Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley (Scottish Parliament constituency)
|Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley|
for the Scottish Parliament
|Party||Scottish National Party|
|Council area||East Ayrshire
Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley is a county constituency of the Scottish Parliament at Holyrood, Scotland. It elects one Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) by the plurality (first past the post) method of election. Also, it is one of nine constituencies in the South Scotland electoral region, which elects seven additional members, in addition to the nine constituency MSPs, to produce a form of proportional representation for the region as a whole.
The other eight constituencies of the South Scotland region are Ayr; Clydesdale; Dumfriesshire; East Lothian; Ettrick, Roxburgh and Berwickshire; Galloway and West Dumfries; Kilmarnock and Irvine Valley and Midlothian South, Tweeddale and Lauderdale.
The region covers the Dumfries and Galloway council area, the East Ayrshire council area, part of the East Lothian council area, part of the Midlothian council area, the Scottish Borders council area, the South Ayrshire council area and part of the South Lanarkshire council area.
Constituency boundaries and council areas
The Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley constituency was created at the same time as the Scottish Parliament, in 1999, with the name and boundaries of an existing Westminster constituency. In 2005, however, Scottish Westminster (House of Commons) constituencies were mostly replaced with new constituencies.
Following their First Periodic review into constituencies to the Scottish Parliament in time for the 2011 Scottish Parliament election, the Boundary Commission for Scotland recommended redrawing the Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley constituency.
The electoral wards used in the creation of Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley are:
- Kyle, Maybole, North Carrick and Coylton, Girvan and South Carrick, Ballochmyle, Cumnock and New Cumnock, Doon Valley
Constituency profile and voting patterns
The rural constituency of Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley is a diverse and sparsely populated area made up of former mining communities, outlying suburban villages, fertile farmlands and coastal resorts. Carrick stretches along the rugged and idyllic Ayrshire coast between Ayr and Galloway, taking in Culzean Castle and the resorts of Turnberry, home to the renowned Turnberry hotel and golf course, and Maidens. The main population centres within Carrick are Girvan, which serves as the area's main harbour, and Maybole, the historic capital of the kingdom of Carrick: both of which are among the most deprived areas in Scotland and are primarily made up of former social housing. The north-west of the constituency contains a mix of affluent and deprived villages with high levels of deprivation along the former mining villages of Tarbolton, Annbank and Mossblown. The more affluent suburban villages of Dundoald, Loans, Coylton and Symington serve as commuter villages to Ayr, Prestwick and Troon. Cumnock, Doon Valley and Ballochmyle in the East Ayrshire section of the constituency housed the central headquarters of coal mining operations in the Ayrshire area prior to the industry's collapse in the 1980s. The area is predominantly composed of dispersed and deprived former mining communities. The Trade Union movement was particularly strong in the area during the 1980s and 1990s. Keir Hardie, who is regarded as one of the primary founders of the Labour party, was active in organising a local trade union for miners in the area during the late 1800s.
Overall, the constituency had a slightly higher rate of unemployment compared to the Scottish average at the 2011 census, at 5.5% compared to the wider Scottish average of 4.8%, with a significantly higher portion of the constituency's populous residing in council housing compared with the rest of Scotland at 22.6% to the Scottish average of 13.2%.
At Westminster the equivalent South Ayrshire and later Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley constituencies consistently returned Labour MP's since the 1930s. The area was among the most reliable and safest Labour areas in Scotland, with Labour continually gaining the majority of the vote in almost all electoral wards in the constituency. At a local level almost all parts of the former Westminster constituency have consistently supported Labour with the exception of northern Girvan: this area is comparably more affluent compared to the rest of the constituency, it is made up of urban housing and as such has been marginally fought between the Conservatives and Labour. The Conservatives have performed stronger in some affluent villages around Ayr, Prestwick and Troon - topping the poll in Coylton, Dundoald, Loans and Symington at the 2003 local election for South Ayrshire. At the 1979 UK general election the Scottish Labour Party - a pro-independence breakaway group from the UK Labour Party - polled second place in the constituency at just 1,521 votes behind Labour's George Foulkes.
Although the SNP have traditionally performed poorly in Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley they were able to secure the Scottish Parliamentary constituency in 2011 with a majority of 2,581 votes. In 2016 Labour's support in the constituency slumped, with the Conservatives increasing their vote share by 9.7% to take 24.2% of the vote, narrowly behind Labour's 27.4%, allowing Jeane Freeman of the SNP to increase Adam Ingram's initial majority of 2,581 in 2011 to 6,006 in 2016 despite seeing little change in the SNP's vote share in the constituency.
Member of the Scottish Parliament
|2011||Adam Ingram||Scottish National Party|
|2016||Jeane Freeman||Scottish National Party|
|Scottish Parliament election, 2016: Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley|
Blue background denotes the winner of the electorate vote.
|Liberal Democrats||Dawud Islam||640||2.0||-0.2||549||1.7%|
|Total Valid votes||31,680||31,787|
|Scottish Parliament election, 2011: Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley|
|Liberal Democrats||Andrew Chamberlain||624||2.2||-1.6|
|SNP gain from Labour||Swing|
|Scottish Parliament election, 2007: Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley|
|Liberal Democrats||Paul McGreal||1,409||4.2||+0.4|
|Equal Parenting Alliance||Ray Barry||124||0.4||N/A|
|Scottish Parliament election, 2003: Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley|
|Scottish Socialist||Murray Steele||1715||4.99||N/A|
|Liberal Democrats||Caron Howden||1315||3.83||-2.11|
|Scottish Parliament election, 1999: Carrick, Cumnock and Doon Valley|
|Liberal Democrats||David Rainsford Hannay||2,441||5.94||N/A|
- See The 5th Periodical Report of the Boundary Commission for Scotland Archived September 21, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
- 'Area Profiles'
- 'Scottish Parliament election results 2016' - accessed 9 May 2016
- BBC election results