Rochester and Strood (UK Parliament constituency)
|Rochester and Strood|
for the House of Commons
|Electorate||75,001 (December 2010)|
|Major settlements||Rochester, Strood, Chatham (part)|
|Member of Parliament||Kelly Tolhurst (Conservative)|
|Number of members||One|
Rochester and Strood is a constituency[n 1] represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2015 by Kelly Tolhurst, a Conservative. Until January 2021 she was a minister in the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government. [n 2]
Rochester and Strood constituency is situated alongside the River Medway, which joins the Thames Estuary, becoming a wide salty and sea-like waterway at its northern river mouth. It spans the ancient cathedral city of Rochester, the older part of Chatham, and the smaller town of Strood to the west of the river, with a more rural area to the north of Strood on the Hoo Peninsula.
Earnings in the constituency are close to the national average income, low unemployment compared to the national average (3.5% at the end of 2012) and can be considered aside from significant sources of employment, professions and trades in Kent as part of the London Commuter Belt. Levels of reliance on social housing are similar to most of the region in this seat.
The Rochester constituency has ancient origins dating to the 16th century, but it has seen many changes in the 20th century. From 1885 to 1918 the wider area was split between Chatham, Gillingham and the "old", rural, Medway constituency. The Chatham seat joined Rochester to form Rochester and Chatham in 1950, which formed the core of Medway in 1983.
When the boroughs of Rochester upon Medway and Gillingham merged in 1998 to form, then confusingly, a unitary authority named Medway, the parliamentary constituency of Medway only covered part of the new borough, so in the boundary changes before the 2010 election the seat was renamed to more accurately reflect the area of Rochester and Strood which it now covers.
The seat of Rochester and Chatham, followed by Medway and then Rochester and Strood, had elected members of the party which won the popular vote in the UK at every election since 1959. This had meant that from 1959 to 2014 the area had always been represented by a member of the governing party, apart from the brief period between the February and October elections in 1974 (since Labour formed a minority government in February despite the Conservatives winning the popular vote).
In 2014, the sitting Conservative MP Mark Reckless defected to the United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP), becoming the second MP in a matter of weeks to do so. Reckless resigned his seat, triggering a by-election in which he stood as the UKIP candidate. He won the by-election by just under 3,000 votes and became UKIP's second MP after Douglas Carswell. At the 2015 general election, Reckless was defeated by Conservative candidate Kelly Tolhurst, who had also fought the by-election. Tolhurst secured a majority of over 7,000 votes, meaning the Rochester area once again had an MP on the government benches.
Members of Parliament
Elections in the 2010s
|Liberal Democrats||Graham Colley||3,717||7.2||5.0|
|Liberal Democrats||Bart Ricketts||1,189||2.2||0.2|
|Liberal Democrats||Prue Bray||1,251||2.4||13.9|
|Liberal Democrats||Geoff Juby||349||0.9||15.4|
|Monster Raving Loony||Hairy Knorm Davidson||151||0.4||New|
|People Before Profit||Nick Long||69||0.2||New|
|Britain First||Jayda Fransen||56||0.1||New|
|Patriotic Socialist Party||Dave Osborn||33||0.1||New|
|UKIP gain from Conservative||Swing||N/A|
|Liberal Democrats||Geoff Juby||7,800||16.3|
|English Democrat||Ron Sands||2,182||4.5|
|Conservative gain from Labour||Swing|
Notes and references
- "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.
- The Guardian, report of resignation, published 16 January 2021
- "Local statistics - Office for National Statistics". www.ons.gov.uk.
- "2011 census interactive maps". Archived from the original on 29 January 2016.
- Unemployment claimants by constituency The Guardian
- "Lily Madigan: I want to be Labour's first transgender MP". BBC Newsbeat. 1 December 2017. Retrieved 1 December 2017.
- Diavolo, Lucy (5 November 2018). "21 Under 21: Lily Madigan's Political Moxie Is Fueled by Bigots' Attention". Teen Vogue. Retrieved 14 November 2018.
- 2010 post-revision map non-metropolitan areas and unitary authorities of England
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "R" (part 2)
- "Rochester & Strood Parliamentary constituency". BBC News. BBC. Retrieved 26 November 2019.
- "Election Data 2015". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 17 October 2015. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- "By-election date set after MP Mark Reckless defects to Ukip". Telegraph.co.uk. 14 October 2014. Retrieved 27 October 2014.
- "UKIP's Reckless wins Rochester seat". BBC News. BBC. Retrieved 21 November 2014.
- "Election Data 2010". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- "Rochester & Strood". BBC News. 7 May 2010.