Inverness (UK Parliament constituency)

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Inverness
Former County constituency
for the House of Commons
19181983
Number of members One
Replaced by Inverness, Nairn & Lochaber and Ross, Cromarty & Skye[1]
Created from Inverness-shire and Inverness Burghs

Inverness was a county constituency of the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom from 1918 until 1983. It elected one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first-past-the-post system of election.

There was also a county constituency called Inverness-shire, 1708 to 1918, and a burgh constituency called Inverness Burghs, 1708 to 1918.

Boundaries[edit]

The earlier Inverness-shire constituency covered, nominally, the county of Inverness minus the burgh of Inverness, which was a part of the Inverness Burghs constituency. By 1918, however, county boundaries were out of alignment with constituency boundaries.

In 1918, the Representation of the People Act 1918 created new constituency boundaries, taking account of new local government boundaries, and the new constituency boundaries were first used in the 1918 general election.

The new Inverness constituency included the burgh of Inverness and was one of three constituencies covering the county of Inverness and the county of Ross and Cromarty. The other two were the Ross and Cromarty constituency and the Western Isles constituency.[2]

The Inverness constituency covered the county of Inverness minus Outer Hebridean areas (the districts of Harris, North Uist and South Uist), which were covered by the Western Isles constituency. The same boundaries were used in every election from 1918 onwards.

In 1975, counties and burghs were abolished as local government areas, under the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, and from 1975 until 1983, the Inverness constituency was entirely within the Highland local government region.

For the 1983 general election, new boundaries defined three new constituencies to cover the region: Inverness, Nairn and Lochaber, Ross, Cromarty and Skye and Caithness and Sutherland. Each of the new constituencies covered a number of the districts of the region. The Caithness and Sutherland constituency carried forward the name of an older constituency.

Members of Parliament[edit]

Election Member Party Notes
1918 Thomas Brash Morison Coalition Liberal Previously MP for Inverness-shire
1922 by-election Sir Murdoch Macdonald Coalition Liberal
1922 National Liberal
1922 Liberal
1931 National Liberal
1950 Lord Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton Unionist
1954 by-election Neil McLean Unionist
1964 Russell Johnston Liberal Subsequently MP for Inverness, Nairn and Lochaber
1983 constituency abolished

Election results[edit]

Elections in the 1910s[edit]

Thomas Morison
UK General Election, 1918: Inverness[3]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal 7,991 n/a
Highland Land League George James Bruce 2,930 n/a
Majority n/a
Turnout n/a
Liberal win
  • endorsed by Coalition Government

Elections in the 1920s[edit]

Inverness by-election, 1922
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Coalition Liberal Murdoch Macdonald 8,340 51.0
Liberal Alexander Livingstone 8,024 49.0
Majority 316 2.0
Turnout 50.1
Coalition Liberal hold Swing
UK General Election, 1922: Inverness [4]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
National Liberal Murdoch Macdonald 9,796 52.7 +1.7
Liberal Alexander Livingstone 8,785 47.3 -1.7
Majority 1,011 5.4 +3.4
Turnout 18,581
National Liberal hold Swing +1.7
UK General Election, 1923: Inverness [5]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Murdoch Macdonald 10,194
Labour Andrew D. Kinloch 5,385 n/a
Majority
Turnout
Liberal hold Swing n/a
UK General Election, 1924: Inverness [6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Murdoch Macdonald 11,468 62.6
Labour T. Henderson 6,863 37.4
Majority 25.2
Turnout 18,331
Liberal hold Swing
UK General Election, 1929: Inverness [7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Murdoch Macdonald 14,042 55.3 -7.3
Labour David Norman Mackay 11,369 44.7 +7.3
Majority 2,673 10.6 -14.6
Turnout 25,411
Liberal hold Swing -7.3

Elections in the 1930s[edit]

UK General Election, 1931: Inverness [8]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal National Murdoch Macdonald 18,702 65.3
Labour David Norman Mackay 5,941 20.7
National (Scotland) John MacCormick 4,016 14.0
Majority 12,761 44.5
Turnout 28,659 61.9
Liberal National gain from Liberal Swing
UK General Election, 1935: Inverness [9]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal National Murdoch Macdonald 14,985 56.4
Labour Hugh Fraser 7,297 27.5
SNP John MacCormick 4,273 16.1
Majority 7,688 29.0
Turnout 26,555 57.8
Liberal National hold Swing

Elections in the 1940s[edit]

UK General Election, 1945: Inverness[10]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Independent Liberal Murdoch Macdonald 12,090 43.26
Labour Neil George Maclean 9,655 34.55
Liberal John MacCormick 6,200 22.19 n/a
Majority 2,435 8.71
Turnout 27,945 59.40
Independent Liberal gain from Liberal National Swing

Elections in the 1950s[edit]

General Election 1950: Inverness[11][12]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton 16,056 45.47 N/A
Labour Desmond Nethersole-Thompson 11,236 31.82 −2.73
Liberal John Bannerman 8,023 22.72 +0.53
Majority 4,820 13.65 +4.94
Turnout 35,315 68.52 +9.12
Unionist gain from Liberal National Swing
General Election 1951: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton 22,497 64.54 +19.07
Labour Thomas Alexander MacNair 12,361 35.46 +3.64
Majority 10,136 29.08 +15.43
Turnout 34,858 69.30 +0.78
Unionist hold Swing +21.37
Inverness by-election, 1954
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist Neil McLean 10,329 41.4 -23.1
Liberal John Bannerman 8,998 36.0 N/A
Labour William Paterson 5,642 22.6 -12.9
Majority 1,331 5.4 -23.7
Turnout 49.2
Unionist hold Swing
General Election 1955: Inverness[11][13]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist Neil McLean 14,352 41.5 −23.1
Liberal John Bannerman 13,386 38.7 N/A
Labour Desmond Nethersole-Thompson 6,891 19.9 −15.6
Majority 966 2.8 −26.3
Turnout 34,629 67.49 −1.8
Unionist hold Swing −9.1
General Election 1959: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Unionist Neil McLean 15,728 44.4 +2.9
Liberal John Bannerman 11,653 32.9 −5.8
Labour Ian John Forgan Coulter 8,073 22.77 +2.9
Majority 4,075 11.49 +8.70
Turnout 35,454 71.56 +4.07
Unionist hold Swing +5.75

Elections in the 1960s[edit]

General Election 1964: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Russell Johnston 14,235 39.8 +7.0
Unionist Neil McLean 12,099 33.9 −10.5
Labour Allan Campbell McLean 9,402 26.3 +3.5
Majority 2,136 6.0 −5.5
Turnout 35,736 71.4 −0.2
Liberal gain from Unionist Swing
General Election 1966: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Russell Johnston 14,356 39.45 −0.4
Conservative David Anthony Wathen 11,961 32.87 −1.0
Labour Allan Campbell McLean 10,069 27.7 +1.4
Majority 2,395 6.6 +0.6
Turnout 36,386 72.1 +0.7
Liberal hold Swing

Elections in the 1970s[edit]

General Election 1970: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Russell Johnston 15,052 38.4 −1.1
Conservative David Anthony Wathen 12,378 31.54 −1.4
Labour Donald Macauley 9,038 23.03 −4.6
SNP Athole Christina Cameron 2,781 7.1 N/A
Majority 2,674 6.8 +0.2
Turnout 39,248 72.3 +0.2
Liberal hold Swing
General Election February 1974: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Russell Johnston 16,903 38.7 +0.4
Conservative R. E. Henderson 11,680 26.8 −4.8
Labour D. J. Cameron 7,816 17.9 −5.1
SNP Rob Gibson 7,258 16.6 +9.5
Majority 5,223 12.0 +5.2
Turnout 43,657 76.1 +3.8
Liberal hold Swing
General Election October 1974: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Russell Johnston 13,128 32.4 −6.3
SNP Donald Barr 11,994 29.6 +13.0
Conservative R. E. Henderson 8,922 22.0 −4.7
Labour J.W.L. Cumming 6,332 15.6 −2.3
Fine Gael U. Bell 155 0.4 N/A
Majority 1,134 2.8 −9.2
Turnout 40,531 70.5 −5.6
Liberal hold Swing
General Election 1979: Inverness
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Russell Johnston 15,716 33.7 +1.4
Conservative Richard Hunter Gordon 11,559 24.8 +2.8
SNP Donald Barr 9,603 20.6 −9.0
Labour Brian Wilson 9,586 20.6 +5.0
Fine Gael U. Bell 112 0.2 −0.1
Majority 4,157 8.9 +6.1
Turnout 46,576 74.4 −4.0
Liberal hold Swing

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "'Inverness', Feb 1974 - May 1983". ElectionWeb Project. Cognitive Computing Limited. Retrieved 23 March 2016. 
  2. ^ Boundaries of Parliamentary Constituencies 1885-1972 (ISBN 0-900178-09-4), F. W. S. Craig 1972
  3. ^ Whitaker's Almanack, 1920
  4. ^ The Times, 20 November 1922
  5. ^ The Times, 11 December 1923
  6. ^ Oliver & Boyd's Edinburgh Almanac, 1927
  7. ^ The Times, 3 June 1929
  8. ^ Whitaker's Almanack, 1934
  9. ^ Whitaker's Almanack, 1939
  10. ^ Craig, F.W.S., ed. (1969). British parliamentary election results 1918-1949. Glasgow: Political Reference Publications. p. 419. ISBN 0-900178-01-9. 
  11. ^ a b Pennie, Ian D. (October 1989). "Obituaries: Desmond Nethersole-Thompson (1908-1989)". Ibis. 131 (4): 610–611. doi:10.1111/j.1474-919X.1989.tb04797.x. Retrieved 4 March 2017. 
  12. ^ The Times' Guide to the House of Commons. 1950. 
  13. ^ The Times' Guide to the House of Commons. 1955.