Kensington (UK Parliament constituency)

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Kensington
Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of Kensington in Greater London.
County Greater London
Electorate 62,784 (December 2010)[1]
Current constituency
Created 2010
Member of parliament Emma Dent Coad (Labour)
Created from Kensington and Chelsea
19741997
Replaced by Kensington and Chelsea
Created from Kensington North & Kensington South
Overlaps
European Parliament constituency London

Kensington is a constituency[n 1] in Greater London that was created in 2010. It is represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2017 by Emma Dent Coad, of the Labour Party.

In the 2017 general election, the Labour candidate, Emma Dent Coad, won the seat from the Conservative candidate, Victoria Borwick, by a margin of 20 votes,[n 2] marking the first time ever that the seat had been represented by Labour.[2]

An earlier version of the seat existed between the elections of 1974 and 1997.

Boundaries[edit]

The constituency formed for the 2010 election comprises the northern and central parts of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea in and around Kensington and has electoral wards:

From 1974 to 1983 the constituency comprised electoral wards:

  • Golborne, Holland, Norland, Pembridge, Queen's Gate and St Charles.

From 1983 to 1997 the constituency comprised electoral wards:

  • Avondale, Campden, Colville, Golborne, Holland, Kelfield, Norland, Pembridge, Queen's Gate and St Charles.[3]

History[edit]

First creation[edit]

The first incarnation of a Kensington constituency in Westminster was for the February 1974 general election,derived from the fairly safe Labour seat of Kensington North, and the overwhelmingly Conservative Kensington South; this was abolished for the 1997 general election. The seat was mostly replaced by Regent's Park and Kensington North which was, until its 2010 abolition, represented by Labour MPs, specifically, won three times during the Blair Ministry, and partially replaced by Kensington and Chelsea which was held by Malcolm Rifkind (Conservative) until his resignation at the 2015 general election.

Summary of results (first creation)

The old seat returned Conservative MPs from 1974 up to and including its last general election in 1992. At its sole by-election in 1988 the seat was won by its smallest majority, a highly marginal 3.4% – a by-election which saw a majority turnout and a Labour splinter party candidate, for the Social Democratic Party (UK, 1988) achieve fourth place attracting 5% of the vote yet standing in the year of the formal amalgamation of the main SDP splinter group with the Liberal Party to form the Liberal Democrats who stood as the Social and Liberal Democrats and seven years after the formation of the official SDP-Liberal Alliance.

Second creation[edit]

The constituency was recreated by adopting the Fifth Periodic Review of Westminster constituencies of the Boundary Commission at the 2010 general election, combining elements of the two constituencies.

Summary of results (second creation)

The 2015 result was a narrower result than 2010 and gave the seat the 126th most marginal majority of the Conservative Party's 331 seats by percentage of majority.[4] The runner-up party remained the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats' share of the vote fell by 13.9% to 5.6% of votes cast.

In the June 2017 election, three recounts occurred, the first two producing extremely close results with the latter producing a Labour majority of only 20+ votes. After the two recounts due to fatigue among the staff the counting was suspended to allow them to "rest and recuperate". The third recount gave Labour a majority of 20, the first time the constituency had become a Labour seat since its creation,[5] and makes it the Labour Party's most vulnerable seat.[6]

Constituency profile[edit]

Kensington is mostly residential — housing varies between the expensive apartments with manicured gardens squares or terraces of South Kensington, that has some of the most exclusive real estate in the world and, by contrast, North Kensington and Ladbroke Grove have, for the most part, dense social housing, tower blocks in output areas with high rankings in the 2000-compiled Index of Multiple Deprivation.[7] Kensington High Street is an upmarket shopping hub, Kensington Palace is the residence of members of the Royal Family, and Kensington Palace Gardens is the site of many embassies and a few private residences of very affluent homeowners. South Kensington also borders Hyde Park and includes the Science Museum, the Natural History Museum and the Victoria and Albert.

Earls Court, Brompton, Holland Park and Notting Hill have their own characters. Earls Court is less affluent than its neighbours. While it is undergoing rapid gentrification and includes its own areas for the super-rich, there are still old hotels and bedsits around the site of the former Earls Court Exhibition Centre, which extends into the marginal Hammersmith seat. Notting Hill is an affluent, highly cosmopolitan area which hosts the Notting Hill Carnival, led by the area's African-Caribbean community. It fell on hard times in the twentieth century, being associated with low-rent flats and multiple-occupancy homes, but has since been gentrified. Old Victorian private houses in these areas can be as high in price as those in Fulham.[8]

Members of Parliament[edit]

Election Member[9] Party
Feb 1974 Sir Brandon Rhys-Williams Conservative
1988(b) Dudley Fishburn Conservative
1997 constituency abolished: see Kensington and Chelsea
2010 Sir Malcolm Rifkind Conservative
2015 Victoria Borwick Conservative
2017 Emma Dent Coad Labour

Election results[edit]

Elections in the 2010s[edit]

Results for all constituencies except Kensington were reported the morning after 8 June 2017 general election. The result was extremely close in Kensington, which had been considered a safe Conservative seat. After three counts on 8 and 9 June which returned an apparent Labour majority of 38 to 50, counting was suspended due to fatigue;[11]ultimately the result was announced late on 9 June.

General Election 2017: Kensington[10]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Emma Dent Coad 16,333 42.2 Increase 11.1
Conservative Victoria Borwick 16,313 42.2 Decrease 10.1
Liberal Democrat Annabel Mullin 4,724 12.2 Increase 6.6
Green Jennifer Nadel 767 2.0 Decrease 3.1
Independent James Torrance 393 1.0 Increase 1.0
Independent Peter Marshall 98 0.3 Increase 0.3
Alliance for Green Socialism John Lloyd 49 0.1 Decrease 0.2
Majority 20 0.05 N/A
Turnout 38,677 63.8 Increase 6.8
Labour gain from Conservative Swing Increase 10.6
General Election 2015: Kensington[12][13]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Victoria Borwick[14] 18,199 52.3 +2.2
Labour Rod Abouharb 10,838 31.1 +5.6
Liberal Democrat Robin McGhee 1,962 5.6 −13.9
Green Robina Rose 1,765 5.1 +2.9
UKIP Jack Bovill[15] 1,557 4.5 +2.3
CISTA Tony Auguste 211 0.6 +0.6
Animal Welfare Andrew Knight 158 0.5 +0.5
Alliance for Green Socialism Toby Abse 115 0.3 −0.2
New Independent Centralists Roland Courtenay 23 0.1 +0.1
Majority 7,361 21.1 −3.4
Turnout 34,828 57.0 +3.7
Conservative hold Swing −1.7
General Election 2010: Kensington[16]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Malcolm Rifkind 17,595 50.1 +6.2
Labour Sam Gurney 8,979 25.5 −4.1
Liberal Democrat Robin Meltzer 6,872 19.6 −0.6
UKIP Caroline Pearson[17] 754 2.1 +1.0
Green Melan Ebrahimi-Fardouée 753 2.1 −2.4
Alliance for Green Socialism Eddie Adams 197 0.6 +0.2
Majority 8,616 24.5
Turnout 35,150 53.3 +1.5
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

General Election 1992: Kensington[18]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Dudley Fishburn 15,540 50.3 +2.8
Labour Patricia Holmes 11,992 38.8 +5.6
Liberal Democrat Christopher Shirley 2,770 9.0 −8.3
Green Ajay Burlingham-Johnson 415 1.3 −1.4
Natural Law Anthony W. Hardy 90 0.3 N/A
Anti-Federalist League Anne Bulloch 71 0.2 N/A
Majority 3,548 11.5
Turnout 30,878 73.3
Conservative hold Swing −1.4

Elections in the 1980s[edit]

Kensington by-election, 1988
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Dudley Fishburn 9,829 41.59 −5.9
Labour Patricia Holmes 9,014 38.14 +4.9
Social and Liberal Democrats William Goodhart 2,546 10.77 −6.5
Social Democratic John Martin 1,190 5.04 N/A
Green Phylip Hobson 572 2.42 +0.7
Rainbow Alliance – Payne & Pleasure Cynthia Payne 193 0.82 N/A
Monster Raving Loony Screaming Lord Sutch 61 0.26 N/A
London Class War Candidate John Duignan 60 0.25 N/A
Anti Left-Wing Fascist Brian Goodier 31 0.13 N/A
Free Trade Liberal – Europe Out! Thomas McDermott 31 0.13 N/A
Fair Wealth & Health Roy Edey 30 0.13 N/A
Leveller Party William Scola 27 0.11 N/A
Anti-Yuppie John Crowley 24 0.10 N/A
Peace – Stop ITN Manipulation John Connell 20 0.08 N/A
Independent Janata Party Kailash Trivedi 5 0.02 N/A
Majority 815 3.4 −10.9
Turnout 23,633 51.6 −13.1
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1987: Kensington[19]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Brandon Rhys-Williams 14,818 47.5 +1.5
Labour Benjamin Bousquet 10,371 33.3 +3.8
Social Democratic William Goodhart 5,379 17.2 −4.9
Green Roger Shorter 528 1.7 −0.4
Humanist Lana Carrick 65 0.2 N/A
Public Independent Plaintiff Party Muriel Hughes 30 0.1 N/A
Majority 4,447 14.26
Turnout 31,191 64.7
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1983: Kensington[20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Brandon Rhys-Williams 14,274 46.0
Labour Benjamin Bousquet 9,173 29.5
Social Democratic William Goodhart 6,873 22.1
Ecology Jonathon Porritt 649 2.1
Independent T.F. Knight 86 0.3
Majority 5,101 16.4
Turnout 31,055 62.3
Conservative hold Swing

Elections in the 1970s[edit]

General Election 1979: Kensington
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Brandon Rhys-Williams 17,361 51.3
Labour P Holmes 11,898 35.2
Liberal B Vincent-Emery 3,537 10.5
Ecology Nicholas Albery[21] 698 2.06
National Front C Hopewell 356 1.05
Majority 5,463 16.14
Turnout 64.60
Conservative hold Swing
General Election October 1974: Kensington
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Brandon Rhys-Williams 15,562 45.2 −0.9
Labour John Tilley 13,645 39.6 +6.4
Liberal R. Cohen 5,236 15.2 −5.5
Majority 1,917 5.6
Turnout 34,443 56.4 −9.4
Conservative hold Swing
General Election February 1974: Kensington
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Brandon Rhys-Williams 18,425 46.1 N/A
Labour John Tilley 13,293 33.2 N/A
Liberal Robert LeFever[22] 8,270 20.7 N/A
Majority 5,132 12.8 N/A
Turnout 39,988 65.8 N/A
Conservative win (new seat)

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

Notes
  1. ^ A borough constituency (for the purposes of election expenses and type of returning officer)
  2. ^ As with all constituencies, the constituency elects one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election at least every five years.
  3. ^ The remaining electoral wards in the Royal Borough involved: Cremorne, Hans Town, Redcliffe, Royal Hospital, and Stanley were lost to the cross-borough Chelsea and Fulham.
References
  1. ^ "Electorate Figures – Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Archived from the original on 6 November 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  2. ^ "Labour wins Kensington seat for first time ever". The Independent. 9 June 2017. Retrieved 9 June 2017. 
  3. ^ Crewe, Ivor (1983). British Parliament Constituencies – a statistical compendium. faber and faber. ISBN 0-571-13236-7. 
  4. ^ List of Conservative MPs elected in 2015 by % majority UK Political.info. Retrieved 29 January 2017
  5. ^ "The end of the election has been delayed". 9 June 2017. 
  6. ^ "Labour Target Seats 2022". Election Polling. Retrieved 14 June 2017. 
  7. ^ "Local statistics – Office for National Statistics". neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk.  line feed character in |title= at position 17 (help)
  8. ^ "Area and Property Guide for W14". mouseprice.com. 
  9. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "K" (part 1)
  10. ^ "Kensington parliamentary constituency". BBC News. 
  11. ^ Tim Donovan, BBC Political Editor (9 June 2017). "Kensington parliamentary constituency – Election 2017". BBC News. Retrieved 9 June 2017. 
  12. ^ "Election Data 2015". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 17 October 2015. Retrieved 17 October 2015. 
  13. ^ "General Election May 2015 – Kensington constituency". rbkc.gov.uk. 
  14. ^ Rawlinson, Kevin (13 March 2015). "Victoria Borwick selected as Conservative candidate for Kensington" – via The Guardian. 
  15. ^ "Jack Bovill for Hammersmith in the 2017 General Election". Who Can I Vote For? by Democracy Club. 
  16. ^ "Election Data 2010". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2015. 
  17. ^ Move over Sarah and SamCam ... step up Lady Caroline of UKIP Daily Mail, 14 April 2010
  18. ^ "Election Data 1992". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015. 
  19. ^ "Election Data 1987". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015. 
  20. ^ "Election Data 1983". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015. 
  21. ^ "Obituary: Nicholas Albery". The Daily Telegraph. 13 June 2001. Retrieved 9 June 2014. 
  22. ^ "Election leaflet for Robert Lefever, Liberal candidate for Kensington, February 1974 general election". University of Warwick. Retrieved 9 June 2014. 

Coordinates: 51°30′18″N 0°12′00″W / 51.505°N 0.20°W / 51.505; -0.20