Wirral West (UK Parliament constituency)

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Coordinates: 53°22′48″N 3°09′32″W / 53.3801°N 3.1590°W / 53.3801; -3.1590

Wirral West
County constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of Wirral West in Merseyside.
Outline map
Location of Merseyside within England.
County Merseyside
Electorate 55,077 (December 2010)[1]
Major settlements Hoylake, West Kirby
Current constituency
Created 1983
Member of parliament Margaret Greenwood (Labour)
Number of members One
Created from Wirral
Overlaps
European Parliament constituency North West England

Wirral West is a county constituency represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It elects one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election. In 2010, with 55,077 people eligible to vote, Wirral West had the smallest electorate of any constituency in England.[2] The current MP is Margaret Greenwood of the Labour Party.

History[edit]

The present Wirral West constituency was formed in 1983, from the northern part of the former Wirral constituency. Its predecessor had traditionally been held by the Conservative Party.

From 1945 until 1976, the MP was Selwyn Lloyd, who served as Foreign Secretary under Anthony Eden and Chancellor of the Exchequer under Harold Macmillan, later becoming Speaker of the Commons in 1971 before being raised to the peerage in 1976. The ensuing by-election was won by David Hunt, who became the first MP for the new seat of Wirral West in 1983. Hunt was a member of John Major's cabinet, serving twice as Secretary of State for Wales and also as Secretary of State for Employment.

Hunt held the seat until 1997, when he lost to Stephen Hesford of the Labour Party. Labour held on narrowly in 2005, despite a challenge from former TV presenter Esther McVey, standing for the Conservatives.

Stephen Hesford announced on the 22 January 2010 that he would be stepping down at the next general election for family reasons. Boundary changes in 2010 meant that the his majority would have been reversed and the Conservatives would have won the seat at the previous election by 569 votes. In the 2010 general election Esther McVey took the seat for the Conservative Party with a swing of 2.3% from Labour.

Wirral West has been described as a bellwether, with results in the constituency mirroring the national result at every election since its formation until 2015.[3][4] However, in the 2015 election Wirral West was gained by Labour, despite the Conservatives winning the election across the UK. Wirral West, like nearby City of Chester, was one of the few Conservative-held marginals outside London to be taken by Labour.

Boundaries[edit]

1983-2010: The Metropolitan Borough of Wirral wards of Hoylake, Prenton, Royden, Thurstaston, and Upton.

2010-present: The Metropolitan Borough of Wirral wards of Greasby, Frankby and Irby, Hoylake and Meols, Pensby and Thingwall, Upton, and West Kirby and Thurstaston.

The constituency is one of four covering the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral. It contains the towns of Hoylake and West Kirby, as well as areas such as Greasby, Thingwall, Irby, Meols, Upton and Woodchurch.

In the 2005 Boundary Commission report, Wirral West lost part of the Prenton ward to the Birkenhead constituency, and gained part of Barnston from Wirral South.

Members of Parliament[edit]

Election Member[5] Party
1983 David Hunt Conservative
1997 Stephen Hesford Labour
2010 Esther McVey Conservative
2015 Margaret Greenwood Labour

Elections[edit]

Elections in the 2010s[edit]

General Election 2015: Wirral West[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Margaret Greenwood 18,898 45.1 +8.9
Conservative Esther McVey 18,481 44.2 +1.7
UKIP Hilary Jones 2,772 6.6 +4.3
Liberal Democrat Peter Timothy Clifford Reisdorf 1,433 3.4 −13.4
Independent David James 274 0.7 -0.1
Majority 417 1.0
Turnout 41,858 75.6
Labour gain from Conservative Swing +3.6
General Election 2010: Wirral West[7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Esther McVey 16,726 42.5 +0.7
Labour Phillip Davies 14,290 36.3 −4.0
Liberal Democrat Peter Timothy Clifford Reisdorf 6,630 16.8 +0.5
UKIP Philip William Barrington Griffiths 899 2.3 +1.1
Independent David Kirwan 506 1.3 +1.3
Common Sense Party David James 321 0.8 +0.8
Majority 2,436 6.2
Turnout 39,372 71.5 +3.4
Conservative gain from Labour Swing +2.4

Elections in the 2000s[edit]

General Election 2005: Wirral West
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Stephen Hesford 17,543 42.5 −4.7
Conservative Esther McVey 16,446 39.9 +2.7
Liberal Democrat Jeffrey John Clarke 6,652 16.1 +0.5
UKIP John Hamilton Moore 429 1.0 N/A
Alternative Party Roger Standring Taylor 163 0.4 N/A
Majority 1,097 2.7
Turnout 41,233 67.5 +2.5
Labour hold Swing −3.7
General Election 2001: Wirral West
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Stephen Hesford 19,105 47.2 +2.3
Conservative Chris James Joseph Lynch 15,070 37.2 −1.8
Liberal Democrat Simon Andrew Holbrook 6,300 15.6 +2.9
Majority 4,035 10.0
Turnout 40,475 65.0 −12.2
Labour hold Swing

Elections in the 1990s[edit]

General Election 1997: Wirral West
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Labour Stephen Hesford 21,035 44.9 +13.9
Conservative David James Fletcher Hunt 18,297 39.0 −13.7
Liberal Democrat John Lestock Thornton 5,945 12.7 −1.9
Referendum Derek Wharton 1,613 3.4 N/A
Majority 2,738 5.8 13.78
Turnout 46,890 77.2 −4.6
Labour gain from Conservative Swing +13.8
General Election 1992: Wirral West[8]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative David James Fletcher Hunt 26,852 52.7 +0.8
Labour Helen Stephenson 15,788 31.0 +4.7
Liberal Democrat John Lestock Thornton 7,420 14.6 −5.6
Green Garnette Mary Bowler 700 1.4 −0.3
Natural Law Nigel John Broome 188 0.4 N/A
Majority 11,064 21.7 −4.0
Turnout 50,948 81.6 +3.6
Conservative hold Swing −2.0

Elections in the 1980s[edit]

General Election 1987: Wirral West
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative David James Fletcher Hunt 25,736 51.9 −3.9
Labour Alexander Hugh Dunn 13,013 26.3 +4.5
Liberal Allan John Brame 10,015 20.2 −2.2
Green David Burton 806 1.6 N/A
Majority 12,723 25.6
Turnout 63,597 77.9
Conservative hold Swing
General Election 1983: Wirral West
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative David James Fletcher Hunt 25,276 55.8 N/A
Liberal Stephen John Mulholland 10,125 22.4 N/A
Labour John Francis McCabe 9,855 21.8 N/A
Majority 15,151 33.4 N/A
Turnout 61,646 73.4 N/A
Conservative win (new seat)

See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

  1. ^ "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  2. ^ http://www.parliament.uk/briefing-papers/SN05677.pdf
  3. ^ Joe Thomas (2015-04-22). "General election 2015: 'Kingmaker' Wirral West voters hold keys to Downing Street". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 2015-05-12. 
  4. ^ Harry Lambert (2015-04-20). "What are the top seats to watch in the election?". New Statesman. Retrieved 2015-05-12. 
  5. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "W" (part 4)[self-published source][better source needed]
  6. ^ "Wirral West". BBC News. Retrieved 8 May 2015. 
  7. ^ http://www.wirral.gov.uk/News/news_0001343.html
  8. ^ "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Retrieved 2010-12-06.