Cardiff Central (Assembly constituency)

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Coordinates: 51°30′14″N 3°09′00″W / 51.504°N 3.150°W / 51.504; -3.150

Cardiff Central
National Assembly for Wales borough constituency
Cardiff Central (Assembly constituency).svg
South Wales Central (National Assembly for Wales electoral region).svg
Cardiff Central shown within the South Wales Central electoral region and the region shown within Wales
Current National Assembly for Wales borough constituency
Created 1999
Party Labour
AM Jenny Rathbone
Preserved county South Glamorgan

Cardiff Central is a constituency of the National Assembly for Wales. It elects one Assembly Member by the first past the post method of election. Also, however, it is one of eight constituencies in the South Wales Central electoral region, which elects four additional members, in addition to eight constituency members, to produce a degree of proportional representation for the region as a whole.


From 1999 Cardiff Central was a safe seat for the Liberal Democrats. However the seat was lost to Labour in 2011 with a huge 14.7% swing. In 2016 this was the Liberal Democrats target seat with their candidate Eluned Parrott a current regional AM for South Wales Central. The result actually saw a very slight increase in Labour's majority in a very disappointing night for the Liberal Democrats. The seat remains one of the most marginal in the assembly.

Furthermore in 2016 two former Big Brother (UK) participants were the candidates for Plaid Cymru and the Conservatives.


The constituency was created for the first election to the Assembly, in 1999, with the name and boundaries of the Cardiff Central Westminster constituency. It is entirely within the preserved county of South Glamorgan.

The other seven constituencies of the region are Cardiff North, Cardiff South and Penarth, Cardiff West, Cynon Valley, Pontypridd, Rhondda and Vale of Glamorgan.


In general elections for the National Assembly for Wales, each voter has two votes. The first vote may be used to vote for a candidate to become the Assembly Member for the voter's constituency, elected by the first past the post system. The second vote may be used to vote for a regional closed party list of candidates. Additional member seats are allocated from the lists by the d'Hondt method, with constituency results being taken into account in the allocation.

Assembly Members[edit]

Election Member Party Portrait
1999 Jenny Randerson Liberal Democrat Jenny Randerson.jpg
2011 Jenny Rathbone Labour Jenny Rathbone - National Assembly for Wales.jpg


Elections in the 2010s[edit]

Welsh Assembly Election 2016: Cardiff Central
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Jenny Rathbone 10,016 38.4 +0.5
Liberal Democrats Eluned Parrott 9,199 35.3 −2.4
Conservative Joel Williams 2,317 8.9 −6.2
Plaid Cymru Glyn Thomas Wise 1,951 7.5 +0.3
UKIP Mohammed Sarul Islam 1,223 4.7 +4.7
Green Amelia Womack 1,150 4.4 +4.4
Independent Jane Croad 212 0.8 +0.8
Majority 817 3.1 +2.9
Turnout 45.6 +7.6
Labour hold Swing +1.7

At the 2016 Election, this was the only seat in Wales where UKIP received less than 5% and thus lost their deposit.

Welsh Assembly Election 2011: Cardiff Central[1]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Jenny Rathbone 8,954 37.9 +16.0
Liberal Democrats Nigel Howells 8,916 37.7 −13.4
Conservative Matt Smith 3,559 15.1 +1.1
Plaid Cymru Chris Williams 1,690 7.2 −1.1
Independent Mathab Khan 509 2.2 N/A
Majority 38 0.2
Turnout 23,628 38.0 +2.0
Labour gain from Liberal Democrats Swing +14.7

Elections in the 2000s[edit]

Welsh Assembly Election 2007: Cardiff Central
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Democrats Jenny Randerson 11,462 51.2 −3.4
Labour Sue Lent 4,897 21.9 +2.0
Conservative Andrew Peter Murphy 3,137 14.0 +2.5
Plaid Cymru Thomas Stanley Whitfield 1,855 8.3 −0.4
UKIP Frank Roger Wyn Hughes 1,046 4.7 N/A
Majority 6,565 29.3 −5.4
Turnout 22,397 36.0 +3.0
Liberal Democrats hold Swing
Welsh Assembly Election 2003: Cardiff Central
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Democrats Jenny Randerson 11,256 54.6 +12.4
Labour Geoff M. Mungham 4,100 19.9 −10.1
Conservative Craig S. Piper 2,378 11.5 −0.2
Plaid Cymru Owen John Thomas 1,795 8.7 −6.0
Independent Raja G. Raiz 541 2.6 N/A
Independent Captain Beany 289 1.4 N/A
Independent Miss Madeleine E. Jeremy 239 1.2 N/A
Majority 7,156 34.7 +22.4
Turnout 21,052 33.7 −11.3
Liberal Democrats hold Swing

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

Welsh Assembly Election 1999: Cardiff Central
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Democrats Jenny Randerson 10,937 42.3 N/A
Labour Mark Drakeford 7,769 30.0 N/A
Plaid Cymru Owen John Thomas 3,795 14.7 N/A
Conservative Stephen Jones 3,034 11.7 N/A
Socialist Alliance Julian Goss 338 1.3 N/A
Majority 3,168 12.3 N/A
Turnout 25,873 44.8 N/A
Liberal Democrats win (new seat)


  1. ^ "Wales elections > Cardiff Central". BBC News. 6 May 2011. Retrieved 7 March 2011.