Blackburn

2015 Result:
Conservative: 12002 (27.3%)
Labour: 24762 (56.3%)
Lib Dem: 955 (2.2%)
UKIP: 6280 (14.3%)
MAJORITY: 12760 (29%)

Category: Very safe Labour seat

Geography: North West, Lancashire. Part of the Blackburn with Darwen council area.

Main population centres: Blackburn.

Profile: A former centre of the textile industry now fallen on harder times. Blackburn is a mix of deprived inner-city wards dominated by Muslim voters, white working class areas and Conservative voting suburbs. According to the 2001 census around a quarter of the population is Muslim.

Politics: A safe Labour seat, represented by the party since its recreation in 1950. It has had only three MPs since 1950, being previously represented by cabinet minister Barbara Castle and then her former political advisor Jack Straw, who in time also rose to cabinet rank. Several far-right candidates from the BNP and splinter group the English First Party have won seats on Blackburn and Darwen Council in the past and in 2005 the BNP retained their deposit here.


Current MP
KATE HOLLERN (Labour) Born Dumbarton. Blackburn councillor since 1995, Leader of Blackburn council. First elected as MP for Blackburn in 2015.
Past Results
2010
Con: 11895 (26%)
Lab: 21751 (48%)
LDem: 6918 (15%)
BNP: 2158 (5%)
Oth: 2777 (6%)
MAJ: 9856 (22%)
2005*
Con: 9553 (23%)
Lab: 17562 (42%)
LDem: 8608 (21%)
BNP: 2263 (5%)
Oth: 3819 (9%)
MAJ: 8009 (19%)
2001
Con: 12559 (31%)
Lab: 21808 (54%)
LDem: 3264 (8%)
UKIP: 1185 (3%)
Oth: 1668 (4%)
MAJ: 9249 (23%)
1997
Con: 11690 (25%)
Lab: 26141 (55%)
LDem: 4990 (11%)
Oth: 2784 (6%)
MAJ: 14451 (30%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

Demographics
2015 Candidates
BOB EASTWOOD (Conservative) Educated at St Marys Roman Catholic Grammar School and Lancaster University. Retired police chief superintendent.
KATE HOLLERN (Labour) Born Dumbarton. Blackburn councillor since 1995, Leader of Blackburn council.
GORDON LISHMAN (Liberal Democrat) Born 1947. Educated at Manchester University. Former Director General of Age Concern. Contested Bradford North F1975, O1974, Pendle 1983, 1987 for the Liberal party. Awarded the CBE in 2006 for services for older people.
DAYLE TAYLOR (UKIP) Educated at Chester University. Student.
Links
Comments - 73 Responses on “Blackburn”
  1. I think the fact Jack Straw has retired is partly responsible for there being only four candidates this time around-four candidates is the lowest number of candidates nominated in Blackburn in a general election for 28 years.

  2. I wonder how many other seats of the 650 being contested in the United Kingdom, have not one Candidate who is prepared to list their home address, and also does not currently live in the Constituency that they profess to want to represent !!!

  3. Labour Hold. 9,000 majority.

  4. Yes, BBC North West Tonight had this is as their main story last night. His uncle is the Council leader. Neither could be found for a comment.

  5. Jack Straw has apparently been denied a Peerage due to the revelations in the documentary. Likewise, Rifkind I presume.

  6. There’s perhaps a longer-running story here also

  7. The substantial swing to Labour at this year’s election means that this is becoming one of Labour’s safest seats.

    Can somebody explain why this seat is so much safer than next-door Hyndburn, which is also very much a working-class seat?

  8. it’s more urban, & does it also have a larger non-white vote? Though l know there is a substantial non-white vote in Hyndburn too. Hyndburn certainly has some rural areas, but this constituency is almost devoid of them.

  9. Census 2011

    White

    Hyndburn 87.5%
    Blackburn 59.3%

    In particular

    Asians

    Blackburn 37.5%
    Hyndburn 11.5%

  10. Demoograpically, what interactions are there here between age group and ethnic group.?

    What is in my mind is that many Asians were imported into this area in the 1960s to work in the mills, which have subsequently closed.

    Two other points.

    One. Has anybody else noticed the 2..2% LibDem vote?. This was incredibly low, particuarly given the vast expereince of the LibDem candidate.

    Secondly, what happened about the Labour council candidate who was arrested on electoral fraud allegations? Was there a trial and if so what was the result?

  11. I have just posted on the Canterbury thread about Law Commission suggestions concern updating of Electoral Law.

    The Law Commission is suggestiong that Returning Officers should has discretion about “selfies” in polling stations. Given what is happening at present, I find this absolutely incredible.

    Previous comments on the thread for this seat, and some others, suggest thatthe police and returning officers are not treating vii#olations of electoral law with anything like sufficient seriousness.

    We absolutely must not have any addtional means by which community leaders can identify how people cast their votes, either postally or in person.

    It is absolutely vital that it should be aginst the law to photograph or otherwise reproduce a ballot paper, either blank or completed, and that violations of this law should be prosecuted save in very exceptional circumstances

  12. Given tht people are considering the possibility of legal action concerning excess expenditure in South Thanet, is it still in time to bring prosecutions if there is evidence of electoral fraud in this seat, as ws suggested in a blog around the time of the General lection?

  13. Barbara Castle had some quite close fights here – in 1970 her majority was less than 3000. Interesting that it has become pretty well a no hope seat for the Tories.

  14. I do not have evidence that this is the case (other than past posts on this thread which I have read), but if somebody, or some people, are stuffing the ballot boxes with Labour postal votes it is not at all surprising that the Labour majority should be inflated.

    Other people posting on this site have suggested that there has been electoral fraud in this seat. They should give evidence to the police who MUST investigate, and if appropriate prosecute, if they are to have any integrity.

  15. “Other people posting on this site have suggested that there has been electoral fraud in this seat. They should give evidence to the police who MUST investigate, and if appropriate prosecute, if they are to have any integrity.”

    Runnymede merely linked a newspaper article regarding a local council candidate here in April. I suppose you or he could post the Police a copy of the article in question, but as I read it they are already fully aware of this, as it says they interviewed him for many hours.

  16. LAB easily held a byelection in Higher Croft tonight. Unfortunately their candidate was ineligible so there will likely have to be a repeat of the byelection.

    FWIW –

    Lab 59.6 (-10.4)
    UKIP 22.6 (from zero)
    CON 17.8 (-12.2)

  17. Why was the candidate ineligible?

  18. Something to do with his job I believe, maybe he was employed by the council in some form (which they really should have known beforehand but there we go)

  19. Yes, ineligible nomination due to the Labour candidate’s job being publicly funded by Blackburn with Darwen Council – so the result has been declared void. He doesn’t need to be disqualified as he wasn’t returned, plus the ERO had the ineligibility reported to them before polls closed.

    Incidentally, I read elsewhere that the split was more Labour 40% v UKIP 30% on the day, so I assume either that that’s normal here and that Labour have eg 80%+ of the postal vote, or that the attack in London caused an increase in the UKIP vote yesterday.

    From memory it’s a ward that the BNP came 2nd in around a decade ago, so I assume it’s a WWC part of Blackburn council.

  20. ”Yes, ineligible nomination due to the Labour candidate’s job being publicly funded by Blackburn with Darwen Council – so the result has been declared void.”

    Why did nobody (especially Blackburn and Darwen Labour) notice this before tonight? This is a pretty bad c*ck up and not fair on the residents of this ward.

  21. Pepp – councils never check the eligibility of a Candidate or Agent. (Onus being on them who sign the declarations)

    They merely check the Electoral Numbers of the 10 nominees who sign the papers.

  22. The Labour group should have checked before selecting him

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