed]
- Welwyn Hatfield, UKPollingReport
- "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Retrieved 2010-12-06.