Birmingham, Northfield

2015 Result:
Conservative: 15164 (35.7%)
Labour: 17673 (41.6%)
Lib Dem: 1349 (3.2%)
Green: 1169 (2.8%)
UKIP: 7106 (16.7%)
MAJORITY: 2509 (5.9%)

Category: Semi-marginal Labour seat

Geography: West Midlands. Part of the Birmingham council area.

Main population centres: Longbridge, Northfield.

Profile: A seat in urban Birmingham, England`s second city. Northfield is at the South-West tip of Birmingham and consists of the wards of Kings Norton, Longbridge, Northfield and Weoley. It is a white working class seat, inextricably linked with the Longbridge car plant which once dominated the local economy. The factory closed in 2005 and has partially been redeveloped for housing and employment, but lower scale of MGs continues here under new ownership. The seat is mostly made up of owner occupied semis and former council properties bought by their owners in the 1980s, though Kings Norton has more council property.

Politics: Birmingham Northfield is a marginal between Labour and the Conservatves, albeit one that leans to Labour and can normally only be won by the Conservatives in their very best years - it was held by the Tories through the 1980s (except from the 1982 by-election caused by the suicide of Jocelyn Cadbury) but only by wafer thin majorities. In 2010 the Labour majority here fell sharply, but not enough to put it into Conservative hands.


Current MP
RICHARD BURDEN (Labour) Born 1954, Liverpool. Educated at Wallasey Technical School Grammar, Bramhall Comprehensive and York University. Former trade union official. First elected as MP for Birmingham Northfielf in 1992. PPS to Jeff Rooker 1997-2001. Chair of the parliamentary Palestian Group and strong critic of Israeli policy. Voted against the government over the Iraq war.
Past Results
2010
Con: 14059 (34%)
Lab: 16841 (40%)
LDem: 6550 (16%)
BNP: 2290 (5%)
Oth: 2074 (5%)
MAJ: 2782 (7%)
2005*
Con: 8965 (29%)
Lab: 15419 (50%)
LDem: 4171 (13%)
BNP: 1278 (4%)
Oth: 1223 (4%)
MAJ: 6454 (21%)
2001
Con: 8730 (30%)
Lab: 16528 (56%)
LDem: 3322 (11%)
UKIP: 550 (2%)
Oth: 404 (1%)
MAJ: 7798 (26%)
1997
Con: 10873 (28%)
Lab: 22316 (57%)
LDem: 4078 (10%)
Oth: 337 (1%)
MAJ: 11443 (29%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

Demographics
2015 Candidates
RACHEL MACLEAN (Conservative) Educated at Oxford University. Ran a family publishing business.
RICHARD BURDEN (Labour) See above.
STEVE HAYNES (Liberal Democrat) Seo consultant.
KEITH ROWE (UKIP) Businessman. Contested West Midlands Police Commissioner by-election 2014.
ANNA MASTERS (Green) Midwife.
Links
Comments - 109 Responses on “Birmingham, Northfield”
  1. For me, the most interesting of those figures is the Lib Dems’ strong performance in Yardley.

    Logic would suggest the parliamentary seat is Jess Phillips’s for as long as she wants it – her no-nonsense style likely being a good fit for the largely WWC electorate, and the Lib Dems’ incessant remoaning being a big problem for them in a general election in a seat like this.

    However, if the Lib Dems keep plugging away then that majority could slip through her fingers…

  2. Staggering how much higher turnout here was in 1997 than in 2001 or 2005; a numerical majority of 11400 slumped to under 8000 while in percentage terms it fell by only 3%

  3. Aside from the recovery of W’ton SW, I consider this to be the top Conservative target in the metropolitan West Midlands.

    3 of the 4 wards were neck and neck at the 2016 locals and Labour only pulled ahead in Longbridge ward. But ongoing housing development in that ward, together with the low BAME electorate for a Brum seat and a skilled working/lower middle class White electorate which makes this a good target for the Conservatives. It was also 60% + Leave.

  4. I think Labour is in real trouble here- a wwc seat where Leave took 62% last year.

  5. Plopwellian Tory

    I think we are of similar mind.

    As I posted yesterday, I suspect the presence of Geoffrey Robinson – or otherwise – might be a factor in Coventry North West.

    I would be supremely ironic if Ian Austin, who has been a stringent critic of Corbyn, were to fall in an anti-Corbyn tide. He was fortunate last time that right of centre vote split 5:4 between the Conservatives and UKIP. He may be less lucky this time.

    In the event of a complete Labour meltdown, Brum Erdington and Walsall South also become possibles.

  6. Oh loads of Corbyn critics will fall. John Woodcock in particular has gone rogue, reasoning that if he is going to go down anyway, he may as well go down fighting for his own beliefs.

  7. We shouldn’t succumb to ramping…..I know the polls look positive-ish but I don’t think they reflect a great love of the Tories. I think the Tories will lose 10-15 seats to the LDs and around 10 to Labour. I think the UKIP unwind and healthiness of the Tories vote will compensate for this, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they ended up with a majority not much greater than they have now and if it was not even an overall majority I wouldn’t be entirely surprised.

  8. Dr Neil Shastri-Hurst (ex army officer) and James Bird (former local councillor) are the two Tories on the shortlist hoping to be selected tonight

  9. Derek “Red Robbo” Robinson has died, aged 90.

    He stood here several times for the Communist Party.

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