Newark by-election, 2014

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Newark by-election

← 2010 5 June 2015 →

Newark constituency

  First party Second party Third party
  Official portrait of Robert Jenrick crop 2.jpg Helmer, Roger-9461.jpg No image.svg
Candidate Robert Jenrick Roger Helmer Michael Payne
Party Conservative UKIP Labour
Popular vote 17,431 10,028 6,842
Percentage 45.0% 25.9% 17.7%
Swing Decrease8.9% Increase22.1% Decrease4.7%

Map showing the Newark Parliamentary constituency within the English county of Nottinghamshire.

MP before election

Patrick Mercer

Subsequent MP

Robert Jenrick

The Newark by-election was a by-election in the Newark constituency of the British House of Commons, which was held on 5 June 2014,[1][2] following the resignation of Patrick Mercer.[3] Conservative Robert Jenrick won the seat with a majority of 7,403.


Mercer resigned the Conservative Party whip on 31 May 2013 after an investigation by the BBC's Panorama programme regarding allegations of paid lobbying without registering the interest.[4] He was paid £4,000 for asking questions in Parliament, and the Panorama team considered that he asked five parliamentary questions, but declared only £2,000 of the £4,000.[5] As a consequence, he said at the time that he would not stand in the 2015 general election.[6]

On 29 April, after being told that the Committee on Standards would recommend that he be suspended from the House of Commons for six months, Mercer announced that he would resign his seat: he told journalists on College Green that he was standing down from "God's county of Nottinghamshire".[3][7] Mercer was appointed Steward and Bailiff of the Three Chiltern Hundreds on 30 April 2014, a mechanism by which MPs resign.[8]

The writ was moved on 1 May 2014 for the by-election to be held on 5 June.[1][9]


The nominations closed at 4pm on Tuesday 13 May with 11 candidates being nominated.[10]

The local Conservative Party had already selected Robert Jenrick to fight the seat.[11] Jenrick trained as a solicitor and is a director of Christie's auction house. He is married with two children.

Labour selected 27-year-old councillor Michael Payne, a former students' union president[12] and current deputy leader of Gedling Borough Council.[13]

The Liberal Democrats chose David Watts, leader of Broxtowe Borough Council.[13]

Nigel Farage was immediately interviewed on the evening of 29 April and said he was "tempted" to stand, but the next morning he ruled himself out.[14] UKIP instead announced that outspoken former Conservative and current UKIP MEP for the East Midlands Roger Helmer[15][16] would stand in the by-election.[17]

The Bus Pass Elvis Party leader and perennial election candidate, David Bishop, announced on 6 May that he would stand in the by-election after taking fourth place ahead of the Liberal Democrats in a recent local authority by-election in Clifton North ward, Nottingham.[18]


By-Election 2014: Newark[19][20]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Robert Jenrick 17,431 45.0 -8.9
UKIP Roger Helmer 10,028 25.9 +22.1
Labour Michael Payne 6,842 17.7 -4.7
Independent Paul Baggaley 1,891 4.9 N/A
Green David Kirwan 1,057 2.7 N/A
Liberal Democrat David Watts 1,004 2.6 -17.4
Monster Raving Loony Nick The Flying Brick 168 0.4 N/A
Independent Andy Hayes 117 0.3 N/A
Bus-Pass Elvis David Bishop 87 0.2 N/A
Common Good Dick Rodgers 64 0.2 N/A
Patriotic Socialist Party Lee Woods 18 0.0 N/A
Majority 7,403 19.1 -12.4
Turnout 38,707 52.79 -19.61
Conservative hold Swing -15.5

The Conservatives retained the seat with a majority of over 7,000 which was described by the BBC as 'a relatively comfortable victory'.[21] While UKIP's performance decreased the Conservative majority the BBC's Alex Forsyth said this was 'not as much as Mr Farage had hoped - or predicted'.[21] Christopher Hope, writing in The Telegraph, argued that 'the scale of the victory is a vindication for the Tory high command which mounted a huge effort to win the seat' and claimed that David Cameron 'had halted the momentum of Ukip'.[22] George Osborne hailed his party's victory and noted that it was the first time the Conservative's had held a seat at a by-election while in government for 25 years.[21] However, both Nigel Farage and Labour's Chris Bryant suggested that the Conservative performance was not particularly impressive.[21] It was suggested by Owen Jones in The Guardian that 'Labour and Lib Dem voters clearly voted tactically to keep Ukip out'.[23] The poor performance for the Liberal Democrats was described by the BBC as one of 'worst performances in a post-war English by-election' for the party or its predecessors,[21] and by The Telegraph as 'a disaster' for the party.[22]


Polling organisation/client Sample size Con Lab LD UKIP Others Lead
5 Jun 2014 Newark by-election Result 38,707 45.0% 17.7% 3% 25.9% 8% 19% over UKIP
2–3 Jun Survation 678 42% 22% 4% 27% 5% 15% over UKIP
27 May–1 Jun Lord Ashcroft 1,000 42% 20% 6% 27% 5% 15% over UKIP
27–28 May Survation/The Sun 606 36% 27% 5% 28% 5% 8% over UKIP
6 May 2010 2010 Results (Newark only) 51,228 53.9% 22.3% 20.0% 3.8% - 31.5% over Lab

Previous result[edit]

General Election 2010: Newark[24]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Patrick Mercer 27,590 53.9 +3.4
Labour Ian Campbell 11,438 22.3 −6.0
Liberal Democrat Pauline Jenkins 10,246 20.0 +1.6
UKIP Tom Irvine 1,954 3.8 +1.0
Majority 16,152 31.5
Turnout 51,228 71.4 +8.0
Conservative hold Swing +4.7

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Britton, Alex (1 May 2014). "Newark by-election to take place on June 5". Nottingham Post. Retrieved 1 May 2014. 
  2. ^ Newark and Sherwood District Council: Newark Parliamentary by-election 2014. Retrieved 7 May 2014
  3. ^ a b "Former Tory MP Mercer resigns after Commons suspension". BBC News. BBC. 29 April 2014. Retrieved 29 April 2014. 
  4. ^ "Mercer aftermath: Will PM introduce new lobbying laws?". BBC News. BBC. 2 June 2013. Retrieved 7 August 2013. 
  5. ^ Nicholas Watt "MP Patrick Mercer resigns Commons seat in wake of lobbying allegations",, 29 April 2014
  6. ^ "Tory MP Patrick Mercer Quits The Party". Sky News. BSkyB. Retrieved 31 May 2013. 
  7. ^ Nicholas Watt, "Farage considering standing in Newark", The Guardian website, 30 April 2014
  8. ^ UK Parliament website, "Patrick Mercer appointed to the Three Hundreds of Chiltern", 30 April 2014
  9. ^ "Patrick Mercer 'deliberately evaded' MPs' rules, watchdog finds", BBC News, 1 May 2014
  11. ^ Robert Jenrick, Candidate for Newark, Conservative Party website.
  12. ^ "UKIP's Nigel Farage says he will not stand in Newark poll". BBC News. BBC. 30 April 2014. Retrieved 30 April 2014. 
  13. ^ a b "Newark by-election: PM visits British Sugar". Newark Advertiser. 9 May 2014. Retrieved 13 May 2014. 
  14. ^ "Nigel Farage: Newark seat 'seriously tempting'", BBC News, 30 April 2014
    - Norman Smith, "A pint with Nigel Farage as he mulled big decision", BBC News, 30 April 2014
  15. ^ Tom Payne, "Ukip MEP Roger Helmer: People should be able to dislike homosexuality like they do different types of tea", The Independent, 29 April 2014
    - Adam Withnall, "Roger Helmer MEP at centre of homophobia row unveiled as Ukip candidate for Newark by-election", The Independent, 6 May 2014
  16. ^ Roger Helmer, underage girls and consent Liberal England
  17. ^ Rowena Mason and agencies, "Ukip selects candidate who argued date rape victims should take responsibility", The Guardian, 7 May 2014, p5
  18. ^ Alex Britton, "Patrick Mercer 'deliberately evaded' MPs' rules, watchdog finds", Nottingham Post, 6 May 2014
  19. ^ "Newark by-election candidate names confirmed". BBC News. 13 May 2014. 
  20. ^ "Newark By-Election results". Newark and Sherwood District Council. 5 June 2014. 
  21. ^ a b c d e "Conservatives see off UKIP challenge to win Newark by-election". 6 June 2014. Retrieved 21 May 2018. 
  22. ^ a b Hope, Christopher (6 June 2014). "Conservatives halt the march of Ukip as they win Newark by-election". The Telegraph. Retrieved 22 May 2018. 
  23. ^ Jones, Owen (6 June 2014). "Now Ukip is feeling the effect of protest vote politics". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 May 2018. 
  24. ^ "Newark". YourNextMP. Archived from the original on 1 April 2012. Retrieved 6 April 2010.