South Dorset (UK Parliament constituency)


South Dorset (UK Parliament constituency)

Coordinates: 50°34′00″N 2°27′15″W / 50.5666°N 2.4541°W / 50.5666; -2.4541

South Dorset
Borough constituency
for the House of Commons
Outline map
Boundary of South Dorset in Dorset.
Outline map
Location of Dorset within England.
County Dorset
Electorate 73,499 (December 2010)[1]
Current constituency
Created 1885 (1885)
Member of Parliament Richard Drax (Conservative)
Number of members One
Overlaps
European Parliament constituency South West England

South Dorset 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.

Contents

Boundaries

The constituency covers a similar area to the borough of Weymouth and Portland and the Purbeck district in Dorset. Weymouth is one of the few large towns in Dorset, but Purbeck is largely rural. The constituency includes Bovington army camp.

History

In the 1997 election, this seat was won by the Conservatives by a margin of only 77 votes, one of the smallest margins in the UK. The constituency went on to be won by Labour from the Conservatives in the 2001 election, but with Labour's smallest majority in England, at 153. In the 2005 election this constituency was one of the few in which Labour significantly increased their majority. Labour may have been helped by the fact that Tony Blair started his official campaign in this seat. A more significant factor perhaps was that Conservative candidate Ed Matts was found to have doctored an image which was part of his campaign material. Matts changed a photo of a protest against the deportation of a South Dorset resident, so that it appeared to be a protest against "uncontrolled immigration". In both elections, the left-wing singer-songwriter Billy Bragg ran an anti-Conservative tactical voting campaign in Dorset constituencies.[citation needed]

Members of Parliament

Election Member[2] Party
1885 Henry Parkman Sturgis Liberal
1886 Charles Joseph Theophilus Hambro [3] Conservative
1891 by-election William Ernest Brymer Conservative
1906 Thomas Scarisbrick Liberal
1910 Angus Valdimar Hambro Conservative
1918 Coalition Conservative
1922 Robert Yerburgh Conservative
1929 Viscount Cranborne [4] Conservative
1941 by-election Viscount Hinchingbrooke [5] Conservative
1962 by-election Guy Barnett Labour
1964 Evelyn King Conservative
1979 Viscount Cranborne Conservative
1987 Ian Bruce Conservative
2001 Jim Knight Labour
2010 Richard Drax Conservative

Elections

Elections in the 2010s

General Election 2010: South Dorset[6]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Richard Drax 22,667 45.1 +7.1
Labour Jim Knight 15,224 30.3 -11.4
Liberal Democrat Ros Kayes 9,557 19.0 +3.2
UKIP Mike Hobson 2,034 4.0 +0.8
Green Brian Heatley 595 1.2 +1.2
Movement for Active Democracy Andy Kirkwood 233 0.5 +0.5
Majority 7,443 14.8
Turnout 50,310 68.1 -1.3
Conservative gain from Labour Swing +9.3

Elections in the 2000s

General Election 2005: South Dorset
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Jim Knight 20,231 41.6 −0.4
Conservative Ed Matts 18,419 37.9 −3.7
Liberal Democrat Graham Oakes 7,647 15.7 +1.3
UKIP Hugh Chalker 1,571 3.2 +1.2
Legalise Cannabis Vic Hamilton 282 0.6 N/A
Respect Berny Parkes 219 0.5 N/A
Personality and Rational Thinking? Yes! Party Andrew Kirkwood 107 0.2 N/A
Wessex Regionalist Colin Bex 83 0.2 N/A
Socialist Labour David Marchesi 25 0.1 N/A
Majority 1,812 3.7
Turnout 48,584 68.7 +3.2
Labour hold Swing +1.7
General Election 2001: South Dorset
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Jim Knight 19,027 42.0 +6.0
Conservative Ian Bruce 18,874 41.6 +5.5
Liberal Democrat Andy Canning 6,531 14.4 -5.8
UKIP Laurie Moss 913 2.0 +0.3
Majority 153 0.4
Turnout 45,345 65.5 -8.5
Labour gain from Conservative Swing

Elections in the 1990s

General Election 1992: South Dorset[7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Conservative Ian Bruce 29,319 50.3 −4.5
Liberal Democrat BEJ Ellis 15,811 27.1 −0.3
Labour A Chedzoy 12,298 21.1 +3.8
Independent Mrs JW Hagel 673 1.2 N/A
Natural Law MRF Griffiths 191 0.3 N/A
Majority 13,508 23.2 −4.2
Turnout 58,292 76.9 +1.4
Conservative hold Swing −2.1

See also

Notes and references

  1. ^ "Electorate Figures - Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. http://www.boundarycommissionforengland.org.uk/electoral-figures/electoral-figures.htm. Retrieved 13 March 2011. 
  2. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "D" (part 2)
  3. ^ Died 1891
  4. ^ Called to the House of Lords, by a writ in acceleration, as Lord Cecil of Essendon in 1941
  5. ^ Succeeded as the 10th Earl of Sandwich
  6. ^ Grainger, Tom (20 April 2010). "Statement of Persons Nominated and Notice of Poll" (PDF). Acting Returning Officer. Weymouth & Portland Borough Council. http://www.dorsetforyou.com/media.jsp?mediaid=147497&filetype=pdf. Retrieved 24 April 2010. 
  7. ^ "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. http://www.politicsresources.net/area/uk/ge92/ge92index.htm. Retrieved 2010-12-06. 

Sources

  • BBC News article on the 2001 South Dorset election

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