Electoral district of Upper Hunter

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Upper Hunter
New South WalesLegislative Assembly
StateNew South Wales
Dates current1856–1894
MPMichael Johnsen
PartyThe Nationals
Electors54,998 (2017)
Area27,687.50 km2 (10,690.2 sq mi)

Upper Hunter is an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly in the Australian state of New South Wales. It is represented by Michael Johnsen of the Nationals.

Upper Hunter covers the entirety of Dungog Shire, Muswellbrook Shire, Upper Hunter Shire, Liverpool Plains Shire (excluding the area around Werris Creek), the northern half of Singleton Shire (including Singleton itself), northeastern Mid-Western Regional Council (including Bylong) and part of Mid-Coast Council.[1]


In 1859, Upper Hunter replaced the Electoral district of Phillip, Brisbane and Bligh, established in the first Parliament in 1856. It had two members from 1880 to 1894. It was abolished in 1894 and largely replaced by Robertson and Singleton. In 1904 Robertson was abolished and Upper Hunter was recreated. It was abolished from 1920 with the introduction of proportional representation, but was recreated in 1927.

Upper Hunter is one of three electorates to have never been held by the Labor Party and always by the conservative side of politics since the abolition of proportional representation in 1927, the other two being Tamworth and Oxley. The Nationals have held the district without interruption since 1931.

Members for Upper Hunter[edit]

First incarnation (1856–1880, 1 member)
Member Party Term
  John Robertson None 1859–1861
  Thomas Dangar None 1861–1864
  James White None 1864–1868
  Archibald Bell None 1868–1872
  John Creed None 1872–1874
  Francis White None 1874–1875
  Thomas Hungerford None 1875–1875
  John McElhone None 1875–1880
(1880–1894, 2 members)
Member Party Term Member Party Term
  John McLaughlin None 1880–1885   John McElhone None 1880–1885
  Robert Fitzgerald None 1885–1887   Thomas Hungerford None 1885–1887
  Free Trade 1887–1889   John McElhone Free Trade 1887–1889
  Protectionist 1889–1894   William Abbott Protectionist 1889–1891
  Thomas Williams Labor 1891–1894
Second incarnation (1904–1920, 1 member)
Member Party Term
  William Fleming Liberal Reform 1904–1910
  William Ashford Labor 1910–1910
  Henry Willis Liberal Reform 1910–1913
  Independent Liberal 1913–1913
  Mac Abbott Liberal Reform 1913–1917
  Nationalist 1917–1918
  William Cameron Nationalist 1918–1920
(1927–present, 1 member)
Member Party Term
  William Cameron Nationalist 1927–1931
  Malcolm Brown Independent Country 1931–1932
  Country 1932–1939
  D'Arcy Rose Country 1939–1959
  Leon Punch Country 1959–1962
  Frank O'Keefe Country 1962–1969
  Col Fisher Country, National 1970–1988
  George Souris National 1988–2015
  Michael Johnsen National 2015–present

Election results[edit]

New South Wales state election, 2015: Upper Hunter[2][3]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
National Michael Johnsen 18,384 38.9 −15.6
Labor Martin Rush 15,387 32.5 +14.3
Independent Lee Watts 9,170 19.4 +19.4
Greens John Kaye 2,608 5.5 −0.1
Christian Democrats Richard Stretton 1,003 2.1 −0.3
No Land Tax Louisa Checchin 744 1.6 +1.6
Total formal votes 47,296 96.9 +0.4
Informal votes 1,506 3.1 −0.4
Turnout 48,802 91.2 +0.2
Two-party-preferred result
National Michael Johnsen 20,496 52.2 −20.8
Labor Martin Rush 18,764 47.8 +20.8
National hold Swing −20.8


  1. ^ "Upper Hunter". New South Wales Electoral Commission. Retrieved 2015-02-28.
  2. ^ State Electoral District of Upper Hunter: First Preference Votes, NSWEC.
  3. ^ State Electoral District of Upper Hunter: Distribution of Preferences, NSWEC.