Weston-super-Mare (UK Parliament constituency)

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Weston-super-Mare
County constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of Weston-super-Mare in Avon.
Outline map
Location of Avon within England.
County Somerset
Electorate 78,778 (December 2010)[1]
Major settlements Congresbury
Current constituency
Created 1918
Member of Parliament John Penrose (Conservative)
Number of members One
Created from North Somerset
Overlaps
European Parliament constituency South West England

Weston-super-Mare is a constituency[n 1] represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2005 by John Penrose, a Conservative.[n 2]

History[edit]

The seat was created under the Representation of the People Act 1918. Its forerunner was the North Somerset division created in 1885.

The by-election of 1934 was triggered by the acceptance of the appointment of Lord Erskine to the position of Governor of Madras Presidency, that of 1958 by the death of Ian Orr-Ewing and that of 1969 by the death of David Webster following an accident.

Political history

The seat has alternated in representation between 1992 and 2005: in the election of 1997 the fresh Conservative candidate, Margaret Daly failed to hold the seat which led to Weston Super Mare's first marginal majority since 1923, obtained by Brian Cotter, a Liberal Democrat. Since this date all of the majorities have been lower than 3,000 votes, remaining strongly marginal and seeing in 2005 Cotter lose the seat to John Penrose.

In terms of other parties, the last occasion on which the Labour candidate achieved second place was at the 1970 general election.

Frontbenchers

Boundaries[edit]

The constituency covers the southern half of North Somerset Unitary Authority, including its only town, Weston-super-Mare on the Bristol Channel.

The seat has electoral wards:

History of boundaries[edit]

Changes for 1950

Under the first periodic review the Weston constituency lost Portishead, Gordano, Nailsea, Backwell and Long Ashton wards/areas to North Somerset constituency.

Changes for 1983

Under the third periodic review the Weston constituency lost Berrow, Brent Knoll, Axbridge, Cheddar, and Mark and Wedmore wards to Wells, and Clevedon to Woodspring which temporarily took the place of North Somerset until 2010.

Changes for 1997

Under the fourth periodic review the Weston constituency lost Yatton and Wrington to Woodspring.

Changes for 2010

Parliament accepted the Boundary Commission's Fifth Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies by making slight changes to this constituency for the 2010 general election, namely the loss of only 181 electors in Butcombe (in the ward of Wrington, no longer in the seat at all) to North Somerset.

Constituency profile[edit]

The town grew as a relatively late-Victorian affluent resort with many green spaces and gardens south of the headland, Sand Point which denotes the sandier beach of the town and of Burnham on Sea relative to northerly shores such as at Clevedon.

Work in tourism and visitor attractions is seasonal but other areas of the economy locally, such as customer services operations, freight, haulage and distribution, social, care, elderly and health services as well as retail, manufacturing and materials/foods processing provide employment. Workless claimants who were registered jobseekers were in November 2012 lower than the national average of 3.8%, at 3.5% of the population based on a statistical compilation by The Guardian.[2]

Members of Parliament[edit]

Election Member[3] Party
1918 Sir Gilbert Wills, Bt. Conservative
1922 Lord Erskine[n 3] Conservative
1923 Frank Murrell Liberal
1924 Lord Erskine Conservative
1934 by-election Ian Orr-Ewing Conservative
1958 by-election David Webster Conservative
1969 by-election Jerry Wiggin Conservative
1997 Brian Cotter Liberal Democrat
2005 John Penrose Conservative

Elections[edit]

Elections in the 2010s[edit]

General Election 2015: Weston-super-Mare[4]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative John Penrose
Liberal Democrat Mike Bell
Labour Tim Taylor
UKIP Ernie Warrender
General Election 2010: Weston-super-Mare[5][6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative John Penrose 23,356 44.3 +4.0
Liberal Democrat Mike Bell 20,665 39.2 +3.1
Labour David Bradley 5,772 10.9 -7.8
UKIP Paul Spencer 1,406 2.7 +0.2
BNP Peryn Parsons 1,098 2.1 +0.5
English Democrats John Peverelle 275 0.5 +0.5
Independent Steve Satch 144 0.3 +0.3
Majority 2,691 5.1
Turnout 52,716 67.2 +1.5
Conservative hold Swing +0.4

Elections in the 2000s[edit]

General Election 2005: Weston-super-Mare[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative John Penrose 19,804 40.3 +1.6
Liberal Democrat Brian Cotter 17,725 36.1 −3.4
Labour Damien Egan 9,169 18.7 −1.1
UKIP Paul Spencer 1,207 2.5 +1.1
BNP Clive Courtney 778 1.6
Independent William Human 225 0.5
Demanding Honesty in Politics and Whitehall Paul Hemingway-Arnold 187 0.4
Majority 2,079 4.2
Turnout 49,095 65.5 +2.7
Conservative gain from Liberal Democrat Swing +2.5
General Election 2001: Weston-super-Mare[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Democrat Brian Cotter 18,424 39.5 -0.6
Conservative John Penrose 18,086 38.7 +1.0
Labour Derek Kraft 9,235 19.8 +1.9
UKIP Bill Lukins 650 1.4
Independent John Peverelle 206 0.4
Independent Richard Sibley 79 0.2
Majority 338 0.8
Turnout 46,680 62.8 -10.8
Liberal Democrat hold Swing -0.8

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

General Election 1997: Weston-super-Mare[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Democrat Brian Cotter 21,407 40.1
Conservative Mrs. Margaret Daly 20,133 37.7
Labour Derek Kraft 9,557 17.9
Referendum Party Tom Sewell 2,280 4.3
Majority 1,274 2.4
Turnout 53,377 73.7
Liberal Democrat gain from Conservative Swing
General Election 1992: Weston-super-Mare[6][7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 30,022 47.7 −1.7
Liberal Democrat Brian Cotter 24,680 39.3 +3.7
Labour David E. Murray 6,913 11.0 −0.4
Green Richard Lawson 1,262 2.0 −1.6
Majority 5,342 8.5 −5.4
Turnout 62,877 79.7 +4.1
Conservative hold Swing −2.7

Elections in the 1980s[edit]

General Election 1987: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 28,547 49.4
Social Democratic John Crockford-Hawley 20,549 35.6
Labour Paul Loach 6,584 11.4
Green Richard Lawson 2,067 3.6
Majority 7,998 13.8
Turnout 57,747 75.7
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1983: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 27,948 53.6
Social Democratic Jonathan Marks 18,457 35.4
Labour Roger Berry 5,781 11.1
Majority 9,491 18.2
Turnout 52,186 73.1
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1970s[edit]

General Election 1979: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 40,618 56.9
Liberal Rowland Morgan 16,305 22.9
Labour Alan Taylor 14,420 20.2
Majority 24,313 34.0
Turnout 71,343 77.5
Conservative hold Swing
General Election October 1974: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 31,028 48.8
Liberal Roger Miller 18,169 28.6
Labour Peter Owen 14,057 22.1
United Democratic Eric Iszatt 296 0.5
Majority 12,859 20.2
Turnout 63,550 74.8
Conservative hold Swing
General Election February 1974: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 33,838 50.0
Liberal Philip Golding 20,237 29.9
Labour Roy Morris 13,542 20.0
Majority 13,601 20.1
Turnout 67,617 80.1
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1970: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 33,816 57.9
Labour Sarah Palmer 14,473 24.8
Liberal Edward Deal 10,120 17.3
Majority 19,343 33.1
Turnout 58,409 73.7
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1960s[edit]

Weston-super-Mare by-election 27th March 1969
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Jerry Wiggin 29,211 65.7
Liberal Edward Deal 8,739 19.7
Labour Nicholas Bosanquet 6,504 14.6
Majority 20,472 46.0
Turnout 44,454 60.8
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1966: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Webster 27,733 52.1
Labour Melvyn Butcher 15,340 28.8
Liberal Ian McDonald 10,173 19.1
Majority 12,393 23.3
Turnout 53,246 78.5
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1964: Weston-super-Mare[8]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Webster 27,143 53.1
Labour Jessie Stephen 12,248 23.9
Liberal Ian McDonald 11,771 23.0
Majority 14,895 29.2
Turnout 51,162 79.0
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1950s[edit]

General Election 1959: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Webster 27,881 57.5
Labour Edward Hampton 10,977 22.7
Liberal Edward Taylor 9,609 19.8
Majority 16,904 34.8
Turnout 48,467 79.7
Conservative hold Swing
Weston-super-Mare by-election 12th June 1958
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative David Webster 21,271 49.3
Labour Edward Hampton 11,295 26.2
Liberal Edward Taylor 10,588 24.5
Majority 9,976 23.1
Turnout 43,154 72.2
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1955: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Sir Ian Orr-Ewing 27,357 62.7
Labour Robert Andrews 16,275 37.3
Majority 11,082 25.4
Turnout 43,632 73.8
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1951: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ian Orr-Ewing 30,485 65.7
Labour Robert Andrews 15,942 34.3
Majority 14,543 31.4
Turnout 46,427 79.7
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1950: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ian Orr-Ewing 26,767 56.4
Labour Michael Hill 13,294 28.0
Liberal Frederick Archie Kew 7,394 15.6
Majority 13,473 53.6
Turnout 47,455 83.1
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1940s[edit]

General Election 1945: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ian Orr-Ewing 30,720 49.5
Labour Bruce Cardew 20,542 33.1
Liberal Stanley Sanger 10,804 17.4
Majority 10,178 16.4
Turnout 62,066 73.7
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1930s[edit]

General Election 1935: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ian Orr-Ewing 27,735 65.7
Liberal Henry Folliott Scott-Stokes 7,883 18.7
Labour George Elvin 6,625 15.7
Majority 19,852 47.0
Turnout 42,243 66.4
Conservative hold Swing
Weston-super-Mare by-election June 1934
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ian Orr-Ewing 21,203 61.5
Liberal Henry Folliott Scott-Stokes 7,551 21.9
Labour Albert Millett 5,715 16.6
Majority 13,652 39.6
Turnout 34,469
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1931: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Lord John Erskine 35,255 85.7
Labour Bernard Craig 5,905 14.3
Majority 29,350 71.4
Turnout 41,160 71.8
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1920s[edit]

General Election 1929: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Lord John Erskine 22,898 52.2
Liberal William Ewart Morse 16,219 37.0
Labour Mrs. Constance Elizabeth Borrett 4,766 10.9
Majority 6,670 15.2
Turnout 43,883 79.6
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1924: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Lord John Erskine 17,987 55.8
Liberal Frank Edric Joseph Murrell 12,895 40.0
Labour Raphael Neft 1,343 4.2
Majority 5,092 15.8
Turnout 32,225 81.7
Conservative gain from Liberal Swing
General Election 1923: Weston-super-Mare

Electorate 37,588

Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Liberal Frank Edric Joseph Murrell 15,223 51.5
Conservative Lord John Erskine 14,318 48.5
Majority 905 3.0
Liberal gain from Conservative Swing
General Election 1922: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Lord John Erskine 15,552 55.1
Liberal Frank Edric Joseph Murrell 12,674 44.9
Majority 2,878 10.2
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1910s[edit]

General Election 1918: Weston-super-Mare
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Coalition Conservative Sir Gilbert Wills 13,494 65.5
Liberal Edmund Thruston 7,104 34.5
Majority 6,390 31.0
Coalition Conservative hold Swing
  • Constituency created 1918 from parts of Wells and North Somerset constituencies.

The constituency comprised the Urban Districts of Weston-super-Mare, Clevedon and Portishead, and the Rural Districts of Axbridge and Long Ashton.

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.
  3. ^ Heir to the Earl of Mar, however predeceased his father. This title has a subsidiary title gained by one of the clan's forebears, remaining as a courtesy title, Lord Erskine, which attaches to its current holder's eldest son.
References
  1. ^ "Electorate Figures — Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  2. ^ Unemployment claimants by constituency The Guardian
  3. ^ "Weston-super-Mare 1918–". Hansard. Retrieved 6 October 2012. 
  4. ^ http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/2015guide/weston-super-mare/
  5. ^ Turner, Graham (20 April 2010). "Election of a Member of Parliament, Weston-super-Mare Constituency" (PDF). Acting Returning Officer, North Somerset Council. Retrieved 20 April 2010. 
  6. ^ a b c d e "Weston-Super-Mare". The Guardian. Retrieved 27 December 2010. 
  7. ^ "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Retrieved 6 December 2010. 
  8. ^ "Stephen, Miss Jessie 8SUF/B/157". The National Archives. 1 July 1977. Retrieved 7 December 2012. 

Sources[edit]

  • The Constitutional Year Book for 1913 (London: National Union of Conservative and Unionist Associations, 1913)
  • F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1832–1885 (2nd edition, Aldershot: Parliamentary Research Services, 1989)
  • Michael Kinnear, The British Voter (London: BH Batsford, Ltd, 1968)
  • Henry Pelling, Social Geography of British Elections 1885–1910 (London: Macmillan, 1967)
  • Frederic A Youngs, jr, Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, Vol I (London: Royal Historical Society, 1979)