Aldershot

2015 Result:
Conservative: 23369 (50.6%)
Labour: 8468 (18.3%)
Lib Dem: 4076 (8.8%)
Green: 2025 (4.4%)
UKIP: 8253 (17.9%)
MAJORITY: 14901 (32.3%)

Category: Very safe Conservative seat

Geography: South East, Hampshire. All of the Rushmoor council area and two wards from the Hart council area.

Main population centres: Farnborough, Aldershot.

Profile: A seat firmly associated with the military, Aldershot contains the Aldershot Barracks, Farnborough Airfield and the headquarters of QinetiQ, the defence research company privatised in 2006. The military vote itself is over-estimated, although the Garrison is an important local employer. In the 2011 the area had the highest proportion of Bhuddists of any part of the UK, a somewhat surprising finding explained by the number of former Ghurkas settling in the town.

Politics: Aldershot is reliably Conservative, having returned a Conservative MP ever since its creation in 1918. Past MPs include the noted Parliamentary wit Julian Critchley, who represented the seat for 27 years.


Current MP
GERALD HOWARTH (Conservative) Born 1947. Educated at Bloxton School and Southampton University. Former international banker. MP for Cannock and Burntwood 1983-1992. First elected as MP for Aldershot in 1997. PPS to Michael Spicer 1987-1990, Minister of State for the Environment 1990-1992. Minister for International Security Strategy 2010-2012. Howarth is a trenchant right-winger, a former member of the Monday club, a member of the Freedom Association`s council and a founding member of the Thatcherite No Turning Back group. In the 1980s he successfully sued the BBC for accusing him of having links to the far-right.
Past Results
2010
Con: 21203 (47%)
Lab: 5489 (12%)
LDem: 15617 (34%)
UKIP: 2041 (4%)
Oth: 1034 (2%)
MAJ: 5586 (12%)
2005*
Con: 20572 (43%)
Lab: 9895 (21%)
LDem: 15238 (32%)
UKIP: 1182 (2%)
Oth: 1254 (3%)
MAJ: 5334 (11%)
2001
Con: 19106 (42%)
Lab: 11391 (25%)
LDem: 12542 (28%)
UKIP: 797 (2%)
Oth: 1479 (3%)
MAJ: 6564 (14%)
1997
Con: 23119 (43%)
Lab: 13057 (24%)
LDem: 16498 (30%)
Oth: 1477 (3%)
MAJ: 6621 (12%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

Demographics
2015 Candidates
GERALD HOWARTH (Conservative) See above.
GARY PUFFETT (Labour) Educated at Leicester University. Fire safety advisor and former firefighter.
ALAN HILLIAR (Liberal Democrat)
WILLIAM WALKER (UKIP)
CARL HEWITT (Green) Born Farnborough. IT project manager and former pilot.
Links
Comments - 140 Responses on “Aldershot”
  1. Dalek is capable of talking crap at times – mind you, we all are from time to time – but he is clearly correct here. This was a sort of vague LD target for some years but they never realistically stood a chance of actuallly taking it, and now surely Labour will take 2nd place for the first time since 1970 (if I’m not very much mistaken). Labour’s support is however not that great outside most of the Aldershot town wards themselves & in N Farnborough – i.e. not in the majority of the constituency – and I believe that many “squaddies” don’t vote in local elections, but do in general ones, and usually not for Labour, so that it’s reasonable to expect the Tories to do better in a general election than a local one in this seat. And the Tories are already doing just fine in the local elections. For those who do not know, Dalek is a Tory councillor in this constituency, and thus knows the area extremely well.

  2. That’s a fair comment. I respect Dalek’s views about Aldershot, the crap usually comes out on Scottish matters.

  3. And, HH, he got the result in Kingston-upon-Thames (his former borough, where also he was in the past a Tory councillor) absolutely spot on – the correct predictions for every single seat in every ward. Even Norbiton I think (where Labour missed getting all 3 seats by just 3 votes).

  4. Agreed

  5. I’m not sure Labour will definitely take second place. There must be the potential for UKIP to get 15-20%.

  6. That’s possible but not sure they have the organization to pull it off

  7. Outside the town itself it’s perhaps a bit too posh for UKIP

  8. Yes, Aldershot itself may have some UKIP potential, not sure Farnborough does, though “posh” is perhaps pushing it a bit for Farnborough. It certainly isn’t a dump (in case Tim is tempted to describe it as such).

  9. …….or a shithole, as Mr Whitehead is apt to say.

  10. Parts of Farnborough certainly are a dump, but not the part that has elected UKIP district and county councillors…

  11. prediction for 2015-

    Con- 43%
    Lib- 25%
    UKIP- 16%
    Lab- 16%

    I’d imagine the seat’s right wing MP will keep many UKIP votes at bay in what otherwise might have been a decent shot for UKIP. I think 20% is the absolute ceiling for UKIP here but all the same they might not even hit 15%.

    When it comes to UKIP’s success in an area I suppose it really depends on whether that are is loyal to the conservative party or social and economic conservatism.

  12. No Robbie! Have you really not read & disgested anything written above? the LDs will NOT beat Labour in this constituency! I promise you.

  13. BM is correct.

    Where ever the Lib Dems stood last May they were out polled by Labour in every one of Rushmoor’s 13 wards with the exception of St Marks Ward.

    Their only support remains in Blackwater & Hawley and the Frogmore part of the Yateley East Ward in Hart District Council.

    Labour on the other had now hold 12 of the 39 seats on Rushmoor BC.

    I am also not sure how it is possible for UKIP to poll 16% of the vote when they only won 1 of the 15 seats up for election within the constituency – particularly when the local Conservative MP is the Chairman of The Conservative Way Forward and should be able to resist much of UKIP’s push for right wing (as opposed to centre – right) Tory votes.

  14. That’d be devastating result for the liberal democrats. That’s a huge gap that will have been closed.

  15. Con 47
    Lab 20
    UKIP 15
    LD 14
    Oth 4

  16. That would be a very reasonable prediction.

    I would put Labour higher because they have advanced strongly in a number of wards as the Lib Dems have collapsed.

    I am certain that the Lib Dems will beat UKIP because they still have support in Blackwater, Hawley, Frogmore, Darby Green and North Camp.

    Also….Sir Gerald Howarth’s position as Chairman of The Conservative Way Forward could limit the movement of right wing voters to UKIP.

    I think it will be –

    Con 43
    Lab 24
    LD 17
    UKIP 12
    Others 4

  17. Taking UKIPs recent win in October and using the wards that UKIP stood in for the May local elections their expectations for GE15 should be quite high.
    Sir Gerald Howarth may well be feeling just a little less safe than usual.

  18. The Green Party of England & Wales have selected Carl Hewitt to stand in this seat. – I know this as I am communications and fundraising officer for the Blackwater Valley Green Party that look after this and 3 other seats.

  19. I would imagine that the Greens would take much of the ex-Lib Dem vote that Labour would hope would come their way. Labour are still likely to come second but the Lib Dems should still beat UKIP.

    Blueangle mentioned the success of UKIP retaining West heath but UKIP have been able to advance outside that ward…even the other two Rushmoor BC wards in their Hampshire CC division.

    I also think that Sir Gerald Howarth will continue to be appealing voters who may chose to desert the Tories for UKIP in other constituencies.

  20. With individual voter registration will many squaddies still be on the electoral register?

  21. There are really not many squaddies left in Aldershot these days. The Army has contracted massively over the years.

  22. I think even when there were a lot more they tended not to vote much in local elections. The decline in their number will tend to help Labour somewhat, though the seat clearly still remains beyond them.

  23. “The Green Party of England & Wales have selected Carl Hewitt to stand in this seat. – I know this as I am communications and fundraising officer for the Blackwater Valley Green Party that look after this and 3 other seats.”

    Have the other three seats selected candidates? My list currently has 453 Green candidates including Aldershot.

  24. Could 453 Green candidates cancel out the impact of UKIP who hoover up more Tory votes…surely the Greens will take Labour and Lib Dem votes?

  25. I now think that the Lib Dems will come 4th here.

    In addition to their core vote their support has previously included people whose first preference was Labour but thought the Lib Dems had a better chance of winning….that will revert back to Labour.

    The vote of apathy that will be hovered up by UKIP.

    Conservative: 20000
    Labour: 10500
    UKIP: 7500
    Lib Dem: 6000

    Con Maj: 9500

  26. The vote of disgruntlement votes.. the vote of apathy does not…

  27. The Daily Mail have published an article exposing 6 UKIP candidates, claiming that they have been re-tweeting cartoons and other material from extreme right wing groups on Twitter or Facebook. The main focus of the article is on Bill Walker, the UKIP candidate for Aldershot.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2973998/Six-Ukip-candidates-links-racist-groups-Party-launches-probe-BNP-cartoon-stereotyping-minorities-posted-online.html

  28. Aldershot Prediction –

    CON – 45
    LD – 21
    LAB – 18
    UKIP – 12
    GREEN – 3
    OTHER – 1

  29. Alan Hilliar’s website is, ahem, a little out of date. It refers to him wanting to be member of parliament for Surrey Heath, which was where he was standing in 2010. This suggests the LibDems are barely planning to turn up in Aldershot. Perhaps all the LIbDem activists have been told to decamp to Eastleigh?
    http://www.alanhilliar.org.uk/

  30. As a SOLDIER (in contention to the phrase “Squaddie” just as I would not refer to an air stewardess as a “trolley-dolly” or a homeless person as a “tramp”) I am very interested in the local elections of an area in which I am likely to be based as it has an impact on my social and domestic life in most cases. I agree that most servicemen and women do not tend to have a high proportion of the vote in this constituency as most tend not to migrate their vote from their hometowns. (myself included until GE10. This is generally due to most postings for Soldiers being very short term (2-3yrs average).

  31. Current Nowcast projection for Aldershot (medium of each range) –

    Con 19923 43.9%
    Lab 7307 16.1%
    LD 6127 13.5%
    UKIP 5945 13.1%
    Green 1135 2.5%

    Con Maj 12616 27.80%

  32. Conservative Hold. 10,000 maj.

  33. Actual result:
    Conservative 23369 50.6%
    Labour 8468 18.3%
    UKIP 8253 17.9%
    Liberal Democrat 4076 8.8%
    Green 2025 4.4%
    Con Maj 14901 32.3%

  34. I received my “Times Guide to the House of Commons 2015” in the post yesterday from Amazon (£35.00 reduced from RRP of £60.00) and it was pretty dire.

    The 2005 guide has inaccuracies (many of the constituencies incorrectly labelled in the map) while the 2010 guide had Tom Harris former Labour MP for Glasgow South apparently having plastic surgery to make himself look like Sajid Javid.

    There is only a small map of the constituencies which are not labelled at all. How do you cross reference each constituency to where it is in the country?

    Worst of all, its printed on low grade paper which means that the pictures of each MP hardly stand out (particularly where there is a dark background). The pictures of the MP’s are only 1cm and added in a stupid circular crop.

    I have the whole collection of Times Guides to the House of Commons from 1970 onwards. Its so sad when they use to be printed on good quality paper, had pictures of MP’s that were approx. 4 x 3 cm and brilliant fold out maps of the whole country.

    Where it not for the fact that I have a collection of all guides since 1970, this would be returned to Amazon, even with the £25.00 discount on the £60.00 RRP.

    Just why do The Times have to _ _ _ _ around with such a great traditional format?

  35. Oh…and they don’t print the previous general election result and changes in the share of the vote….they have a stupid indecipherable change in share of the vote charts with no figures.

    If a format is good, popular and stood for over 40 years, why change it?

    I think this is so _ _ _ _ _ that we should be able to return it and The Times should have a new edition published…

  36. Totally agree waste of money. The constituency profiles are poor and some of the profiles of the MPs are weird . And inaccuracies… Karen Buck did even better than you may have thought to hang on to her seat, it includes Belgravia and Knightsbridge!!

  37. Knightsbridge and Belgravia ward is in the Cities of London and Westminster constituency not in Westminster North. If it was in Westminster North at the expense of one of the Labour voting wards Karen Buck would probably not be an MP.

  38. You obviously don’t do irony

  39. Dalek: I hope the Times Guide hasn’t printed obvious errors that we pointed out within days of the election on this website such as the Green vote in Birkenhead and the turnout in Lichfield not being 61%.

  40. The photo for the Glasgow South MP in 2010 was actually Tory MP Nadhim Zahawi who therefore appeared twice in the book.

  41. The Lib Dems did used to do well here they gained a seat in a by-election in the old Mayfield ward which is in the North of Farnborough from Labour. They held that ward for years until recently when they redone the boundaries the new Cherry Wood ward which is where most of Mayfield lies in back to being a Labour ward I think. Farnborough is not particularly a dump it has kind of a Hampshire equivalent of Borehamwood in Hertfordshire quite a well healed area overall but does have significant area of LCC/GLC overspill.

  42. Yes I know that Pepperminttea (!!!). I was pointing out that the entry for Westminster North (better spell it out) in the new Times Guide to the House of Commons had got the seat description wrong.

  43. The Times Guide to THe House of Commons 2015 – I think that it is impossible to provide such brief descriptions of each constituency. Many of the Scottish ones have not been updated since 2010, still describing some places as safe Labour seats.

  44. Leave Remain
    London 1,265,676 1,936,596
    Eastern 1,609,565 1,363,765
    North East 609,776 562,808
    North West 1,711,988 1,530,440
    South East 2,179,897 2,160,737
    South West 1,709,676 1,102,986
    East Midlands 1,309,877 925,342
    West Midlands 1,298,878 1,158,064
    Yorkshire & H’ 1,409,766 1,019,160
    Scotland 1,046,549 1,943,574
    Wales 698,786 889,708
    N’ Ireland 326,667 583,925

    Total 15,177,104 15,177,105

  45. London
    Leave 1,265,676 / Remain 1,936,596

    Eastern
    Leave 1,609,565 / Remain 1,363,765

    North East
    Leave 609,776 / Remain 562,808

    North West
    Leave 1,711,988 / Remain 1,530,440

    South East
    Leave 2,179,897 / Remain 2,160,737

    South West
    Leave 1,709,676 / Remain 1,102,986

    East Midlands
    Leave 1,309,877 / Remain 925,342

    West Midlands
    Leave 1,298,878 / Remain 1,158,064

    Yorkshire & Humberside
    Leave 1,409,766 / Remain 1,019,160

    Scotland
    Leave 1,046,549 / Remain 1,943,574

    Wales
    Leave 698,786 / Remain 889,708

    Northern Ireland
    Leave 326,667 / Remain 583,925

    UK
    Leave 15,177,104 / Remain 15,177,105

  46. On a kind-of-related note, if it is that close, how do the mechanics of a recount work? Presumably you’d have to wait for each individual district to declare, and then they’d all have to recount?

  47. Recounts can only take place at voting area level. See the Electoral Commission guidance here – http://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/196258/EU-Ref-Part-E-Verification-and-counting-of-the-votes.pdf

    It does suggest that if the result was known to be close across the country local recounts could be suggested at the appropriate point, but it would be up to the local counting officer to decide whether the request was reasonable or not.

  48. “Scotland Leave 1,046,549 / Remain 1,943,574”

    Polls last week (I think the Guardian) showed a very strong Leave sentiment in Scotland!

  49. @Antochian

    No they didn’t say that exactly, just that there is a lot of latent eurosceptism in attitudes in Scotland, whether it manifests itself in this referendum is another matter.

    I don’t pretend for a minute that all of Scotland is like Edinburgh and that everybody is enthusiastic pro EU academics like my Dad but I think the circumstances of unanimous SNP backing, the toxicity of people like Galloway, Grayling,Farage, Johnson and David Coburn MEP especially to SNP voters and the invisibility of the leave campaign in Scotland being led by has beens such Nigel Griffiths, Brian Monteith and Jim sillars will result in a 2 to 1 Scottish remain vote by default.

    http://whatukthinks.org/eu/is-scotland-really-keen-on-the-eu/

  50. Dalek’s figures mostly look plausible, and the Scotland figures are in line with the most recent polling. However, the overall balance of polling evidence is for a “remain” lead by around 53:47, and if that it borne out, I’d expect “remain” to have leads in a few English regions outside London – probably the South-East and the North-West.

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