Boston & Skegness

2015 Result:
Conservative: 18981 (43.8%)
Labour: 7142 (16.5%)
Lib Dem: 1015 (2.3%)
BNP: 119 (0.3%)
Green: 800 (1.8%)
UKIP: 14645 (33.8%)
Independent: 170 (0.4%)
Others: 467 (1.1%)
MAJORITY: 4336 (10%)

Category: Safe Conservative seat

Geography: East Midlands, Lincolnshire.. Includes the whole of the Boston council area and the southern part of East Lindsey.

Main population centres: Boston, Skegness, Wainfleet All Saints, Burgh le Marsh, Ingoldmells, Kirton.

Profile: A largely rural seat in the South Lincolnshire fens, north of the Wash. Boston was a Hanseatic port in the Middle Ages and a hotbed of religious dissent, the pilgrim fathers originally attempted to depart from here, and Boston Massachusetts is named for the town. The modernised port today remains a major local employer and Boston is the major population centre in the seat. Elsewhere agriculture and tourism dominate. Skegness was a small fishing village and port until the 19th century, but boomed as a Victorian holiday resort and remains a popular seaside town retirement location. Ingoldmells to the north of Skegness is the site of the first Butlins holiday camp and the Fantasy Island amusement park. Other towns and villages in the constituency include Burgh le Marsh and Wainfleet All Saints, site of Batemans Brewery.

Politics: The seat has been held by the Conservatives since its creation in 1997, and the predecessor seats since before the Second World War. However in good years for Labour they can run the Conservatives very close - in 1997 and 2001 the Conservative majority was reduced to three figures. This is consistently one of UKIP`s strongest seats in the country, they received 9.6% of the vote here in 2005, 9.5% of the vote in 2010 and in 2015 won a third of the vote, their highest share of any seat other than Douglas Carswell`s Clacton. At a local level Boston council was controlled for four years from 2007-2011 by the Boston Bypass Independents - a single issue campaign that won the local elections from nowhere and was almost wiped out at the following election four years later..

Current MP
MATT WARMAN (Conservative) Former journalist. First elected as MP for Boston & Skegness in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 21325 (49%)
Lab: 8899 (21%)
LDem: 6371 (15%)
UKIP: 4081 (9%)
Oth: 2449 (6%)
MAJ: 12426 (29%)
Con: 19329 (46%)
Lab: 13422 (32%)
LDem: 3649 (9%)
UKIP: 4024 (10%)
Oth: 1445 (3%)
MAJ: 5907 (14%)
Con: 17298 (43%)
Lab: 16783 (42%)
LDem: 4994 (12%)
UKIP: 717 (2%)
Oth: 521 (1%)
MAJ: 515 (1%)
Con: 19750 (42%)
Lab: 19103 (41%)
LDem: 7721 (17%)
MAJ: 647 (1%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
MATT WARMAN (Conservative) Journalist.
PAUL KENNY (Labour) Boston councillor.
DAVID WATTS (Liberal Democrat) Born 1966, Batley. Educated at Huddersfield Polytechnic. Lecturer and qualified solicitor. Broxtowe councillor since 1999. Contested Broxtowe 2005, 2010, Newark by-election 2014.
ROBIN HUNTER-CLARKE (UKIP) Born Boston. Educated at Skegness Grammar School and Chester University. Lincolnshire councillor since 2013.
VICTORIA PERCIVAL (Green) Educated at Kitwood Girls school. Runs a small business.
ROBERT WEST (BNP) Born 1955. Former army officer and teacher, now clergyman in his own church. Former South Holland councillor for the Conservative party. Contested East Midlands 2009, 2014 European elections, Norwich North by-election 2009, Lincoln 2010.
CHRIS PAIN (Independence from Europe) Businessman. Lincolnshire councillor since 2013, originally elected as UKIP.Contested Louth and Horncastle 2005, Boston and Skegness 2010 for UKIP, East Midlands 2014 European Election for An Independence From Europe.
LYN LUXTON (Pilgrim) Designer.
PETER JOHNSON (no description)
Comments - 679 Responses on “Boston & Skegness”
  1. Thanks Myles.

    I predicted reasonable showings for Luxton and Pain because I suspect they will have their own personal followings. Luxton is I believe prominent locally, as is Pain, having for a long time been a well-known UKIP councillor in the area, and I believe he will carry some support over with him albeit under the An Independence From Europe banner. And yes you’re right about Labour- at least with Paul Kenny as their candidate for a third time they surely couldn’t collapse all the way back again?

  2. The Results

    Thanks for bringing the discussion back to a psychological debate. I largely agree with your views and I think that your prediction is entirely plausible.

    I am not sure if Luxton is well known, but you are completely right that Pain should have good showing. I don’t think he’ll keep his deposit in such a tight race but will certainly poll between 2-4%.

    As for the Labour, I am not suggesting that they will collapse as such but I do expect them to do worse than last time. The national picture would suggest that they should increase their vote share, but I think in reality they finished the seat (competitively speaking).
    Basically, they are down to their core vote. They have done horribly in recent local elections.

    In addition, in voting terms Kenny has proved a poor candidate in the past even though he does have a small following locally.

    The interesting thing about the recent Ashcroft Poll is that the Conservatives were only ahead due to the re-allocation of the don’t knows, so basically either there is a small Conservative lead or a small UKIP lead. Either way, UKIP is doing extremely well in what should be a seat with a (reduced) Conservative majority of around 6,000 to 7,000 on a uniform national swing.

    As for the figures cited by Deepthroat, I think most of the prediction sites are totally way off when it comes to this seat. The problem is that national swing is an extremely poor indicator of the likely outcome of Con/Ukip seats, particularly here where the issue of immigration looms large.

  3. Correction – I meant psephological debate!

  4. Thanks once again Myles. Am I right in saying this is your seat?

    You are quite right that prediction websites aren’t going to be able to call this one because of UKIP’s above-average level of support compared to the national situation.

    Interesting also to hear that the Labour candidate does have some kind of support but perhaps given the demography of the area the slide in Labour’s fortunes in the last few years here isn’t a complete surprise.

    I suspected that Chris Pain would be capable of polling at least 1000 votes because of his personal vote, which has no doubt helped him for so long as a councillor locally, even when he was still in UKIP.

    And just to conclude, I DID predict 15% here for Labour, while I think you said Myles you think they can manage 16-17%, so we’re not actually too far away on that score either I don’t think.

  5. And I will gladly admit I am not local, but I do take an interest in this seat because I find this contest particularly fascinating.

  6. The Results

    Thanks again. I do find your analysis interesting and I think it is on the mark.

    I was born in the area so know it well. I was also a borough councillor a few years ago.

    That said, I don’t think you have to be local to realise that this is going to be a really interesting contest. It is clearly UKIP’s second best prospect after Clacton, demographically speaking. This was always on the cards, particularly given UKIP’s third place result in 2005.

    I think we basically agree on the numbers for Labour. It will be interesting to see which way Labour supporters go in such a close contest.

    As I have said, the problem is that the Parliamentary seat looks safe even though the constituency is pretty diverse on a ward by ward basis.

    Just to pick an example, the town ward of Fenside used to be a solid Labour seat. Then it was won in 2007 by the Bypass Independents. Since then, Fensiders have elected a single BNP councillor, two English Democrats and more recently a Ukiper!

    In addition, the Parliamentary seat has consistently returned Conservative MPs, while Boston Borough Council has been in NOC until recent times.

  7. That is all extremely interesting and is exactly the kind of thing that makes this site such an excellent read I think.

    There is plenty of split opposition here- In fact last time Mark Simmonds did not actually get 50% of the vote, this seat is as you say alarmingly deceptive in its Tory majority because of the different support for various others in and around the many wards.

  8. The Results

    You are correct about the split opposition. Again, part of the problem is that the Conservatives and UKIP are basically competing for the same voters. Assuming, UKIP also sweeps up some former Labour and Lib Dem voters, then they will be doing very well indeed.

    I should add that Conservative support is disproportionately concentrated in the rural wards across the constituency and mainly in Boston. Skegness generally leans more towards Labour as it is a hot spot for retirees from Sheffield and Yorkshire who tend to bring their voting tendencies with them.

    That said, Boston is very split as it has always been divided politically.

    The old Boston seat (which existed until 1918) elected two MPs until 1880 and the town generally voted Liberal, whilst the outer countryside voted Tory. A split ticket was therefore often elected.

    The subsequent Holland with Boston seat that existed until 1997 included a lot of the Deepings, which now forms part of South Holland & the Deepings. Once this true blue area left this seat, the current constituency unsurprisingly became highly marginal.

    The former long standing MP, Sir Richard Body is still regarded quite well locally, unlike his successor.

  9. Again lots of very interesting detail there. Thanks Myles.

  10. I think Labour never expected to get close in 1997 or 2001. If they had they might have made an extra special effort to win.

  11. Indeed. Perhaps the Lib Dem vote fell back quite a bit notionally in 1997 and Labour didn’t see that coming. The demographics have not gone in their favour since as we know.

  12. Andy JS

    You would be quite surprised to know it is well known locally that the 2001 Labour candidate, Elaine Bird had a celebratory party the night before the poll as Labour assumed that would take the seat.

    They did work it pretty hard in 1997 and in 2001.

  13. Myles as a local man do you know what the Lib Dem candidates here in the last four elections are up to nowadays? Jim Dodsworth (1997), Duncan Moffatt (2001), Alan Riley (2005) and most recently Philip Smith (2010)?

  14. The Results

    I am afraid I don’t know. The Lib Dems did used to have a limited presence, but their office was located in Skegness. In such a large rural area, where a party locates its office can have an impact on their campaigning priorities.

    In Boston, the last time they won any seat was back in 2003 when several town wards went uncontested. The exception was one of the rural wards, Wyberton, where a well know local, Bob Cory won the seat as a Lib Dem for a number of years. In other words, he had more of a personal than a party vote.

    The Lib Dems are a bit of a non-entity here now and I expect they will struggle to keep their deposit this time around.

  15. Don’t worry Myles. I didn’t really expect anyone to know LOL. And as for their depoist…


  16. “…Chris Pain and Bnp will take a combined 7%..”
    You are living in a world of your own if you believe an odd, isolated anti EU party plus BNP will reach 7%.

    My guess is 1.5% maximum.

  17. anyone not believing islam is a threat deserves far worse. The prescence of anti immigration parties is noteworthy but a party that has warned of muslim grooming and terrorism is factual. Lets hope your daughter or grandaughter is not one of the thousands of victims if pakistani grooming gangs. chris pain 3%. bnp 4%. lets see on may8!

  18. Bnp leaflets received yesterday allegedly in sibsey and boston yesterday so they must have people unlike that wretched woman Luxton whose own colleagues despise her. Chris Pain a half decent councillor too. Local people aware of local issues.

  19. i repeat – anyone believing racist bnp drivel should be certified first. i need no lessons as a jew about islamists but i utterly refuse to condemn all muslims for the actions of a minority of its adherents. muslims in many parts of europe, and in both bradford & stamford hill in britain, are working together to protect their places of worship & institutions from racists including the edl & bnp. interested in what far worse punishment i merit. no level of threat from islamists or grooming gangs can ever justify supporting a [email protected] party.

  20. can we keep the political stuff to a minimum….

    is there any local information about this seat in terms of the general election…

    it seems close, though i think ukip shot themselves in the foot by selecting a child as their candidate.

  21. i agree but i don’t think it becomes a bnp supporter to tell others they are mad/should be certified.

  22. I agree. I am sympathetic to ukip on immigration and all that, but i don’t think this is the right forum for anti-islam rants.

  23. no ranting. fact. switch on sky news. Islamic terror and muslim grooming of young children. Lee Rigby RIP. Islam is an issue in the general election. The electorate want the reassurance they are safe and not under threat of being bombed in a shopping centre. The BNP will continue to csmpaign on this issue as it is of paramount importance. Ukip stay silent on this. The voters like policies aimed at protecting them. women and gays should be respected and given equality. Islam is not compatible with this aspiration. If you are unhappy with the facts concerning our security as a nation you are in a minority.

  24. When was the last time anyone was bombed in a shopping centre in Britain? In 1996. By the IRA.

  25. do you not watch the news. 48hrs ago 2 islamists convicted who planned to bomb arndale centre. US court in new york. life imprisonment.

  26. 2 BNP candidates have been selected so far: Boston & Skegness and Hornchurch & Upminster.

    In 2010 they fielded 338 candidates.

  27. agree. we are discussing boston though

  28. I agree that Lyn Luxton is hardly likely to have any impact and I think her views on immigration (reference The Boston Standard) will hardly endear her to the local electorate. Basically, she seems to think there isn’t a problem locally.

    I seriously doubt she will retain her deposit. More likely she will get between 1-2% of the vote.

    I would expect Chris Pain to do slightly better, say 4%, or so, but I still think he’ll struggle to retain his deposit also. People vote for parties not personalities.

    I doubt the youth of the UKIP candidate will have any impact whatsoever.

  29. “Islam is an issue in the general election. The electorate want the reassurance they are safe and not under threat of being bombed in a shopping centre.”

    The electorate have never been completely safe from terrorism and never will be. In the 1970s and 1980s Jane would no doubt have been telling us to nuke Ireland to keep us safe from the IRA. Real life doesn’t work like that. It’s no different from rail crashes or air accidents – they will come along now and again no matter how hard you try to minimise them. Scapegoating an entire religion will do us no good whatsoever.

  30. hear hear

  31. or rather read read 🙂

  32. 🙂

    The over-hype about domestic terrorism does seem to contrast with the much calmer way we seemed to handle the atrocities of the 70s, 80s and 90s. I can’t decide whether it’s me looking through rose tinted glasses or the fact that the folk memory of the war was much more present then than now. For those who had been through the blitz the very occasional litter bin bomb perhaps didn’t seem like a big deal.

  33. NB: Before commenting please make sure you are familiar with the Comments Policy. UKPollingReport is a site for non-partisan discussion of polls.

  34. I shouldn’t have risen to the bait but this horseshit can’t be left unanswered.

    I’ve been called many things but it’s the first time I’ve been called a leftist troll. I’m a Tory voter for heavens sake. For Jane Wells that must make everyone left of Hitler a leftist troll.

  35. the above comments by the bnp supporter are clearly racist & i think anthony should snip them. if he deletes mine too, that’s fine by me.’

  36. She only ever posts on Boston and Skegness because its the only constituency with a BNP candidate. Just shows that Jane is only on here to further her agenda, which is not the purpose of this site.

  37. As Peter Hitchens once said, it’s more likely that an eagle is going to drop a tortoise on your head than you’ll die in a terrorist attack.

    If you believed some of the media, you’d never leave your front door, never mind go about your daily life.

    The BNP are finished. Once Griffin was given a platform – enough rope basically – it was all over.

  38. I think someone mentioned Hitler, so really that SHOULD have been the last entry here (on this subject)!

    However I must say that sometimes people need to get a grip and some perspective. (JW)

    I know a descendant of Native American tribe – he said that ‘Indian’ population was reduced from an estimated 12 million in 1590 to around 250,000 in 1900 thru disease and wilful slaughter. To some it represents a vast genocide the most sustained on record.

    Demographic changes are a fact of life and part of human history.

  39. It should also be categorically stated that Lee Rigby’s family told the EDL and BNP to stop using their son’s death for political purposes….I’m sorry to see that is being ignored.

  40. of course the BNP would never respect such wishes.

  41. any news?

  42. Victoria is a very plausible green who is likely to at least retain her deposit. We are longtime labour voters who are going to vote for her;so will quite a few others. The libdem vote should collapse to Victoria’s advantage, with many of their supporters going green this time.Robin has a decent chance here but having spoken to some potential supporters of his, ageism suggests that many of them will stick with the tories. (although in Robin’s favour, Matt Warman comes across as being a bit wet behind the ears too). The tories may have missed a trick by not going for a more experienced candidate.

  43. Election Forecast are predicting this as one of UKIP’s best wins.

  44. SOPN:

    Robin Hunter-Clarke (UKIP)
    Peter Johnson (No Description)
    Paul Kenny (Labour)
    Lyn Luxton (The Pilgrim Party)
    Chris Pain (Independence From Europe)
    Victoria Percival (Green)
    Matt Warman (Conservative)
    David Watts (Liberal Democrats)
    Robert West (BNP)

  45. Greeny… I presume your name is Green… perish the thought that you are a Green.. LoL

    As for ageism. I can’t see how ageism works against a young UKIP candidate and for a young Tory candidate… can someone walk us through that argument

    D.Alex.. is that a win? or a result? or both?

  46. Even if Ukip don’t win in this seat, which I don’t think is doing to happen, they are going to pick up a shed load of local councillors and cement their already established spot as major challengers in the east. Don’t fancy long term Tory prospects post election in the seat regardless of the outcome.

  47. The results of my Straw Phone Poll carried out in this seat in the last few days shows a CON HOLD

  48. As your Margin of Error can be estimated at 9%, I think those estimates are likely to be WRONG.

  49. Paul please stop trying to pass these guesses off as genuine.

    A good proportion of those posting here are people with extensive polling experience who know both how difficult it is to conduct proper phone polls and how much time it takes for even a large polling company to conduct even one.

    Yet here you are posting on multiple threads giving your ‘straw polls’ which the rest of us know are really just guesses.

    So by all means continue to post your figures but be honest what they are as otherwise you just continue to look foolish.

  50. Above comment seconded.

    I cannot understand why the site allows posts of fake polls to remain. Perhaps they are desperate for the traffic. This site is for the discussion of genuine polls.

Leave a Reply

NB: Before commenting please make sure you are familiar with the Comments Policy. UKPollingReport is a site for non-partisan discussion of polls.

You are not currently logged into UKPollingReport. Registration is not compulsory, but is strongly encouraged. Either login here, or register here (commenters who have previously registered on the Constituency Guide section of the site *should* be able to use their existing login)