Bradford Central (UK Parliament constituency)

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Bradford Central
Former Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
County West Riding of Yorkshire
Major settlements Bradford
18851955
Number of members One
Created from Bradford

Bradford Central was a parliamentary constituency in the city of Bradford, West Yorkshire, which returned one Member of Parliament (MP) to the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Elections were held under the first-past-the-post voting system.

The constituency was created for the 1885 general election, when the Redistribution of Seats Act split the two-member Bradford constituency into three single-seat divisions. It was abolished for the 1955 general election.

Political history[edit]

For most of its existence, Bradford Central was a marginal seat, initially between the Liberal Party and the Conservatives or their Liberal Unionist allies. The Liberals held it for all but eleven of the years from 1885 to 1918, after which it became a Labour-Conservative marginal. Control alternated between Labour and the Conservatives through the 1920s and 1930s, and in 1945 it became a safe seat for Labour.

Boundaries[edit]

1885-1918: The Municipal Borough of Bradford wards of Exchange, Lister Hills, Little Horton, North, and West.

1918-1950: The County Borough of Bradford wards of East, Exchange, Manningham, North, South, and West.

1950-1955: The County Borough of Bradford wards of Bradford Moor, Exchange, Manningham, North East, and South.

Members of Parliament[edit]

Year Member [1] Party [2][3]
1885 William Forster Liberal
1886 George Shaw-Lefevre Liberal
1895 James Wanklyn Liberal Unionist
1906 Sir George Robertson Liberal
1916 Sir James Hill Liberal
1918 Henry Ratcliffe Unionist
1922 William Leach Labour
1924 Anthony Gadie Unionist
1929 William Leach Labour
1931 George Eady Conservative
1935 William Leach Labour
1945 Maurice Webb Labour
1955 constituency abolished

Elections[edit]

Elections in the 1880s[edit]

General Election 1885: Bradford Central [4][5][6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal William Edward Forster 5,275 58.6 n/a
Conservative George Motley Waud 3,732 41.4 n/a
Majority 1,543 17.2 n/a
Turnout 9,007 79.7 n/a
Liberal win (new seat)
Hoare
Bradford Central by-election, 1886 [7][8]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Rt Hon. George John Shaw-Lefevre 4,407 54.9 -3.7
Conservative Edward Brodie Hoare 3,627 45.1 +3.7
Majority 780 9.8 -7.4
Turnout 8,032 71.1 -8.6
Liberal hold Swing -3.7
General Election 1886: Bradford Central [9][10]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Rt Hon. George John Shaw-Lefevre 4,410 52.7 -2.2
Liberal Unionist Charles Morgan Norwood 3,951 47.3 +2.2
Majority 459 5.4 -4.4
Turnout 8,361 74.0 +2.9
Liberal hold Swing -2.2

Elections in the 1890s[edit]

Lorne
General Election 1892: Bradford Central [11][12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Rt Hon. George John Shaw-Lefevre 4,710 52.6 -0.1
Liberal Unionist Marquess of Lorne 4,245 47.4 +0.1
Majority 465 5.2 -0.2
Turnout 8,955 78.3 +4.3
Liberal hold Swing -0.1
Bradford Central by-election, 1892 [13][14]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Rt Hon. George John Shaw-Lefevre unopposed n/a n/a
Liberal hold Swing n/a
General Election 1895: Bradford Central [15][16][17]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist James Leslie Wanklyn 4,024 50.3 n/a
Liberal Rt Hon. George John Shaw-Lefevre 3,893 49.7 n/a
Majority 41 0.6 n/a
Turnout 7,917 77.6 n/a
Liberal Unionist hold Swing n/a

Elections in the 1900s[edit]

General Election 1900: Bradford Central [18][19][20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist James Leslie Wanklyn 4,634 53.6 +3.3
Liberal Arthur Anderton 4,007 46.4 -3.3
Majority 627 7.2 +6.6
Turnout 8,641 82.8 +5.2
Liberal Unionist hold Swing +3.3
Gibbs
General Election 1906: Bradford Central [21][22]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Sir George Scott Robertson 4,954 57.8 +4.2
Conservative Vicary Gibbs 3,614 42.2 -4.2
Majority 1,340 15.6 8.4
Turnout 8,568 85.9 +3.1
Liberal gain from Liberal Unionist Swing +4.2

Elections in the 1910s[edit]

Robertson
General Election January 1910: Bradford Central [23][24]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Sir George Scott Robertson 5,249 59.3 +1.5
Liberal Unionist Charles Robert Grey, Viscount Howick 3,608 40.7 -1.5
Majority 1,641 18.6 +3.0
Turnout 8,857 89.9 +4.0
Liberal hold Swing +1.5
General Election December 1910: Bradford Central [25][26]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Sir George Scott Robertson 4,677 58.0 -1.3
Conservative George Henry Richard Pauling 3,381 42.0 +1.3
Majority 1,296 16.0 -2.6
Turnout 8,058 81.8 -8.1
Liberal hold Swing -1.3

General Election 1914/15:

Another General Election was required to take place before the end of 1915. The political parties had been making preparations for an election to take place and by the July 1914, the following candidates had been selected;

Bradford Central by-election, 1916 [27][28]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Sir James Hill unopposed n/a n/a
Liberal hold Swing n/a
General Election 1918: Bradford Central[29]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist 12,434 51.0 +9.0
Labour William Leach 7,636 31.3 n/a
Liberal Sir James Hill 4,304 17.7 -40.3
Majority 4,798 19.7
Turnout 24,374 54.7 -27.1
Unionist gain from Liberal Swing n/a
  • endorsed by Coalition Government

Elections in the 1920s[edit]

General Election 1922: Bradford Central[30]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour William Leach 14,296 42.4 +11.1
Unionist Fred Denby Moore 12,171 36.1 -14.9
Liberal William Paxton 7,250 21.5 +3.8
Majority 2,125 6.3 26.0
Turnout 75.4 +0.7
Labour gain from Unionist Swing +13.0
General Election 1923: Bradford Central[31]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour William Leach 14,241 44.6 +1.8
Unionist Jonas Pearson 9,725 30.4 -5.7
Liberal William Paxton 7,973 25.0 +3.5
Majority 4,516 14.2 +7.9
Turnout 31,939 71.0 -4.4
Labour hold Swing +3.7
General Election 1924: Bradford Central[32]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist Anthony Gadie 17,854 51.7 +21.3
Labour William Leach 16,652 48.3 +3.7
Majority 1,202 3.4 17.6
Turnout 34,506 76.5 +5.5
Unionist gain from Labour Swing 8.8
General Election 1929: Bradford Central[33]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour William Leach 24,876 59.0 +10.7
Unionist Anthony Gadie 17,265 41.0 -10.7
Majority 7,611 18.9 21.4
Turnout 42,141 80.0 +3.5
Labour gain from Unionist Swing +10.7

Elections in the 1930s[edit]

General Election 1931: Bradford Central[34]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative George Hathaway Eady 24,986 61.4 +20.4
Labour William Leach 15,687 38.6 -20.4
Majority 9,289 22.8 40.8
Turnout 40,673 78.2 -1.8
Conservative gain from Labour Swing +20.4
General Election 1935: Bradford Central[35]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour William Leach 16,397 51.8 +13.2
Conservative George Hathaway Eady 15,241 48.2 -13.2
Majority 1,156 3.6 26.4
Turnout 31,638 66.0 -12.2
Labour gain from Conservative Swing +13.2

Elections in the 1940s[edit]

General Election 1945: Bradford Central[36]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Maurice Webb 16,764 57.5 +6.7
Conservative T.L. Dallas 7,776 26.6 -21.6
Liberal Peter Edward Trench 4,665 15.9 n/a
Majority 8,988 30.9 +27.3
Turnout 29,205 76.2 +10.2
Labour hold Swing +14.2

Elections in the 1950s[edit]

General Election 1950: Bradford Central [37]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Maurice Webb 24,822 58.7 +1.2
Conservative Thomas Boyce 13,375 31.7 +5.1
Liberal Charles Frederick Sarsby 4,063 9.6 -6.3
Majority 11,447 27.1 -3.8
Turnout 42,260 84.6 +8.4
Labour hold Swing -2.0
General Election 1951: Bradford Central [38]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Maurice Webb 25,215 60.7 +2.0
Conservative Arthur Tiley 16,343 39.3 +7.6
Majority 8,872 21.4 -5.7
Turnout 41,558 83.7 -0.9
Labour hold Swing -2.8

References[edit]

  1. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "B" (part 4)[self-published source][better source needed]
  2. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1989) [1974]. British parliamentary election results 1885–1918 (2nd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. p. 79. ISBN 0-900178-27-2. 
  3. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1983) [1969]. British parliamentary election results 1918–1949 (3rd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. p. 99. ISBN 0-900178-06-X. 
  4. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  5. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  6. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1886
  7. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  8. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  9. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  10. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  11. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  12. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  13. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  14. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1916
  15. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  16. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  17. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1901
  18. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  19. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  20. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1901
  21. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  22. ^ The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  23. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  24. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1916
  25. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  26. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1916
  27. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  28. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1916
  29. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  30. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  31. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  32. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  33. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  34. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  35. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  36. ^ British Parliamentary Election Results 1918-1949, FWS Craig
  37. ^ British parliamentary election results, 1950-1973, FWS Craig
  38. ^ British parliamentary election results, 1950-1973, FWS Craig
  • British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, compiled and edited by F.W.S. Craig (The Macmillan Press 1974)