2015 Result:
Conservative: 22939 (42.8%)
Labour: 9354 (17.5%)
Lib Dem: 11951 (22.3%)
UKIP: 9338 (17.4%)
MAJORITY: 10988 (20.5%)

Category: Very safe Conservative seat

Geography: East Midlands, Leicestershire. Most of the Hinckley and Bosworth council area.

Main population centres: Hinckley, Barwell, Earl Shilton, Market Bosworth, Newbold, Desford.

Profile: The town of Hinckley, and a large part of rural western Leicestershire. There are three towns in the constituency, the large middle class commuter town of Hinckley, the former mining town of Earl Shilton and the tiny market town of Market Bosworth, best known for the pivotal battle that ended the War of the Roses that was fought just to the south of the town. The constituency covers part of the old Leicestershire coalfield, but is now increasingly made up of commuter villages rather than industry.

Politics: Demographic and boundary changes have moved Bosworth into the Conservative column over the decades. Until the 1960s its coal mining tradition made it a Labour seat, but the 1970s it was a marginal Conservative seat and has been held by them ever since, despite Labour coming very close to taking the seat in 1997.

Current MP
DAVID TREDINNICK (Conservative) Born 1950, Worthing. Educated at Eton and Oxford University. Former manager. Contested Cardiff and Penarth 1983. First elected as MP for Bosworth in 1987. PPS to Wyn Roberts 1991-1994. Resigned from office and suspended from the Commons for 20 days as a result of the Cash for Questions scandal, Tredinnick is now best known for his support for homeopathy and other alternative medicine.
Past Results
Con: 23132 (43%)
Lab: 8674 (16%)
LDem: 18100 (33%)
BNP: 2458 (5%)
Oth: 1910 (4%)
MAJ: 5032 (9%)
Con: 20212 (43%)
Lab: 14893 (31%)
LDem: 10528 (22%)
UKIP: 1866 (4%)
MAJ: 5319 (11%)
Con: 20030 (44%)
Lab: 17750 (39%)
LDem: 7326 (16%)
MAJ: 2280 (5%)
Con: 21189 (41%)
Lab: 20162 (39%)
LDem: 9281 (18%)
MAJ: 1027 (2%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
DAVID TREDINNICK (Conservative) See above.
MICHAEL MULLANEY (Liberal Democrat) Contested Bosworth 2010.
Comments - 129 Responses on “Bosworth”
  1. I feel a bit silly now TBH. I just hope Mr. Wells hasn’t seen this page…

  2. It’s Tredinnick again:

    He was reselected on 15th November.

  3. I still cannot believe how low the Tory vote is here. It seems incredible to me still that a seat like this that once produced five figure majorities in the 80s and early 90s is now something of a semimarginal between them and the Lib Dems.

  4. ‘It seems incredible to me still that a seat like this that once produced five figure majorities in the 80s and early 90s is now something of a semimarginal between them and the Lib Dems.’

    It’s not

    The Lib Dems did exceptionally well in 2010 – but it really was the exception as opposed to the rule – as results prior to 2010 show

    I imagine they selected a good, local candidate, who ran a strong campaign, and Tredinnick has always seemed a bit of an oddball as it were

    And I imagine his opponent reminded voters that Treddinock was one of the original ‘cash for questions’ sinners

    Whilst I very much suspect it’s a one off it will be interesting if the Lib Dems go with the same candidate in 2015

  5. It was a David Penhaligon-like result for Michael Mullaney here in 2010. I think he has been reselected by the Lib Dems for 2015.

  6. I lived in this seat for 3 months in the 1980’s, and even then, Labour didn’t do all that well – indeed, their national results in 97 and 01 were both better than local indications might suggest. Labour used to hold the two rather grim townships of Barwell and Earl Shilton, but have lost those in recent years, and its been a long time since they held any wards in Hinckley.

    The LibDems had started to win some Hinckley wards from the Tories then, but whether they can withstand the national decline now is questionable

  7. They could do here,Merseymike,if they try (in 2010, the Lib Dems’ lost seats were lost only narrowly,for the most part), and UKIP will do particularly well in most of the East Midlands; it is damaging the Conservative vote considerably as local election results have shown, not to mention the Corby by-election of 2012.

    I know there is only an outside chance of a Lib Dem gain or narrow Conservative hold, but with rising support for minor parties, 2015 will not be an easy year for election predictions. It could look something like this,just possibly:

    Lib Dem 34
    Con 32
    Lab 22
    UKIP 10
    Others 2

    Very unlikely, but not impossible either.

  8. If the Labour vote went up 6%, it would be overwhelmingly be at the expense of the LDs. The only way the latter can win is by squeezing the Labour vote further. This is not totally out of the question in a very few constituencies, even at the moment, but it is very unlikely.

  9. I suppose so, but as I said, the 2015 general election will be the most difficult election to predict in many places in many decades. Also, I sometimes bring tactical voting into my predictions, and I know that a Conservative majority government will be even worse (if that is possible) than the coalition government we have now, so tactical voting in a few select areas may just about favour the Lib Dems if Labour cannot realistically win the area in question, which is the case in most of Cornwall,for example.

  10. Cornwall doesn’t really have tactical voting in the sense we know it; apart from in the towns of Camborne, Redruth, Falmouth & Penzance, Labour has never really amounted to much in the county, and voters are more naturally inclined to the LDs than to Labour. This is particularly true of the N Cornwall constituency but also applies to SE Cornwall & St Austell/Newquay, almost in their entireties.

  11. CON 36
    LD 23
    LAB 22
    UKIP 12
    GRN 4
    OTH 3

  12. Heres a question for the history mavens…..has any MP ever been removed (otherwise than by voters) on the grounds of insanity?

  13. Tredinnick has popped up again in defence of astrology. Between this and Jeremy Hunt’s enthusiasm for homeopathy, what is it with Tory MPs and science?

  14. I wish this MP was no longer in the House. Sorry to be blunt, but I’ve had a few drinks. His views on astrology are embarrassing.

  15. I’m embarrassed to say I’d not known of this MP. I really should have – I can’t really believe I’m breaking my rule about starting political debates here on UKPR, because I can’t believe any of my fellow commentators here actually go for this stuff.

    I can’t quite process that an MP actually believes this. An MP on the health + science and technology committees! I guess I was naive to believe such anti-science legislators could only be on science committees in the United States.

  16. I don’t consider myself so knee-jerk as to shout “de-select!!1” everytime some MP thinks something objectionable, but reading on him one does get the impression his judgement is questionable. If his Conservative association can’t grow some courage and ‘convince’ him his 37 years of service is quite enough now, then really its members have nothing to be proud of.

  17. If the Eton/Oxford route into politics has one advantage it should be that the MPs it produces are well-educated and reasonably intelligent. That appears to be a general rule rather than a universal truth.

  18. I totally agree. If his time ever was, it is certainly gone now.

  19. Current prediction for 2015-
    Tredinnick (Conservative)- 39%
    Mullaney (Liberal Democrat)- 27%
    Labour- 21%
    UKIP- 13%

    I think the Lib Dem vote will hold up fairly well here. They seem to have kept a good deal of their vote locally. With Michael Mullaney as their candidate again, I think they’ve got a good chance of staying near David Tredinnick here, and though Labour should increase, it probably won’t be huge.

  20. I think I’d put UKIP nearer 10 and add a bit to the others but your basic points seem pretty fair.

  21. Thanks. All the evidence I think would appear to point to the Lib Dems holding second place still some way ahead of Labour, they’ve got that strength at a local level whereas Labour still haven’t recovered a lot I don’t think.

    This seat will continue to elect a Conservative MP, possibly with under 40% of the vote for the foreseeable future, as long as the opposition remains as unusually split as it is.

  22. The Lib Dems might take this seat one day. This and Ashfield look like being their best long-term bets in the East Midlands, with the candidates in both seats looking like being in it for the long haul, David Penhaligon-style.

  23. Conservative Hold. 9,000 majority. Labour 2nd.

  24. This absolutely shouldn’t be a conservative hold.

    People i’ve spoken to (and I live in the constituency) say they will vote tactically to get Tredinnick out. UKIP supporters voting Lib Dem, labour voters voting Lib Dem as well as the Lib Dems apparently running a particularly strong campaign in the area.

    On the eve of the election I’m going to call a Lib Dem win in Bosworth.

  25. Hmmm.. one of the surprises of the day? MP qualifies as Complete Loon of the House… and constituents know it..

    Surprised Tories served him up again while ditching Yeo et al. Shows a certain contempt for the constituents..

  26. Tredinnick’s views on astrology and homeopathy were known before the 2010 election, when a “Science” candidate stood against him.

    While sometimes an electorate will go along with an eccentric MP and then turn against him/her when it goes too far (Lembik Opik), I’m not sure that Tredinnick’s behavior has gotten worse the past 5 years.

    He also has the advantage that the 2nd place finishers from 2010, despite fielding a strong candidate, are doing very poorly nationally, and likely to lose many voters to Labour, even in this constituency.

    It’s very hard to see a shock loss here — it’s unfortunately more likely Tredinnick will increase his majority, though on a lower vote share.

  27. Despite the Lib Dems dropping by 11% here, which was actually below the national average, the Tories’ result wasn’t exactly overwhelming- Tredinnick only increased his own vote share by a minute 0.2%. I get the feeling Michael Mullaney is in it for the long haul here however being a prominent councillor locally, so if there’s a candidate for a shock result anywhere in 2020 for the Lib Dems against the grain, this could be it, as I still wouldn’t call the Tories safe here by any means, as the figures are deceptive…

  28. I suppose if people keep predicting a shock Lib Dem win here at every election it might eventually happen at some point in the next 100 years.

  29. HA HA!

  30. Hopefully Trendenick will be retired at some point in the near future. A new candidate would do much better.

  31. The thing about this seat is is that it is actually quite interesting, and all the more so when you actually begin to read quite a bit into the initial figures for the latest result here- Michael Mullaney the Lib Dem candidate is a local man and a leading councillor in the area, and increased his party’s vote share by 11.7% in 2010 seemingly out of nowhere at the time. This time he ‘only’ declined by 11%, which is quite significant in the long-term I feel. He could win this one day, but it might take him until 2025.

  32. Oh and Shaun’s actual prediction wasn’t too far off as well.

  33. The Lib Dems did indeed do relatively well here in comparison to the rest of the country. However it was almost certainly due to their candidate as opposed to any specific love for the Lib Dems in the area. Should he fail to stand for the party at future general elections expect the Lib Dems to fall back a long way Bosworth. However I suspect he may be in it for the long haul. Should he ever win the seat he may be able to turn Bosworth into a reliable Lib Dem seat like Westmoreland and Lonsdale or Yeovil (1983-2015).

    The best strategy the Tories could pursue to stop any Lib Dem insurgence here would be to force Tredinnick to retire in 2020 as the Lib Dems are probably too far behind to take the seat at that election and I doubt Tredinnick has much of a personal vote (he may in fact have a negative one). Then select a strong, likeable local candidate to replace him. This person would also benefit from first time incumbency in 2025. Of course if Mullaney stops running it probably doesn’t really matter what the Tories do with regards to this seat.

  34. Definitely agreed about the relatively good showing here being down to the strong candidate. Another seat where the Lib Dems had at one point been tipped to hold up well relative to the national picture was The Cotswolds, and there Paul Hodgkinson’s vote held up well and IMHO did well to stay in a clear second place miles ahead of UKIP. This phenomenon appears to exist where the Lib Dems haven’t collapsed locally anywhere near like they have in most places and for whatever reason have managed to regain some kind of popularity in hard times- These two seats are I reckon good examples of ones they’ve never held, which in a way makes such solid performances all the more commendable. I had heard a few months prior to the election that The Cotswolds could be a shock result, but given the terrible result nationally for the Lib Dems all they could manage to do was at least not get anywhere near dropping by the 15% average- I think they shouldn’t give up on that seat in the long-term even though they are currently miles behind, call me barking mad.

    I am also certainly agreed on the point that Michael Mullaney could get Bosworth in the near future if he carries on standing- He has very good experience in local government and would translate that well to Westminster I think. He began by standing in wards in Derby and Ashfield I believe before he moved to the area, so his personal reputation as a grass-roots campaigner may be second-to-none. These early contests will have only given him more experience before being elected a councillor in Hinckley and Bosworth, as well as Leicestershire County Council. I would now be amazed if he wasn’t the MP here by 2025 at least…

  35. “Should he ever win the seat he may be able to turn Bosworth into a reliable Lib Dem seat like Westmoreland and Lonsdale or Yeovil (1983-2015).”

    What on earth is this statement based on?

  36. @The Results. About the Cotswolds the Lib Dems did indeed do very well locally in Cirencester, winning every single council seat covering the town! Unfortunately for the Lib Dems Cirencester is nowhere near big enough for its own seat so it has to be paired with the rural, heavily Tory Cotswolds which will be very difficult for the Lib Dems to overcome in the future.

    The Lib Dems do indeed have local strength in Bosworth. They held Hinckley and Bosworth council against the tide in 2011 but they lost control to the Tories this year. However in other parts of the country where the Lib Dems have local strength it was not enough to stop them bombing in the corresponding parliamentary seat. I suspect if Mullaney had not been the Lib Dem’s candidate their vote share would be in the low teens and there would be no talk whatsoever of a potential future Lib Dem surge in Bosworth.

  37. Thanks. That’s pretty much what I suspected RE The Cotswolds TBH.

    I definitely agree once again that Mullaney’s presence as candidate here is having a big effect on the position of the Lib Dems in this seat. They really do need him to stand again in 2020 at least, because unlike in Ashfield here they do still have a chance of getting in in the long-run because they will still be able to count on the same local man plugging away election after election. Now that Jason Zadrozny is an Independent in his ward, the loss of his own huge personal vote notwithstanding the Lib Dems locally will probably no longer fare anywhere near as well in the future without him leading the local party, as I would wager he was by and large responsible for their incredible rise in the first place. Here it’s a bit different as I’ve said- Michael Mullaney can stay in the area as long as he wants I would imagine and probably has a plan in place to keep fighting this Stuart Mole in Chelmsford style, until the seat finally falls to him- I think it will eventually, but might take a long time to happen given the national state of his own party being a big hindrance.

  38. ”ANDY JS
    “Should he ever win the seat he may be able to turn Bosworth into a reliable Lib Dem seat like Westmoreland and Lonsdale or Yeovil (1983-2015).”
    What on earth is this statement based on?”

    I think it isn’t entirely inconceivable TBH. He fits the bill IMHO- Local, young, committed and very likeable as well I think. So it’s possible it could happen with time.

  39. The LD’s (relatively) good result here was down to Tredinnick’s poor standing. It looks like a section of voters who were content with the coalition but not Tory core plumped for Mullaney. It’s indisputable that the LDs local popularity here saved them from collapse here. I do think a stronger Tory candidate should be fine in 2020.

  40. So it is seemingly a combination of a lack of any kind of personal vote for David Treddinick himself and the local popularity of Michael Mullaney that accounts for the current situation we have in place here. It is possible a new Tory MP might see off the Lib Dems here- maybe someone who has solid campaigning skills could fight this like a marginal for the Tories and get it to be much safer than it is, and perhaps should be.

  41. I will also add that the Labour vote not going up by very much here would appear to suggest there is still continued tactical voting for Michael Mullaney, perhaps partly accounting for the Lib Dem’s better-than-average decrease here.

  42. I know the results was looking at strong LD performances. I did some research and Bosworth, Cambrigshire South East, Cotswold, Dorset West, Guildford, Hampshire North East, Maidstone, Mole Valley, Newbury, Wiltshire North were the only seats not recently LD held that the LD’s retained 2nd place. Amazingly, they retained zero of the 2nd places in labour seats they achieved in 2010. Zero!

  43. That’s interesting. Actually TBH South East Cambridgeshire really does stand out quite a bit given how remarkably well the Lib Dems have continued to progress in vote share there over the years, so much so to the extent that they still find themselves in a very good position compared to the national average since 1997, where they are only 4.9% behind their result in this particular seat that year- The national average for the Lib Dems being behind their 1997 vote share is 8.9% down on that year, so they’ve held up very well in comparison, perhaps with the continuing Cambridge effect that has also impacted on neighbouring South Cambridgeshire as well as Huntingdon to a lesser extent.

    We know Bosworth is all because of the extremely strong candidate the Lib Dems are very lucky to have keeping the ship sailing for them locally in this seat. Maidstone is because Ann Widdecombe stood down and the Lib Dems came from nowhere in 2010 to challenge for the seat and have held up very well there as a direct result of that at this election, having gained at a local level, which nonetheless is quite impressive. The Cotswolds we know is because of local strength in confined areas, Dorset West had long been marginal so was bound to see the Lib Dems at least retain second place and Guildford had been extremely narrowly lost by the Lib Dems in 2005 and they weren’t massively far away in marginal terms in 2010, so for a seat they have once held it has to be said it’s not surprising they’re still second I don’t think. Newbury is a slightly similar situation, i.e. the Lib Dems at least have a history of holding that seat for some 12 years, albeit the long-lasting by-election effect of David Rendel’s first win from days gone by has finally worn off I think it’s fair to say.

    The ones that surprise me in the list of seats you’ve researched however are North East Hampshire, Mole Valley, and North Wiltshire. In NE Hampshire I believe the Lib Dems did well just to retain second place, but UKIP didn’t do very well because of issues with their candidate I think. Mole Valley is also a fairly interesting one given on the face of it you would expect UKIP to take second place, but this is Surrey don’t forget. North Wiltshire is an interesting one too as the Lib Dems have never won that seat in the past either- but again UKIP didn’t set the world alight in this part of the world and may have something to do with why the Lib Dems were able to stay second despite a 20.6% decrease in vote share. So a few of these seats which are in Southern England might have actually seen the Lib Dems clinging onto their very core vote which was still enough to retain seemingly unlikely looking second places in seats you wouldn’t necessarily expect it.

  44. Well Hants NE was candidate based. Guildford, Newbury, Mole Valley, Wilshere North and Dorset West all had very weak LAB and UKIP votes so the LD’s retained 2nd almost by default. Not sure why Cambs SE has been so good for the LD’s maybe university staff or scientists moving in?

  45. I think the Lib Dems have done very well locally in SE Cambridgeshire down the years and have probably built up such a base they were only going to fall so far this time. I think it’s almost certain that if there had been another UKIP candidate in North East Hampshire UKIP would have easily taken a very distant second place behind the Tories there.

  46. I am not shocked at all by the 2nds in Guildford as they did used to hold the seat and mole valley and the Cambridgeshire seat I think is just because of the lack of a strong alternative..

    With regards to the above conversation re the Cotswolds (I live in the constituency) the is absolutely zero chance of the LDs taking this seat in the next generation.. They do relatively well in Cirencester locally as they did win all the seats but a lot of these were with tiny majorities so it masks the true picture a little and Cirencester is only a small portion of the seat- nowhere near as big as people assume. Places like stow on the wold and chipping campden are monolothically Tory as are places like the coln valley villages and campden vale settlements. When you factor in that the conservatives always win in places like moreton and tetbury too you have more than covered any LD strength in Cirencester.. I think the LDs held on to second firstly because they put up their council group leader and well liked local man for their candidate and because the area is just too affluent for labour or UKIP to ever do well..

    Hope that puts some local context “The Results” on why on the face of it the LDs should be doing well but why they will never win… If the Tories ditched the boring and distant MP me Clifton-brown and replaced him with a local and more active candidate this is one of the few seats they would be able to clear 60% on a good night

  47. I’d call Newbury recently Libdem held (1997-2005) and in fact it’s one of the more interesting of the seats because it’s now in the top ten safest Tory seats.
    There were a lot of Tory held seats in 2010 where a new candidate replaced a long serving MP and their vote went down (eg Congleton, Macclesfield) but this year they recovered well. Was Maidstone the only exception?

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