United Kingdom general election records

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This is an annotated list of notable records from United Kingdom general elections from 1945 onwards (with certain exceptions).


This article limits itself to records for 1945 and onwards. Prior to 1945, electoral competition in the United Kingdom exhibited features which make meaningful comparisons with modern results difficult.

Among the most significant[citation needed][original research?] were:

  • Frequent interventions and withdrawals of parties in different seats.
  • Frequent coalitions between parties, splits within parties and floor-crossing by members.
  • Uncontested elections and truces between parties, in particular during both world wars.
  • Generally more significant competition from independent candidates and minor parties.
  • Multi-member seats and university seats.
  • Higher frequency of general elections, although parliaments were extended during both world wars.
  • Generally higher turnouts.
  • Generally higher variation in size of constituency electorates.

Since 1945, the evolution of a stable 3-party system has tended to negate each of the above features so that, broadly speaking, elections are more comparable.

In Northern Ireland, as ever, the pattern of party competition is completely different from that in Great Britain and comparisons remain problematic.

Hence, unless otherwise stated records are based on results since the 1945 general election, and earlier exceptional results are listed separately.


For comparison purposes the following definitions have been adopted.

  • Gain – victory by a party which was not victorious at the immediate previous election.
  • Loss – defeat of a party which was victorious at the immediate previous election.
  • Hold – victory by a party which was victorious at the immediate previous election.
  • Win – victory by a party. Ambiguous term that could mean either a gain or a hold.
  • Incumbent – the party which held the seat at the immediate previous election, irrespective of any intervening change of candidate or candidate's change of party.
  • Third party – In England, since 1922, the "third party" has been the Liberal party through its Alliance with the SDP and their successors up to the present day Liberal Democrats. Additionally, in Scotland and Wales the Scottish National Party and Plaid Cymru are also considered to be third parties. Prior to 1922, the third party was the Labour party.
  • Minor party – parties smaller than the third party
  • Uncontested – an election where only one candidate is put forward. No votes are actually cast and the candidate is by default the victor.
  • Notional – boundary changes occur about every 10–15 years. Invariably the political composition of many seats is changed as a result, sometimes decisively. Professors Colin Rallings and Michael Thrasher have compiled notional results for the last few sets of boundary changes, predicting what the result would have been at the previous election under the new boundaries. While accurate overall, the results in a few seats indicate that they may have been mistaken.

Numerical records[edit]

For more information about what is meant by the term "swing", see Swing (politics)

Largest swings[edit]

National swings[edit]

From Conservative to Labour[edit]

From Labour to Conservative[edit]

  • Bassetlaw, 2019 – 18.4% (Conservative gain)

From Labour to Liberal Democrat[edit]

From Labour to SNP[edit]

From Liberal Democrat to Labour[edit]

From Liberal Democrat to SNP[edit]

From SNP to Conservative[edit]

Largest fall in percentage share of vote[edit]

A party's share of the vote at a general election is not always matched at subsequent general elections, but given the five-year maximum term of a Parliament since 1911, reductions of 10% or more (on the national level) or around 30% or more (in individual constituencies) are unusual.



Decrease Party Constituency Election
65.1 Irish Parliamentary West Mayo 1918
60.6 Ind. Labour Party Glasgow Bridgeton 1950
53.1 UUP North Down 1979
45.8 Labour Merthyr Tydfil 1970
45.7 Labour Blyth 1974 Feb
41.5 UUP North Antrim 1970
39.8 UUP Belfast North 2001
39.7 Labour Blaenau Gwent 2005
37.4 Ind. Labour Party Merthyr 1935
36.8 UKIP Clacton 2017
35.8 Liberal Democrats Brent Central 2015[3]
35.0 UUP Lagan Valley 2005
34.7 Respect Bradford West 2015
34.7 Labour Glasgow North East 2015[3]
33.0 Ind. Labour Party Glasgow Shettleston 1950
32.7 Labour Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill 2015[3]
31.7 Labour Glenrothes 2015[3]
31.6 Sinn Féin Fermanagh and South Tyrone 1959
31.2 Labour Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath 2015[3]
31.2 Liberal Democrats Sheffield Central 2015[3]
31.1 Liberal Democrats Dunfermline and West Fife 2015[3]
30.5 Liberal Democrats Hereford and South Herefordshire 2015[3]
30.5 Democratic Labour Lincoln 1979
30.3 Liberal Democrats Edinburgh South 2015[3]
30.0 UUP North Down 2010
30.0 Labour West Dunbartonshire 2015[3]
29.2 Liberal Democrats Bristol West 2015[4]

Other parties[edit]

The Conservative, Scottish National, and Democratic Unionist parties have never lost a 30% or larger percentage share of the vote in a single constituency.

Decrease Party Constituency Election
27.0 NI Conservatives North Down 1997
26.0 SNP Western Isles 1987
25.3 DUP Belfast West 1979

Largest increase in percentage share of vote[edit]

These records detail the change in the share of the vote by parties when compared to the same constituency in the previous general election. In some cases, such as Brent East in 2005 for the Liberal Democrats, the figures should be framed by the context of a by-election in that constituency between the two elections.

Increase Party Constituency Election
74.1 Labour Glasgow Gorbals 1945
43.9 SNP Glasgow North East 2015[3]
43.8 Liberal Dundee West 1951
41.3 DUP Lagan Valley 2005
41.2 SNP Glasgow North 2015[3]
40.8 SNP Glasgow South West 2015[3]
39.8 SNP Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill 2015[3]
39.6 SNP Dunfermline and West Fife 2015[3]
39.3 SNP Glasgow North West 2015[3]
38.9 SNP West Dunbartonshire 2015[3]
38.3 SNP Motherwell and Wishaw 2015[3]
38.2 SNP Glenrothes 2015[3]
37.9 SNP Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath 2015[3]
37.6 SNP Inverclyde 2015
36.9 Liberal Democrats Brent East 2005
36.5 SNP Rutherglen and Hamilton West 2015
36.1 SNP Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East 2015
36.1 Labour Glasgow Shettleston 1950
35.0 SNP Glasgow Central 2015
34.7 SNP Glasgow South 2015
34.2 SNP Aberdeen North 2015
34.1 SNP Central Ayrshire 2015
33.0 SNP Dundee West 2015
33.0 SNP Ross, Skye and Lochaber 2015
32.8 SNP Paisley and Renfrewshire South 2015
32.6 SNP East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow 2015
32.2 SNP Glasgow East 2015
31.7 SNP East Renfrewshire 2015
31.7 SNP Paisley and Renfrewshire North 2015
31.6 UUP Fermanagh and South Tyrone 1959
31.4 SNP Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey 2015
31.3 SNP Edinburgh North and Leith 2015
31.0 SNP Livingston 2015
30.8 SNP Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock 2015
30.8 SNP Edinburgh South West 2015
30.6 SNP Dundee East 1974 Feb
30.4 SNP Airdrie and Shotts 2015
30.3 Labour Bristol West 2017
30.0 SNP Midlothian 2015

Other parties[edit]

Increase Party Constituency Election
29.6 UKIP Heywood and Middleton 2015
29.0 Conservative Gordon 2017
24.2 Unity Fermanagh and South Tyrone 1970
23.7 Republican Labour Belfast West 1966
23.0 Green Bristol West 2015

Largest winning share of the vote[edit]

The five largest shares of the vote won by any candidate, since 1918, are as follows:

Largest number of votes[edit]

The most votes received by a single individual in a general election was Sir Cooper Rawson who polled 75,205 votes when being reelected as MP for Brighton in 1931. Brighton was a two-member constituency with a larger than average electorate. The most votes received by an individual in a single-seat constituency was 69,762 for Reginald Blair in Hendon in 1935.[1]:101

Largest majority[edit]

The largest majority received by an individual is also Sir Cooper Rawson, reelected with a majority of 62,253 (35.2% of votes) at Brighton in 1931.[1]:101 The largest majority received by a woman is 38,823 (71.4% of votes) by the Countess of Iveagh elected MP for Southend in 1931.

Lowest winning share of the vote[edit]

All general election victors receiving less than 33.33% of the vote are listed. The list is complete from 1945 onwards. Seats with more than one member are omitted.

Name Party Constituency Election % Share
Alasdair McDonnell SDLP Belfast South 2015 24.5[3]
Russell Johnston Liberal Democrats Inverness, Nairn and Lochaber 1992 26.0
Frank Privett Conservative Portsmouth Central 1922 26.8[1]:103
John McQuade DUP Belfast North 1979 27.6
Ben Lake Plaid Cymru Ceredigion 2017 29.2
Simon Wright Liberal Democrats Norwich South 2010 29.4
C. W. Crook Conservative East Ham North 1922 29.7
Annabelle Ewing SNP Perth 2001 29.7
Alan Reid Liberal Democrats Argyll and Bute 2001 29.9
William McCrea DUP Mid Ulster 1983 30.0
Angus Robertson SNP Moray 2001 30.3
Emma Pengelly DUP Belfast South 2017 30.4
John Pugh Liberal Democrats Southport 2015 31.0[3]
Albert Owen Labour Ynys Môn 2015 31.1[3]
Margaret Bain SNP East Dunbartonshire 1974 October 31.2
Michael Moore Liberal Democrats Tweeddale, Ettrick and Lauderdale 1997 31.2
Cynog Dafis Plaid Cymru Ceredigion and Pembroke North 1992 31.3
Caroline Lucas Green Brighton Pavilion 2010 31.3
Peter Robinson DUP Belfast East 1979 31.4
Gordon Banks Labour Ochil and South Perthshire 2005 31.4
Roger Thomas Labour Carmarthen 1983 31.6
Alan Reid Liberal Democrats Argyll and Bute 2010 31.6
Phil Woolas Labour Oldham East and Saddleworth 2010 31.9
Gregory Campbell DUP East Londonderry 2001 32.1
Alasdair McDonnell SDLP Belfast South 2005 32.3
Russell Johnston Liberal Inverness 1974 October 32.4
Chris Hazzard Sinn Féin South Down 2019 32.4
Jim Cunningham Labour Coventry South East 1992 32.6
Angela Crawley SNP Lanark and Hamilton East 2017 32.6
Anna McCurley Conservative Renfrew West and Inverclyde 1983 32.7
David Simpson DUP Upper Bann 2015 32.7[3]
Danny Kinahan UUP South Antrim 2015 32.7[3]
Austin Mitchell Labour Great Grimsby 2010 32.7
Glenda Jackson Labour Hampstead and Kilburn 2010 32.8
Stephen Gethins SNP North East Fife 2017 32.9
Roger Godsiff Labour Birmingham Hall Green 2010 32.9
David Price-White Conservative Caernarfon 1945 32.9
Chris Williamson Labour Derby North 2010 33.0
Hamish Gray Conservative Ross and Cromarty 1970 33.2
Nigel Griffiths Labour Edinburgh South 2005 33.2

Lowest share of the vote[edit]

Major parties less than 1% of the vote[edit]

Since 1918:

% share Candidate Party Constituency Election
0.1 Paul Shea NI Conservatives Belfast West 2015
0.3 Lucille Nicholson NI Conservatives Mid Ulster 2015
0.4 Claire-Louise Leyland NI Conservatives Tyrone West 2015
0.4 Hamish Badenoch NI Conservatives Foyle 2015
0.4 Robert Rigby NI Conservatives Newry and Armagh 2015
0.4 Amandeep Singh Bhogal NI Conservatives Upper Bann 2015
0.6 Clare Salier NI Conservatives Belfast South 2017
0.7 Felicity Buchan NI Conservatives South Down 2015
0.7 Gary McLelland Liberal Democrats Glasgow East 2015[3]
0.8 Eileen Baxendale Liberal Democrats Glasgow North East 2015[3]
0.8 Karen Roberts Liberal Democrats Rhondda 2017
0.8 Liz St Clair-Legge NI Conservatives East Londonderry 2017
0.9 Flo Clucas Liberal Democrats West Bromwich West 2017
0.9 Ben France Liberal Democrats Dudley North 2017
0.9 Carol Freeman NI Conservatives Antrim North 2015
0.9 Brian Price NI Conservatives Upper Bann 1997
0.9 Cameron Sullivan Liberal Democrats Blaenau Gwent 2017

The Conservatives' worst vote outside Northern Ireland was 1.1% for A. Seaton in Pontypridd in 1918.

Labour's worst vote was 2.2% for Samuel McLaren in Glasgow Bridgeton in 1935 and in 2010 for Jonathan Todd in Westmorland and Lonsdale.

Candidates winning fewer than ten votes[edit]

Candidates in general elections since 1918 who won fewer than ten votes:

Votes Candidate Party Constituency Election
1 Catherine Taylor-Dawson Vote For Yourself Rainbow Dream Ticket Cardiff North 2005[5]
3 Bobby Smith Give Me Back Elmo Maidenhead 2017[6]
5 Martin Kyslun Independent West Derbyshire 2005[5]
5 William Tobin Independent Uxbridge and South Ruislip 2019[7]
7 Dorian Vanbraam Renaissance Democrat Putney 1997[8]
7 Andres Mendoza Communist League Islington North 2017[9]
8 Bobby Smith Give Me Back Elmo Uxbridge and South Ruislip 2019[10]

Both W. M. Somerville in Bewdley at the 1874 United Kingdom general election and F. R. Lees in Drogheda at the 1852 United Kingdom general election received no votes.[1]:102

Smallest majorities[edit]

Since 1945


  1. ^ At the election, the sitting Conservative Member, John Wentworth Addison, tied with his Liberal opponent, A.B. Rowley, on 3,049 votes each. The returning officer, acting under the law at the time, gave a casting vote to Addison, giving him an effective majority of one.[1]:103
  2. ^ At the election, the Liberal candidate, Harold St. Maur was declared elected by a majority of 4 votes, but on petition, after a lengthy hearing and several recounts at the High Court, the previous Conservative Member Henry Duke was declared elected by a single vote.[1]:103
  3. ^ The 1997 general election result was declared void, and at the subsequent by-election the Liberal Democrat majority swelled to over 20,000 votes.
  4. ^ As well as being the smallest majority at this election only 429 votes separated the top three candidates.

Most recounts[edit]

Highest turnout[edit]

Highest turnouts in any general election since 1918:

Lowest turnout[edit]

All turnouts below 35% from 1918 onwards:

Constituency Election Turnout (%)
Lambeth Kennington 1918 29.7[5]
Birmingham Deritend 1918 30.7
Bethnal Green North East 1918 31.2
Birmingham Duddeston 1918 32.4
Limehouse 1918 33.4
Liverpool Riverside 2001 34.1
Aberdeenshire and East Kincardineshire 1918 34.2

Until 2001, the lowest turnout after 1918 was 37.4% in Orkney and Shetland in 1922.

Most candidates[edit]

Any number of candidates can be nominated for election under current UK electoral law. The only restrictions are that a candidate must be a Commonwealth or Irish citizen, not legally disqualified, with the valid nomination of ten electors from the constituency. Candidates must pay a £500 deposit which is only refunded if the candidate wins 5% or more of the votes cast.

Fourteen constituencies have seen more than ten candidates stand in a general election:

Candidates Constituency Election Incumbent
15 Sedgefield 2005 Tony Blair[5]
13 Maidenhead 2017 Theresa May
13 Uxbridge and South Ruislip 2015 None
12 Uxbridge and South Ruislip 2019 Boris Johnson
12 Hackney South and Shoreditch 2010 Meg Hillier
12 Luton South 2010 None
12 Witney 2015 David Cameron
11 Finchley 1983 Margaret Thatcher[11]
11 Isle of Wight 2010 Andrew Turner
11 Bethnal Green and Bow 2010 None
11 Camberwell and Peckham 2010 Harriet Harman
11 Bethnal Green and Bow 2015 Rushanara Ali
11 Camberwell and Peckham 2015 Harriet Harman
11 Hackney South and Shoreditch 2015 Meg Hillier
11 Thanet South 2015 None

The two cases from before 2010 were both the constituency of the Prime Minister. Before 1983, the consecutive records were 6 candidates in Paddington North in 1918,[12] 7 in Tottenham in February 1974 and 9 in Devon North in 1979.

Fewest candidates[edit]

The last four seats to be uncontested at a general election were Armagh, Londonderry, North Antrim and South Antrim, at the 1951 general election. The last seats in Great Britain to be uncontested were Liverpool Scotland and Rhondda West, at the 1945 general election.

Three seats were contested only by Labour and Conservative candidates at the 1979 general election: Birmingham Handsworth, Dudley West and Salford East.

Buckingham was the only seat contested by only three candidates at the 2015 general election. Traditionally, the Speaker of the House of Commons is not opposed by major parties, so the only opposition to John Bercow was candidates from the Green Party and from UKIP. However, in the 2017 United Kingdom general election, there were 21 seats with only three candidates and in 2019 there were 20.

Candidate records[edit]

Durable general election candidates[edit]

A selection of politicians who have contested seats in at least thirteen general elections are listed:

Name Parties Contests Successful First Last Notes
Winston Churchill Liberal, Conservative 16 14 1900 1959 Stood in five by-elections, first in 1899
Charles Pelham Villiers Liberal, Liberal Unionist 15 15 1835 1895
Kenneth Clarke Conservative 15 13 1964 2017
Edward Heath Conservative 14 14 1950 1997
T. P. O'Connor Irish Nationalist 14 14 1885 1929
Dennis Skinner Labour 14 13 1970 2019
Peter Tapsell Conservative 14 13 1959 2010 Also stood in 1957 by-election
Gerald Kaufman Labour 14 12 1955 2015 Did not stand 1964 or 1966
Manny Shinwell Labour 14 12 1918 1966 Also stood in 1928 by-election
Michael Foot Labour 14 11 1935 1987 Also stood in 1960 by-election
David Winnick Labour 14 10 1964 2017 Did not stand February 1974
David Lloyd George Liberal 13 13 1892 1935 Also stood in 1890 by-election
Edward Turnour Conservative 13 13 1906 1950 Also stood in 1904 by-election
Tony Benn Labour 13 12 1951 1997 Stood in four by-elections, first in 1950
Margaret Beckett Labour 13 11 1974 Feb 2019 Still serving

MPs defeated at consecutive general elections[edit]

On rare occasions, an MP has been defeated at a general election, returned at a by-election, only to be defeated again at the subsequent general election. Shirley Williams is distinguished by achieving this while in two different parties.


  • a returned to Parliament at a subsequent general election
  • b returned to Parliament at a subsequent by-election

Former MPs unsuccessful at subsequent general elections[edit]


It is unusual for a defeated MP to pursue more than a couple of attempts at re-election.


  • a in various seats
  • b in the same seat
  • c two previous seats and another
  • d one previous seat and another
  • e one previous seat and others


Attempts at a comeback usually occur almost immediately. Those who succeeded after further general elections include:

Future MPs unsuccessful at previous general elections[edit]

It is unusual for a candidate who has been unsuccessful on more than a couple of occasions to finally win a seat.

Among women, namely:

Former MPs making a comeback at a general election[edit]

Shortest-serving general election victors[edit]

For a comprehensive list of MPs with total service of less than 365 days see List of United Kingdom MPs with the shortest service

Since 1945[edit]

Candidate Party Constituency Year Days
Alfred Dobbs Labour Smethwick 1945 11
John Sunderland Labour Preston 1945 1221
John Whittaker Labour Heywood and Radcliffe 1945 1371
Philip Clarke Sinn Féin Fermanagh and South Tyrone 1955 1523x
Thomas Mitchell Sinn Féin Mid-Ulster 1955 1523x
Harry West UUP Fermanagh and South Tyrone February 1974 2242
James Godfrey MacManaway UUP Belfast West 1950 2383
Judith Chaplin Conservative Newbury 1992 3161
Peter Law Independent Blaenau Gwent 2005 3551
Harry Harpham Labour Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough 2015 2731
Barry McElduff Sinn Féin West Tyrone 2017 2224


Candidate Party Constituency Year Days
Thomas Higgins Irish Parliamentary Galway North 1906 01
James Annand Liberal East Aberdeenshire 1906 161
Joseph Nicholas Bell Labour Newcastle East 1922 321
Harry Wrightson Conservative Leyton West 1918 321
Hugh Alfred Anderson Irish Unionist Londonderry North 1918 664
Pierce McCan Sinn Féin East Tipperary 1918 681x
Alexander Theodore Gordon Unionist Aberdeen and Kincardine Central 1918 681
Charles James Mathew Labour Whitechapel and St. George's 1922 851
Robert Climie Labour Kilmarnock 1929 1261b
George Henry Williamson Conservative Worcester 1906 1283
Harold St. Maur Liberal Exeter December 1910 1293
John Gibb Thom Unionist Dunbartonshire 1931 1424b
Richard Mathias Liberal Cheltenham December 1910 1443
George Brown Hillman Conservative Wakefield 1931 1441
John Barker Liberal Maidstone 1900 1473a
Edward George Clarke Conservative City of London 1906 1504b
Frederick Guest Liberal East Dorset January 1910 1543a
Eugene O'Sullivan Irish Parliamentary East Kerry January 1910 1703
David Henderson MacDonald Unionist Bothwell 1918 1761
Thomas Agar-Robartes Liberal Bodmin 1906 1833a
Herbert Sparkes Conservative Tiverton 1922 1881
Hilton Philipson National Liberal Berwick-on-Tweed 1922 1973
Armine Wodehouse Conservative Saffron Walden 1900 2001
Frederick Rutherfoord Harris Conservative Monmouth 1900 2103a
Moreton Frewen All-for-Ireland Cork North-East December 1910 2204
Arthur Wellesley Willey Conservative Leeds Central 1922 2291
Ellis Ellis-Griffith Liberal Carmarthen 1923 2524b
William Ward Conservative Wednesbury 1931 2735b
Alfred Holland Labour Clay Cross 1935 2901
Charles Harvey Dixon Conservative Rutland and Stamford 1922 3111b
Arthur Henniker-Hughan Unionist Galloway 1924 3401
George Ernest Spero Labour Fulham West 1929 3414b
Martin Morris Irish Unionist Galway Borough 1900 3425


  • 1 died
  • 2 defeated at next general election
  • 3 disqualified
  • 4 resigned
  • 5 succeeded to the Peerage
  • a returned to Parliament at a subsequent election
  • b had served previously as an MP
  • x elected on abstentionist tickets, and serving jail sentences at the time, so the calculated length of service is somewhat theoretical.

Youngest general election victors[edit]

Babies of the House elected at general elections[edit]

See Baby of the House of Commons

Youngest to leave the House[edit]

1 Defeated
2 Constituency abolished
3 Retired
x did not take his seat

Oldest to lose their seats[edit]

Age Candidate Party Constituency Election
87 Dennis Skinner Labour Bolsover 2019
83 David Winnick Labour Walsall North 2017
80 Charles William Bowerman Labour Deptford 1931
77 Thomas Dyke Acland Liberal Wellington 1886
76 Arthur Shirley Benn Conservative Sheffield Park 1931
76 Frank Smith Labour Nuneaton 1931
76 Edward Evans Labour Lowestoft 1959
76 Cecil Walker UUP Belfast North 2001
75 James Sexton Labour St Helens 1931
75 Fenner Brockway Labour Eton and Slough 1964
75 Syd Bidwell Independent Labour Ealing Southall 1992
75 Richard Taylor Health Concern Wyre Forest 2010
74 Henry Blundell-Hollinshead-Blundell Conservative Ince 1906
74 George Edwards Labour South Norfolk 1924
74 Enoch Powell UUP South Down 1987
74 Peggy Fenner Conservative Medway 1997
74 Tom Clarke Labour Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill 2015
73 James Fergusson Conservative Manchester North East 1906
73 Robert Hobart Liberal New Forest 1910 Jan
73 James Hindle Hudson Labour Ealing North 1955
72 George Edwards Labour South Norfolk 1922
72 Robert Aske Liberal National Newcastle upon Tyne East 1945
72 Albert Stubbs Labour Cambridgeshire 1950
72 Caroline Ganley Labour Battersea South 1951
71 John Cobbold Conservative Ipswich 1868
71 Sir Mark MacTaggart-Stewart Conservative Kirkcudbrightshire 1906
71 Arthur Strauss Conservative Paddington North 1918
71 Sir William Middlebrook Liberal Leeds South 1922
71 Sir Davison Dalziel Conservative Brixton 1923
71 Ben Tillett Labour Salford North 1931
711 David Hardie Labour Glasgow Rutherglen 1931
71 Henry Guest Conservative Plymouth Drake 1945
71 Rhodes Boyson Conservative Brent North 1997
71 Gordon Birtwistle Liberal Democrats Burnley 2015
71 Vince Cable Liberal Democrats Twickenham 2015
70 Marshall Stevens Conservative Eccles 1922
70 Thomas Jewell Bennett Conservative Sevenoaks 1923
70 Charles Wilson Conservative Leeds Central 1929
70 John Potts Labour Barnsley 1931
70 Jonah Walker-Smith Conservative Barrow in Furness 1945
70 Dryden Brook Labour Halifax 1955
70 Charles William Gibson Labour Clapham 1959
70 Sir Samuel Storey Conservative Stretford 1966
70 Hugh Jenkins Labour Putney 1979
70 Dudley Smith Conservative Warwick and Leamington 1997
70 James Hill Conservative Southampton Test 1997
1Based on Hardie's earliest estimated birth year of "c. 1860", although some biographers cite a date as late as 27 January 1871, making him only 60 years old at time of that election.[14]

Oldest general election victors[edit]

At first election[edit]

Possibly the oldest known first-time seat winner was Bernard Kelly (born 1808) who was aged 77 when he became the first MP for the then new seat of South Donegal in Ireland at the 1885 general election. He died aged reportedly 78 on 1 January 1887. Others:

1 Exact birth date not known but Harrison was reportedly this age when he died 5 days after the general election closed and before he took his seat.
2 Exact birth date not known but Fleming, who was brought up as an adopted orphan, is usually stated to have been born in 1747.
3 Exact birthdate not known but Cameron is normally stated to have been born in 1825 and was reportedly this age at election.
4 Exact birthdate not known but Walker is normally stated to have born in 1874 and was reportedly this age at election.
5 Khabra's exact age has been the subject of some disagreement. He claimed a birth year of 1924, which would have made him 67 years old at first election, but his marriage certificate gives a birth year of 1921, and it is this figure which has been used above.

At last election[edit]

1 Davies was suspected of being considerably older than he claimed. There is evidence to suggest he was born in 1879, not 1886; if true, this would indicate he was 90 at his last election.
2 Keene's birthdate is given as "c. 1731" in reference works though he was reportedly 90 years old on his death in February 1822. On this the figure is based. Unopposed return, his last contested election was in 1802 when aged 70–71.
Note: All men aged 79 or over since 1945 and over 85 since 1900 are listed, as are all women aged 70 or over.

Returning to the house after a gap[edit]

A contender for the longest gap prior to returning at a general election was possibly Henry Drummond (1786–1860), who returned to the House of Commons in the 1847 general election as member for West Surrey, after a near 35-year absence, though aged only 60. He was previously MP for Plympton Erle from 1810–12.

Others, who returned at older ages than Drummond's:

First women general election victors[edit]


y had entered parliament in by-election 1919 z had entered parliament in by-election 1921

First ethnic minority general election victors[edit]

First general election victors from specific religions[edit]

When the UK Parliament was established in 1801, non-Anglicans were prevented from taking their seats as MPs under the Test Act 1672. However, Methodists took communion at Anglican churches until 1795, and some continued to do so, and many Presbyterians were prepared to accept Anglican communion, thus ensuring that members of these creeds were represented in the Parliament.[15] Some Unitarians were also elected.

The first Roman Catholic general election victors in the UK Parliament were at the 1830 general election. They included Daniel O'Connell and James Patrick Mahon in Clare.

The first Quaker general election victor was Edward Pease at the 1832 general election.

The first Moravian general election victor was Charles Hindley at the 1835 general election.

Lionel de Rothschild was the first Jewish general election victor at the 1847 general election. He was not permitted to take his seat until the passage of the Jews Relief Act 1858.

The first Catholic Apostolic general election victor was Henry Drummond also at the 1847 election.

The first Baptist general election victor was George Goodman at the 1852 general election.

The first Congregationalist general election victor was Samuel Morley at the 1865 general election.

The first declared atheist to win a general election was Charles Bradlaugh at the 1880 general election. He was not permitted to take his seat in that parliament, but was elected again at the 1885 general election and allowed to take the oath.

Dadabhai Naoroji was the first Parsi general election victor at the 1892 general election.

Piara Khabra became the first Sikh general election victor at the 1992 general election.

Terry Rooney became the first Mormon general election victor at the 1992 general election (previously taking his seat at a by-election in 1990).

The first Muslim general election victor was Mohammed Sarwar at the 1997 general election.

The first Hindu general election victor was Shailesh Vara at the 2005 general election.

The first Buddhist general election victor was Suella Braverman as Suella Fernandes at the 2015 general election.

General elections losers awarded seats on disqualification of winner[edit]

Lord Robert Grosvenor: Fermanagh and South Tyrone, 1955

Two or more sitting MPs contest general election[edit]

It is of course common for former (defeated) MPs to seek re-election, often in their old constituencies, especially if they are marginal or bellwether seats. What is quite unusual is for two MPs both sitting in the same parliament to seek re-election in the same seat. This usually occurs by reason of boundary changes or party splits.

Notes: 1after announcing his retirement as member for Central Fife, long-serving Scottish Labour MP Willie Hamilton obtained his party's nomination in the hopeless prospect of South Hams in southern England. Hamilton insisted that he knew local parties often found themselves without candidates shortly before nominations closed, and was offering because it would help them out of difficulty; however by standing again and being "defeated" he qualified for an additional allowance.

* Winner

Frequency and duration records[edit]

Longest period without a general election[edit]

The longest possible duration of a Parliament is currently five years. All period of six years or more between general elections are listed:

10 years: 19351945
8 years: December 19101918
6 years: 18121818
6 years: 18201826
6 years: 18411847
6 years: 18591865
6 years: 18681874
6 years: 18741880
6 years: 18861892
6 years: 19001906

Shortest period between general elections[edit]

All period of less than a year between general elections are listed:

7 months: November 1806June 1807
7 months: November/December 1885July 1886
8 months: September 1830(?) – April/May/June 1831
8 months: FebruaryOctober 1974
10 months: December 1923October 1924
11 months: JanuaryDecember 1910

Longest period without a change in government[edit]

The longest continuous Conservative government was in office for almost 18 years, between 4 May 1979 and 2 May 1997.

The longest continuous Labour government was in office for over 13 years, between 2 May 1997 and 11 May 2010.

The longest continuous Liberal government was in office for over 9 years, between 5 December 1905 and 25 May 1915.

The longest continuous coalition government was in office for almost 14 years, between 24 August 1931 and 26 July 1945, although its components changed significantly during that period.

Election days[edit]

Currently, all British Parliamentary elections are invariably held on a Thursday. The last general election not held on a Thursday was the 1931 election, which was held on Tuesday 27 October. Prior to this, it was common to hold general elections on any day of the week (other than Sunday), and until the 1918 general election, polling (and the declaration of results) was held over a period of several weeks.

Suspended elections[edit]

On rare occasions, polling in an individual constituency may be suspended, usually as a result of the death of a candidate. The last occasion was at Thirsk and Malton in 2010, where polling was delayed for three weeks owing to the death of the UKIP candidate.

Previous examples occurred at

Causes of general elections[edit]

Loss of a vote of confidence[edit]

  • 1979
  • 1924

New Prime Minister seeks a mandate[edit]

  • 2019
  • 2017
  • 1955
  • 1935
  • 1931
  • 1923

Prime Minister without a working majority seeks to gain one[edit]

  • 2019
  • October 1974
  • 1966
  • 1951

Prime Minister's choice of date[edit]

  • 2017 (approved by a motion of the House of Commons under the provisions of the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011)
  • 2005
  • 2001
  • 1987
  • 1983
  • February 1974
  • 1970
  • 1959
  • 1950
  • 1929

Parliament had run its course[edit]

  • 2015
  • 2010
  • 1997
  • 1992
  • 1964

Collapse of cooperation within Government[edit]

  • 1922

End of World War[edit]

  • 1945
  • 1918

Miscellaneous records[edit]

Incumbents fall directly from first place to fourth place[edit]

Constituency Election Losing party Gaining party
Norwich South 2015 Liberal Democrats Labour
Belfast North 20011 UUP DUP
Peckham 19312 Labour Conservative
1 UUP had been unopposed by DUP at previous elections.
2 Sitting Labour MP stood instead for the Independent Labour Party and took second place.

Incumbents fall directly from first place to third place[edit]

Constituency Election Losing party Gaining party
Ashfield 2019 Labour Conservative
Clacton 2017 UKIP Conservative
Southport 2017 Liberal Democrats Conservative
Bristol West 2015 Liberal Democrats Labour
Brent Central 2015 Liberal Democrats Labour
Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk 2015 Liberal Democrats SNP
Dumfries and Galloway 2015 Labour SNP
Aberdeenshire West and Kincardine 2015 Liberal Democrats SNP
Bristol North West 2010 Labour Conservative
Colne Valley 2010 Labour Conservative
Watford 2010 Labour Conservative
Belfast South 2005 UUP SDLP
Conwy 1997 Conservative Labour
Aberdeen South 1997 Conservative Labour
Inverness East, Nairn and Lochaber 1997 Liberal Democrats Labour
Stockton South 19831 Labour SDP
Plymouth Devonport 19831 Labour SDP
Caithness and Sutherland 19831 Labour SDP
Erith and Crayford 19831 Labour Conservative
Renfrew West and Inverclyde 19831 Labour Conservative
Southampton Itchen 19831 Labour Conservative
Clwyd South West 19831 Labour Conservative
West Hertfordshire 1983 Labour Conservative
Stevenage 1983 Labour Conservative
East Dunbartonshire 1979 SNP Labour
North Down 1979 2 UUP Independent Unionist
Mid Ulster 1974 Feb Unity Vanguard
Bolton West 1964 Liberal Labour
Glasgow Bridgeton 1950 3 Ind. Labour Party Labour
Rugby 1950 Independent Labour
Hammersmith North 1950 Independent Labour Labour
Grantham 1950 Independent Conservative
Cheltenham 1950 Independent Conservative
Stepney 1950 Communist Labour
West Fife 1950 Communist Labour
Caithness and Sutherland 1945 Liberal Unionist
1 The sitting Labour MP had defected to the SDP in 1981.
2 The sitting Ulster Unionist Party MP had defected to sit as an Independent Unionist.
3 The sitting Independent Labour Party MP had defected to Labour.

Outgoing Government gains seats[edit]

When there is a decisive change in electoral sentiment, a tiny number of seats will not only buck the trend by not moving as expected, but may actually move in the opposite direction. Only elections that saw a change of government are listed, since it is fairly common for a few seats to move in divergent directions when an incumbent government is re-elected; 2005 was an exception to this case, when the Labour party scored no gains.


By-election losses regained[edit]
February 1974[edit]
By-election losses regained[edit]
By-election losses regained[edit]
By-election losses regained[edit]
By-election losses regained[edit]


By-election losses regained[edit]
Conservative Gains[edit]
SNP Gains[edit]
Plaid Cymru Gains[edit]
By-election losses regained[edit]
By-election losses regained[edit]

Incoming Government loses seats[edit]


Notes: In 2010 the Conservatives entered government as the largest party in a coalition and in 2015 they went from being part of a coalition to being a majority government in their own right.
In 2017 the Conservatives entered government without an overall majority and in 2019 they went from having a minority government to being a majority government in their own right.


Liberal Democrats[edit]

Note: In 2010 the Liberal Democrats entered government as a junior partner in a coalition.

Liberal Party (pre-Liberal Democrats)[edit]

Notes: 1 by-election loss confirmed at the general election

Seats gained from fourth place*[edit]

Seats gained from third place*[edit]

* only includes examples of genuine three-or-more party competition; does not include seats gained as a result of pacts
1 sitting member had defected from UUP to DUP
2 Liberal Democrats had won a by-election in predecessor constituency in which Labour finished second
3 by-election gain confirmed at general election.
4 SDP candidate ran for the Alliance in seat with strong Liberal tradition.

General election victors had not contested previous election[edit]

It is unusual for a party that had not contested the seat at the previous election to win it. Since the major mainland parties now routinely contest all seats, except the Speaker's, such rare victories tend to come from independents or splinter-parties.


  • 1 Vanguard broke up in the late 1970s; the sitting MP joined the Ulster Unionists.
  • 2 Vanguard broke up in the late 1970s; the sitting MP joined the United Ulster Unionists.
  • 3 By-election gain confirmed at the general election.
  • 4 The Protestant Unionist Party merged into the Democratic Unionist Party in 1970.
  • 5 Sitting MP Gerry Fitt had left the Republican Labour Party for the SDLP in 1970; by 1974 Republican Labour had disintegrated.

Incumbent party did not contest[edit]

The rare occasions where the party which won the previous election did not contest the seat. Independent candidates are not included, nor are Speakers of the House or Commons. Also excluded are occasions where the party had merged into an organisation which did contest the election, such as when the Social Democratic Party and Liberal Party formed the Liberal Democrats, or the Vanguard Unionist Progressive Party merged into the Ulster Unionist Party.

Election Constituency Incumbent party Notes
1997 North Down UPUP Sole UPUP MP had died and party had subsequently collapsed.
1983 Mid Ulster UUUP UUUP had dissolved and former MP stood down.
1974 February Belfast West Republican Labour MP had defected to the Social Democratic and Labour Party and RLP had dissolved.
1959 Caithness and Sutherland Unionist Stood aside for Independent Unionist David Robertson.
1955 Fermanagh and Tyrone Nationalist Stood aside for Sinn Féin candidate.
1950 Chelmsford Common Wealth MP had defected to Labour and party decided not to contest any further elections.
1950 Glasgow Camlachie Ind. Labour Party MP had defected to Labour, then the ILP had performed badly in the 1948 by-election.

Major party did not run[edit]



Liberal Democrats[edit]

Liberal Party (pre-Liberal Democrats)[edit]

1: An occasion where a major party stood aside against the Speaker of the House of Commons.
2: As part of the Unite to Remain pact, the Liberal Democrats stood aside in favour of Green (2G), Plaid Cymru (2P) and independent (2I) candidates in some seats.

Victories by minor parties[edit]

Victories by independent and minor party candidates since 1945. For a complete list, see the list of UK minor party and independent MPs elected.

Election Member Party Constituency
2019 Caroline Lucas Green Brighton Pavilion
Stephen Farry Alliance North Down
2017 Caroline Lucas Green Brighton Pavilion
Sylvia Hermon Independent North Down
2015 Caroline Lucas Green Brighton Pavilion
Sylvia Hermon Independent North Down
Douglas Carswell UKIP Clacton
2010 Caroline Lucas Green Brighton Pavilion
Sylvia Hermon Independent North Down
Naomi Long Alliance Belfast East
2005 Richard Taylor Kidderminister Health Concern Wyre Forest
George Galloway Respect Party Bethnal Green and Bow
Peter Law Independent Blaenau Gwent
2001 Richard Taylor Kidderminister Health Concern Wyre Forest
1997 Martin Bell Independent Tatton
February 1974 Dick Taverne Democratic Labour Lincoln
Eddie Milne Independent Labour Blyth
1970 Stephen Owen Davies Independent Merthyr Tydfil

Independent candidates winning 10% or more[edit]

Independent candidates who did not win, but took 10% or more of the vote in their constituency

Constituency Election Candidate Votes Percentage Position Notes
Batley and Spen 2019 Paul Halloran 6,432 12.2 3
Beaconsfield 2019 Dominic Grieve 16,765 29.0 2 Previously represented the seat for the Conservatives
Birkenhead 2019 Frank Field 7,285 17.2 2 Previously represented the seat for Labour
Buckingham 2017 Scott Raven 5,638 10.7 3 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow
Bradford West 2017 Salma Yaqoob 6,345 13.9 3
Chorley 2019 Mark Brexit-Smith 9,439 23.7 2 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, Lindsay Hoyle. Selected as a Brexit Party candidate, ran as an independent after the party withdrew
Ealing Southall 2001 Avtar Lit 5,764 12.3 3
East Devon 2015 Claire Wright 13,140 24.0 2
East Devon 2017 Claire Wright 21,270 35.2 2
East Devon 2019 Claire Wright 25,869 40.4 2
Fermanagh and South Tyrone 2001 Jim Dixon 6,843 13.2 4
Fermanagh and South Tyrone 2010 Rodney Connor 21,300 41.5 2 Supported by the DUP and UUP
Fylde 2015 Mike Hill 5,166 11.9 4
Hereford and South Herefordshire 2017 Jim Kenyon 5,560 11.0 3
Middlesbrough 2019 Antony High 4,548 14.2 3
Sedgefield 2005 Reg Keys 4,252 10.3 4 Standing against the then-Prime Minister Tony Blair
South West Hertfordshire 2019 David Gauke 15,919 26.0 2 Previously represented the seat for the Conservatives
West Bromwich West 1997 Richard Silvester 8,546 23.3 2 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, Betty Boothroyd
West Tyrone 2005 Kieran Deeny 11,905 27.4 2

Minor parties other strong performance[edit]

Parties without representation in Parliament which won 10% or more of the votes cast:

Party Constituency Election Candidate Votes Percentage Position Notes
Alliance Belfast East 1983 Oliver Napier 9,373 24.1 3
Alliance Belfast East 1987 John Alderdice 10,574 32.1 2
Alliance Belfast East 1992 John Alderdice 10,650 29.8 2
Alliance Belfast East 1997 Jim Hendron 9,288 23.8 3
Alliance Belfast East 2001 David Alderdice 5,832 15.8 3
Alliance Belfast East 2005 Naomi Long 15,443 36.0 2
Alliance Belfast East 2017 Naomi Long 3,746 12.2 3
Alliance Belfast South 1983 David Cook 8,945 23.9 2
Alliance Belfast South 1987 David Cook 6,963 21.3 2
Alliance Belfast South 1992 John Montgomery 5,054 15.0 3
Alliance Belfast South 1997 Steve McBride 5,112 12.9 4
Alliance Belfast South 2010 Anna Lo 5,114 15.0 4
Alliance Belfast South 2017 Paula Bradshaw 7,946 18.2 3
Alliance East Antrim 1983 Seán Neeson 7,620 20.0 3
Alliance East Antrim 1987 Seán Neeson 8,582 25.6 2
Alliance East Antrim 1992 Seán Neeson 9,132 23.3 3
Alliance East Antrim 1997 Seán Neeson 6,929 20.2 2
Alliance East Antrim 2001 John Matthews 4,483 12.5 3
Alliance East Antrim 2005 Seán Neeson 4,869 15.3 3
Alliance East Antrim 2010 Gerry Lynch 3,377 11.1 3
Alliance East Antrim 2017 Stewart Dickson 5,950 15.6 2
Alliance Lagan Valley 1983 Seamus Close 4,593 11.3 3
Alliance Lagan Valley 1987 Seamus Close 5,728 13.8 2
Alliance Lagan Valley 1992 Seamus Close 6,207 12.7 2
Alliance Lagan Valley 1997 Seamus Close 7,635 17.2 2
Alliance Lagan Valley 2001 Seamus Close 7,624 16.6 2
Alliance Lagan Valley 2005 Seamus Close 4,316 10.1 3
Alliance Lagan Valley 2010 Trevor Lunn 4,174 11.4 3
Alliance Lagan Valley 2017 Aaron McIntyre 4,996 11.1 3
Alliance North Antrim 1987 Gareth Williams 5,140 12.4 3
Alliance North Down 1983 John Cushnahan 9,015 22.1 2
Alliance North Down 1987 John Cushnahan 7,932 19.4 3
Alliance North Down 1992 Addie Morrow 6,611 14.7 3
Alliance North Down 1997 Oliver Napier 7,554 20.7 3
Alliance South Antrim 1983 Gordon Mawhinney 4,612 11.9 3
Alliance South Antrim 1987 Gordon Mawhinney 5,808 16.0 2
Alliance South Antrim 1992 John Blair 5,244 12.4 3
Alliance South Antrim 1997 David Ford 4,668 11.6 3
Alliance Strangford 1983 Addie Morrow 6,171 15.8 3
Alliance Strangford 1987 Addie Morrow 7,553 20.3 2
Alliance Strangford 1992 Kieran McCarthy 7,585 16.9 3
Alliance Strangford 1997 Kieran McCarthy 5,467 13.1 3
Alliance Strangford 2017 Kellie Armstrong 5,693 14.7 2
Ashfield Independents Ashfield 2019 Jason Zadrozny 13,498 27.6 2
Brexit Party Barnsley Central 2019 Victoria Felton 11,233 30.4 2
Brexit Party Barnsley East 2019 Jim Ferguson 11,112 29.2 2
Brexit Party Bassetlaw 2019 Debbie Soloman 5,366 10.6 3
Brexit Party Blaenau Gwent 2019 Richard Taylor 6,215 20.6 2
Brexit Party Blaydon 2019 Michael Robinson 5,833 12.8 3
Brexit Party Caerphilly 2019 Nathan Gill 4,490 11.2 4
Brexit Party Chesterfield 2019 John Scotting 4,771 10.6 3
Brexit Party Cynon Valley 2019 Rebecca Rees-Evans 3,045 10.1 3
Brexit Party Doncaster Central 2019 Surjit Duhre 6,842 16.5 3
Brexit Party Doncaster North 2019 Andy Stewart 8,294 20.4 3
Brexit Party North Durham 2019 Peter Telford 4,693 11.1 3
Brexit Party Don Valley 2019 Paul Whitehurst 6,247 13.7 3
Brexit Party Easington 2019 Julie Maughan 6,744 19.5 3
Brexit Party Hartlepool 2019 Richard Tice 10,603 25.8 3
Brexit Party Hemsworth 2019 Waj Ali 5,930 13.5 3
Brexit Party Houghton and Sunderland South 2019 Kevin Yuill 6,165 15.5 3
Brexit Party Kingston upon Hull East 2019 Marten Hall 5,764 17.8 3
Brexit Party Kingston upon Hull North 2019 Derek Abram 4,771 13.9 3
Brexit Party Kingston upon Hull West and Hessle 2019 Michelle Dewberry 5,638 18.0 3
Brexit Party Islwyn 2019 James Wells 4,834 14.1 3
Brexit Party Jarrow 2019 Richard Leslie Monaghan 4,172 10.0 3
Brexit Party Makerfield 2019 Ross Wright 5,817 13.1 3
Brexit Party Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney 2019 David Jones 3,604 11.2 3
Brexit Party North Durham 2019 Peter Telford 4,693 11.1 3
Brexit Party North Tyneside 2019 Andrew Husband 5,254 10.4 3
Brexit Party Normanton, Pontefract and Castleford 2019 Deneice Florence-Jukes 8,032 16.6 3
Brexit Party Rhondda 2019 John Watkins 3,733 12.6 4
Brexit Party Rother Valley 2019 Allen Cowles 6,264 12.9 3
Brexit Party Rotherham 2019 Paul Hague 6,125 17.2 3
Brexit Party Sheffield South East 2019 Kirk Kus 4,478 10.7 3
Brexit Party South Shields 2019 Glenn Michael Thompson 6,446 17.0 3
Brexit Party St Helens North 2019 Malcolm Webster 5,396 11.3 3
Brexit Party St Helens South and Whiston 2019 Daniel Oxley 5,353 10.6 3
Brexit Party Sunderland Central 2019 Viral Parikh 5,047 11.6 3
Brexit Party Torfaen 2019 David Thomas 5,742 15.4 3
Brexit Party Washington and Sunderland West 2019 Howard Brown 5,439 14.5 3
Brexit Party Wentworth and Dearne 2019 Stephen Cavell 7,019 16.9 3
Brexit Party Wigan 2019 William Molloy 5,959 13.2 3
BNP Barking 2005 Richard Barnbrook 4,916 16.9 3
BNP Barking 2010 Nick Griffin 6,620 14.8 3
BNP Burnley 2001 Steve Smith 4,151 11.3 4
BNP Burnley 2005 Len Starr 4,003 10.1 5
BNP Dewsbury 2005 David Exley 5,066 13.1 4
BNP Oldham West and Royton 2001 Nick Griffin 6,552 16.4 3
BNP Rotherham 2010 Marlene Guest 3,906 10.4 4
Buckinghamshire Campaign for Democracy Buckingham 2010 John Stevens 10,331 21.4 2 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow
Burnley First Burnley 2005 Harry Brooks 5,786 14.8 3
Green Brighton Pavilion 2005 Keith Taylor 9,571 22.0 3
Green Lewisham Deptford 2005 Darren Johnson 3,367 11.4 4
Green Norwich South 2010 Adrian Ramsay 7,095 14.9 4
Liberal Liverpool West Derby 2001 Steve Radford 4,601 14.9 2
Liberal Liverpool West Derby 2005 Steve Radford 3,606 11.8 3
National Democrats West Bromwich West 1997 Steve Edwards 4,181 11.4 3 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, Betty Boothroyd
National Health Action Wyre Forest 2015 Richard Taylor 7,221 14.6 4 Taylor had served as MP for the constituency from 2001 to 2010
National Health Action South West Surrey 2017 Louise Irvine 12,093 20.0 2
NI Labour Belfast East 1974 Oct David Bleakley 8,122 14.1 3
Orkney and Shetland Movement Orkney and Shetland 1987 John Goodlad 3,095 14.5 4
People Before Profit Belfast West 2015 Gerry Carroll 6,798 19.2 2 Represented in the Dáil
People Before Profit Belfast West 2017 Gerry Carroll 4,132 10.2 3 Represented in the Northern Ireland Assembly and Dáil
People Before Profit Belfast West 2019 Gerry Carroll 6,194 16.0 3 Represented in the Northern Ireland Assembly and Dáil
People's Justice Birmingham Sparkbrook and Small Heath 2001 Shafaq Hussain 4,770 13.0 3
PUP Belfast East 2001 David Ervine 3,669 10.0 4
PUP Belfast South 1997 David Ervine 5,687 14.4 3
Protestant Unionist Belfast North 1987 George Seawright 5,671 15.4 3
Real Unionist North Down 1987 Bob McCartney 14,467 35.4 2
Respect Birmingham Sparkbrook and Small Heath 2005 Salma Yaqoob 10,498 27.5 2
Respect East Ham 2005 Abdul Khaliq Mian 8,171 20.7 2
Respect Poplar and Canning Town 2005 Oliur Rahman 6,573 17.2 3
Respect West Ham 2005 Lindsey German 6,039 19.5 2
Scottish Militant Labour Glasgow Pollok 1992 Tommy Sheridan 6,287 19.3 2
Scottish Socialist Glasgow Pollok 1997 Tommy Sheridan 3,639 11.1 3
Sinn Féin Belfast North 1997 Gerry Kelly 8,375 20.2 3
Sinn Féin Fermanagh and South Tyrone 1997 Gerry McHugh 11,174 23.1 2
Sinn Féin Foyle 1997 Mitchel McLaughlin 11,445 23.9 2
Sinn Féin Newry and Armagh 1997 Pat McNamee 11,218 21.1 3
Sinn Féin South Down 1997 Mick Murphy 5,127 10.4 3
Sinn Féin Upper Bann 1997 Bernadette O'Hagan 5,773 12.1 3
Sinn Féin West Tyrone 1997 Pat Doherty 14,280 30.9 3
Socialist Labour Glasgow North East 2005 Doris Kelly 4,036 14.2 3 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, Michael Martin
TUV North Antrim 2010 Jim Allister 7,114 16.8 2
UUP East Antrim 2019 Stephen Aiken 5,475 15.0 3
UUP Lagan Valley 2019 Robbie Buttler 8,606 19.1 3
UUP Fermanagh and South Tyrone 2019 Tom Elliot 21,929 43.2 2 Just 57 votes short of Sinn Féin, the highest vote share ever achieved by a party with no MPs.
UUP North Antrim 2019 Robin Swann 8,139 18.5 2
UUP North Down 2019 Alan Albert Chambers 4,936 12.1 3
UUP Strangford 2019 Philip Smith 4,023 10.8 3
UUP South Antrim 2019 Danny Kinahan 12,460 29.0 4
UUP Upper Bann 2019 Doug Beattie 6,197 12.4 4
UKIP Buckingham 2010 Nigel Farage 8,410 17.4 3 Standing against the then Speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow
UKIP South Staffordshire 2005 Malcolm Hurst 2,675 10.4 4 Polling day delayed following death of Liberal Democrat candidate from original ballot.

Miscellaneous notable results[edit]

Party leaders or deputy leaders losing their seats[edit]

Constituency Election MP Position Party
East Dunbartonshire 2019 Jo Swinson Leader Liberal Democrats
Belfast North 2019 Nigel Dodds Deputy leader DUP
Moray 2017 Angus Robertson Deputy leader SNP
Belfast East 2015 Naomi Long Deputy leader Alliance
Bradford West 2015 George Galloway Leader Respect
Belfast East 2010 Peter Robinson Leader DUP
Upper Bann 2005 David Trimble Leader UUP
North Down 2001 Robert McCartney Leader UK Unionist
Belfast West 1992 Gerry Adams Leader Sinn Féin
Glasgow Govan 1992 Jim Sillars Deputy Leader SNP
Dundee East 1987 Gordon Wilson Leader SNP
Carmarthen 1979 Gwynfor Evans Leader Plaid Cymru
Cornwall North 1979 John Pardoe Deputy Leader Liberal
Fermanagh and South Tyrone 1974 October Harry West Leader UUP
Belper 1970 George Brown Deputy Leader Labour
Carmarthen 1970 Gwynfor Evans Leader Plaid Cymru
Huddersfield West 1964 Donald Wade Deputy Leader Liberal
Anglesey 1951 Megan Lloyd George Deputy Leader Liberal
Caithness and Sutherland 1945 Archibald Sinclair Leader Liberal
Edinburgh Leith 1945 Ernest Brown Leader Liberal National
Darwen 1935 Herbert Samuel Leader Liberal
Seaham 1935 Ramsay MacDonald Leader National Labour
Burnley 1931 Arthur Henderson Leader Labour
Manchester Platting 1931 John Robert Clynes Deputy Leader Labour
Paisley 1924 H. H. Asquith Leader Liberal
East Fife 1918 H. H. Asquith Leader Liberal
East Mayo 1918 John Dillon Leader Irish Parliamentary
Manchester East 1906 Arthur Balfour Leader Conservative
West Ham South 1895 Keir Hardie Leader Ind. Labour Party
Londonderry City 1892 Justin McCarthy1 Leader Irish National Federation
South West Lancashire 1868 William Ewart Gladstone2 Leader Liberal
1: McCarthy was defeated in Londonderry City, the seat for which he had sat in the previous Parliament. He also stood in North Longford, where he was elected.
2: Gladstone was defeated in South West Lancashire, the seat for which he had sat in the previous Parliament. He also stood in Greenwich, where he was elected.

General elections having historic significance[edit]

First general elections for a new political party[edit]

Listed below parties which have returned MPs, either at the listed election or a later one.

Asterisked – first election where party fielded candidates but MPs elected at later general election. Otherwise all parties listed returned MPs at first contested election.

Last general elections for defunct political parties[edit]

Listed below are parties which had returned MPs and which ceased to exist after the listed election:

* After the Liberal Party and SDP merged to form the Liberal Democrats, some members opposed to the merger formed new parties, the continuation Liberal Party and continuation Social Democratic Party. These parties are legally distinct from their predecessors and have never won a seat in Parliament.

General elections following electoral developments[edit]

Participation in, and outcome of, general elections can be influenced by changes in electoral law or practice.

  • 2019: first general election held because an Act of Parliament specifically called for one (the Early Parliamentary General Election Act 2019, enacted to bypass the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011)
  • 2017: first general election held because MPs voted for an early election under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011
  • 2015: first general election scheduled automatically under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011
  • 2010: first general election following lowering of age of candidacy to 18
  • 2001: first general election in which hereditary peers could vote, and stand as MPs without disclaiming peerage
  • 1970: first general election following reduction of adult voting age to 18
  • 1955: first general election in which all seats were contested
  • 1950: first general election following:
  • 1929: first general election where all adult women (aged 21 upwards) were enfranchised
  • 1922: first general election following secession of Southern Ireland from the UK
  • 1918: first general election in which:
  • women (aged 21 upwards) were eligible only to stand and (aged 30 upwards) were enfranchised
  • all adult males (aged 21 upwards) were enfranchised
  • polling was held on single day
  • postal voting (for armed forces personnel) was allowed
  • established a unified householder franchise
  • comprehensively redistributed parliamentary seats, abolishing many rotten boroughs
  • established 21 years as the youngest age of candidacy (reduced to 18 in 2006)
  • 1830: first general election in which Roman Catholics could stand as MPs (significant in Ireland)
  • 1801: first general election in which Irish voters elected MPs to Westminster, following the Act of Union, on same footing to those in England, Scotland and Wales

See also[edit]



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Craig, F. W. S. (1968). British Parliamentary Election Statistics 1918–1968. Glasgow: Political Reference Publications. p. 20. ISBN 0900178000.
  2. ^ Election 2015: SNP wins 56 of 59 seats in Scots landslide BBC News 8 May 2015
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa Tim Carr, The Politicos Guide to the New House of Commons 2015
  4. ^ "[No title given]". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 17 October 2015. Retrieved 30 June 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Colin Rallings and Michael Thrasher, British electoral facts (Parliamentary Research Services)
  6. ^ "Maidenhead parliamentary constituency – Election 2017". BBC News. BBC.
  7. ^ "Uxbridge & South Ruislip parliamentary constituency – Election 2019". BBC News. BBC.
  8. ^ "Putney [Archive]". www.politicsresources.net.
  9. ^ "Islington North parliamentary constituency – Election 2017". BBC News. BBC.
  10. ^ "Uxbridge & South Ruislip parliamentary constituency – Election 2019". BBC News. BBC.
  11. ^ Research Paper 05/33: General Election 2005 Archived 27 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine, House of Commons Library
  12. ^ Craig, F. W. S. (1968). British Parliamentary Election Statistics 1918–1968. Glasgow: Political Reference Publications. p. 65. ISBN 0900178000.
  13. ^ MacAskill, Ewen; Ratcliffe, Rebecca (8 May 2015). "Mhairi Black: the 20-year-old who beat a Labour heavyweight". The Guardian.
  14. ^ James Keir Hardie 1856–1915 Archived 25 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine at Hunting Dead
  15. ^ Chris Pond, Parliament and Religious Disabilities Archived 28 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  • Who's Who of British MPs: Volume IV, 1945–1979 by Michael Stenton and Stephen Lees (Harvester, Brighton, 1979) ISBN 0-85527-335-6
  • British Parliamentary Constituencies – A Statistical Compendium by Ivor Crewe and Anthony Fox (Faber and Faber, London, 1984) ISBN 0-571-13236-7
  • British Political Facts 1900–1994 by David Butler and Gareth Butler (St. Martin's Press, New York, 1994) ISBN 0-312-12147-4