Brentford & Isleworth

2015 Result:
Conservative: 24631 (42.9%)
Labour: 25096 (43.8%)
Lib Dem: 2305 (4%)
Green: 2120 (3.7%)
UKIP: 3203 (5.6%)
MAJORITY: 465 (0.8%)

Category: Ultra-marginal Labour seat

Geography: Greater London. Part of the Hounslow council area.

Main population centres: Chiswick, Brentford, Isleworth, Hounslow.

Profile: A long seat that snakes along the north bank of the Thames, opposite Barnes and Kew Gardens. This is a mixed seat that changes as follows the Thames west, from upmarket and now reliably Conservative Chiswick, a mix of residential and office areas, home of the Fullers Brewery and popular with young urban professionals; past Gunnersbury and the council estates around Brentford Towers into the lower quality housing and more mixed areas of Brentford. There are large green spaces here around Osterley Park House and Syon House and Tory areas like Spring Grove, but moving south-west it becomes better for Labour. Isleworth was once considered a Conservative area but there is a far amount of council housing around the sewage works here and, moving westwards into Hounslow a large asian population.

Politics: This is a key marginal between the Conservatives and Labour. It was represented by the Conservatives between 1974 and 1997, latterly by Nirj Deva, later a Conservative MEP. In 1997 and 2001 Labour secured towering five figure majorities here, but it slumped to only 4411 in 2005 before falling to the Conservatives in 2010. In 2015 it was regained by Labour.

Current MP
RUTH CADBURY (Labour) Former local government officer. Hounslow councillor since 1998. Deputy leader of Hounslow council 2010-2012. First elected as MP for Brentford & Isleworth in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 20022 (37%)
Lab: 18064 (34%)
LDem: 12718 (24%)
UKIP: 863 (2%)
Oth: 2098 (4%)
MAJ: 1958 (4%)
Con: 13918 (30%)
Lab: 18329 (40%)
LDem: 10477 (23%)
GRN: 1652 (4%)
Oth: 1641 (4%)
MAJ: 4411 (10%)
Con: 12957 (29%)
Lab: 23275 (52%)
LDem: 5994 (13%)
GRN: 1324 (3%)
Oth: 964 (2%)
MAJ: 10318 (23%)
Con: 17825 (32%)
Lab: 32249 (57%)
LDem: 4613 (8%)
Oth: 1448 (3%)
MAJ: 14424 (26%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
MARY MACLEOD (Conservative) Born 1969. Educated at Glasgow University. Management consultant. Contested Ross, Skye and Inverness West 1997. MP for Brentford and Isleworth 2010 to 2015.
RUTH CADBURY (Labour) Former local government officer. Hounslow councillor since 1998. Deputy leader of Hounslow council 2010-2012.
JOSEPH BOURKE (Liberal Democrat) Chartered accountant. Contested Dagenham and Rainham 2010.
RICHARD HENDRON (UKIP) Barrister and former police officer.
DANIEL GOLDSMITH (Green) IT consultant. Contested Feltham and Heston 2011 by-election.
Comments - 522 Responses on “Brentford & Isleworth”
  1. I should probably elaborate, to avoid confusion.

    Mary Macloed was an advisor at Buck House pre-2010.
    Post-2015 she is an advisor to Mr. Mundell.

    Who knows, perhaps she could emulate fellow Celtic-blooded (ex)Tory MPs Eric Forth and Jacqui Lait in finding a berth in Bromley come the next election (should Bob Stewart and / or Bob Neill decide to retire).

  2. She never struck me as anything special (although did well to only just lose here).

    As for Celtic/Catholic, along with Mensch, McVey, here and South Ribble they were all one-term wonders I doubt we’ll see in the House again, not least because of their age.

    Incidentally, the local press reported last week that McVey now has 5 jobs. Seems she’s put her jobseeking advice to good use. Although I also spotted a complaint has been made to the Parliamentary Committee as her ex-colleague gave her the job representing British Transport Police and she did not seek their advice or approval as an ex-Minister accepting a job post-election.

  3. ‘…she did not seek their advice or approval as an ex-Minister accepting a job post-election’

    I don’t think she was a Minister., was she?
    She was a PPS. Surely you don’t approval if were just at that level? You don’t even have a portfolio.

    ‘As for Celtic/Catholic, along with Mensch, McVey, here and South Ribble they were all one-term wonders I doubt we’ll see in the House again…’

    Well, Louise Mensch and Lorraine Fullbrook chose to stand down, so no I don’t expect to see them back.
    Esther McVey is a different matter. She’s said she wants to get back in. Boundary changes may help her in the Wirral, and she could easily serve two / three more terms if she does get back in 2020.

    The are of course numerous other Tory MPs of Celtic lineage chugging along perfectly happily in the Commons.

  4. ‘She never struck me as anything special (although did well to only just lose here).’

    You think?

    I would have thought Chiswick being wealthier then it’s ever been more than balances out places like Isleworth which have gone the other way, meaning this is one of the London seats which looks as marginal now as it was 20-30 years ago

  5. “I think of all the Tory marginals in London in 1992 this has moved against the Conservatives the least.”

    I’d say Battersea, Putney, Fulham and Kensington are better contenders for that accolade.

    All those are in the West London gentrification / bankerisation block.

    As is the Chiswick part of this constituency but that is countered by the pro Labour demographic trends in Brentford and Isleworth themselves.

  6. A large chunk of Hounslow is in this seat too. It’s likely to be stronger for Labour than Brentford.

  7. This seat is also oversized and should lose at least one ward in the boundary changes. If some of Chiswick moves in with Hammersmith, the Conservatives will be seriously disadvantaged. However if a Isleworth or a Hounslow ward moves out of the seat, then it makes Labour’s job harder.

    I would anticipate challenges to the boundary changes outcome here whatever is decided.

  8. John D – yes, McVey was a Minister. Junior DWP – Disabilities, then Minister of State – Employment. That’s why the Parliamentary Committee criticised the timing of the appointment. I can’t see her being re-selected particularly in Wirral Deeside. She may, of course, seek a seat down South as she did after 2005 for a year.

    Tim J – this seat is only 40% White UK and so any Tory Assoc is doing well to keep it a marginal.

  9. ‘John D – yes, McVey was a Minister’

    Sorry. I should’ve read more carefully rather than skim-reading. I thought you were talking about Macloed.

  10. ‘this seat is only 40% White UK and so any Tory Assoc is doing well to keep it a marginal.’

    I never would have thought that although it does help explain why the Tories put up an Asian candidate as far back as 1992 and held on fairly comfortably

    I only know Chiswick really – and to a lesser extent Brentford, which didn’t seem as bad as I thought it might be

    There were some pretty good pubs near the football ground I remember

  11. I never realised Isleworth had gone downhill, but hey, I’ve only lived in the area for the majority of my nearly 39 years! Isleworth is still what it always was – mostly nice enough with the Ivybridge estate far better than it was in the 80s when it was a borderline no-go area.

    The last boundary review suggested, IIRC, moving Hounslow Heath ward to a new seat created out of breaking up some of the Twickenham seat, which would prove advantageous to the Conservatives, I believe.

    Re: Brentford, the pubs on the corners of the ground are all grim – head instead for the Magpie & Crown in the High Street if going to a match there is my advice, although that advice only really stands if you’re an ale drinker.

  12. Mayoral result (excluding postal):

    Khan 13920 42.3%
    Goldsmith 12446 37.8%

  13. Difficult to believe this seat came close to voting Leave which means Feltham & Heston must have done. Very surprising.

  14. Feltham and Heston is still quite a working class area which had a high UKIP vote for London. So I wasn’t actually that surprised by Hounslow in the context of the overall result. This part of the seat prob voted 60/40 Remain, which suggests Feltham/Heston was about 60/40 Leave.

  15. Andy – are referendum results by constituency available, then?

  16. Have seat breakdowns been released? I just assumed Hounslow was split between the two seats with Brentford voting Remain strongly and Feltham voting Leave albeit by a more narrow margin which gave Hounslow the comfortable Remain result it got.

  17. It wasn’t that comfortable in Hounslow in fact it was pretty close margin for remain of 2.2% or 2,434 votes. But yes I imagine Brentford and Isleworth would have been strongly remain with Feltham and Heston pretty strongly leave (though slightly less obviously that B&I was remain).

  18. “Andy – are referendum results by constituency available, then?”

    No but the overall result was 51% Remain 49% Leave. If you assume this seat voted Remain fairly comfortably then Feltham & Heston must have voted Leave.

  19. There must have been respectable numbers of Asian voters who opted for Leave here- the same goes for Harrow.

  20. I’m trying to think of a reason why Asian voters in Tower Hamlets and Newham would vote differently. Maybe those in Tower Hamlets are better educated.

  21. slightly more prosperous in parts of Newham. Higher rates of house ownership. Plus perhaps are divide in Asian votes with Bengalis the overwhelming Asian demographic in Tower Hamlets less Leave than the more mixed Asian demographic in Newham.

  22. According to Lord Ashcroft’s poll about a third of Asian voters went for Leave.

  23. Which probably means about 50% of the less educated ones did. Helps to explain the result in places like Slough and Luton.

  24. Pepperminttea
    Indeed you are right, I was going off memory and had the area pegged at 56% Remain for some reason but I was wrong, indeed the result was very narrow but that aside we agree Hounslow was almost certainly split between the two seats.

  25. “I’m trying to think of a reason why Asian voters in Tower Hamlets and Newham would vote differently. Maybe those in Tower Hamlets are better educated.”

    Lots of yuppies in Tower Hamlets.

    There’s an interesting contrast between Harrow and Barnet as well.

  26. I was surprised Leave came so close in Hounslow, but not that surprised.
    It would have come from the Feltham and Heston end (Feltham, Bedfont more I think than Heston).

    Perhaps Asian support for Leave is higher than predicted aswell.

    In this seat, I would guess Leave would be higher around Brentford and Gunnersbury (in the middle).

  27. And Hanworth of course.

  28. Anecdotal but a friend (a professional white remain voter) working in Feltham and Heston picked up some real hostility from 3rd generation Asian C1 colleagues towards more recent immigrants, both East Europeans and other Asians. They voted leave.

  29. Hopefully there’ll be some in-depth research projects into these questions in the coming months.

  30. I have come across Asian people who vote Leave – they may think the EU detracts from our relationship with our other friends around the world, but it’s all a bit anecdotal.

    Whether we get constituency break downs is hard to tell – perhaps we need wards then it can be built back from that?

  31. Rushmoor council has published ward breakdowns. I’m don’t know whether any others have.

  32. I’m not sure whether ward breakdowns for Hounslow will be made public – the ward I counted in was in this seat (Isleworth) and, not counting the far smaller than usual “rejected” pile, voted roughly 55/45 in favour of Remain. The Chiswick seat piles suggested a far larger Remain lead.

    As others have speculated both here and on Feltham & Heston, I suspect the Feltham, Hanworth and Bedfont wards would have produced the largest splits for Leave.

  33. Ward breakdowns for Hounslow, and can all other councils in the UK who have the information please make it public:

  34. Feltham & Heston constituency:

    Remain: 22,632 (44.1%)
    Leave: 28,725 (55.9%)

    Brentford & Isleworth constituency:

    Remain: 36,123 (56.7%)
    Leave: 27,596 (43.3%)

  35. Massive remain wins in Turnham Green and the two Chiswick wards, either narrow wins or defeats everywhere else.

    Ashcroft’s polling suggests 67% of Asian voters voted remain, but this really doesn’t seem to be reflected in the results of highly Asian areas – for example Hounslow, Newham, Slough, Luton and Leicester were all far better for leave than that figure would suggest.

  36. I’m sceptical about using the cross-breaks of polls that weren’t exactly spot on to begin with to declare with confidence how certain groups voted. It is pretty clear from the results that less than 62% of Labour voters voted Remain (the figure being bandied about mainly by Corbyn supporters) and probably less than 67% Asian as well. Asian will have been a tiny cross-break anyway.

  37. Maybe 62% of those who are still actually with Labour voted to remain. But so many people in traditional Labour areas have either left them for Ukip or are usually non-voters, and of those people remain would have scored 0% and at absolute best 20% (probably lower) respectively.

  38. Maybe but not as likely in London where many are BAME. Tories might gain some but not in the poorer BAME areas I can imagine. And UKIP not likely to have much appeal either.

  39. There have been a few post-ref polls and they show little change. I doubt there will be much change until we have a new PM, and perhaps new Lab leader too.

  40. It’s hard to say. Any remotely marginal seat- particularly vs the Tories- has to be extremely vulnerable.

    If May wins the leadership race and then holds a GE after say three months (particularly if the government have a detailed plan re: Brexit by that point), the Tories could be looking at a greatly increased majority. Of course, this all depends on who is leading Labour by that point, although I’m not sure any current Lab MP matches up well vs. May at this point.

  41. The Chiswick remain vote and Bedfont/Feltham/Hanworth leave vote is to be expected based on demographics, but the huge size of the Osterley leave vote runs contrary to the perceived middle class characteristics of the ward.

  42. Just catching up on this – my Mum’s ward was the one in B&I which heavily voted “Leave”, yes I’d say this would be something of a surprise as it is by and large a fairly affluent ward within the borough which, if you are taking the generalised demographics approach would suggest it *should* have voted Remain. That said, there is a fairly sizeable ex-Housing Association rump (including my old street!) which may cause a skewed effect.

    No surprise to see the predictions that it was the largely WWC areas to the west of the borough that made the overall result so close.

  43. A Croydon seat, most likely Central, may be possibility too as Croydon has three whole constituencies and the borough was under a 10% margin for remain. New Addington would probably have been extremely heavily leave.

  44. The proposed seat here is notionally Tory by about 4,500

  45. Yeah, looks about right – the movement of some Hounslow wards to the Feltham & Hounslow seat (including mine!) removes some of the more heavily Labour-leaning wards.

    The new suggestions seem to me to be a better fit in this area than the previous review, which saw my ward becoming part of a “Hampton” seat somewhat nonsensically. Will also mean little shift in terms of sitting MPs by the looks – Ruth Cadbury would be the Brentford & Chiswick incumbent, Seema Malhotra Feltham & Hounslow and the Southall MP taking the Heston & Southall (or whatever it’s called!) seat.

  46. Given how close this seat was in 2015 it could be “one to watch” this time around. One key battleground could be one of the more central wards of Osterley & Spring Grove, which has become more marginal in recent years (and returned a 2-1 split in the last locals). However, this was also the one ward in the constituency that voted “Leave” in the referendum.

    On the other hand, the Labour vote, as is presumably the case across large parts of London, is likely to be more solid here than it might be in other parts of the country.

    Another 3-figure majority (either way) therefore? I could be in for a late one with possible recounts…

  47. Think this will be a Con gain. I do think Labour will do better in London than anywhere else but this will be one of 4-5 seats they’ll lose in the capital.

  48. Mary Macleod, the 2010-15 MP here, has announced she hopes to secure the nomination to run again. She’ll likely win, quite possibly with a bigger majority than she had in 2010.

  49. akmd:

    I think we are probably in agreement that Labour’s 4 2015 gains in London are all at risk.

    Beyond that there is a second tier of seats which – should the polls remain bleak for Labour – are also vulnerable : Eltham, Hampstead/Kilburn, Westminster North, and possibly Hammersmith and Tooting. All (save Eltham?) remain voting and – save Eltham – socially polarised but the type of terrain the Conservatives won or were close to winning in the 80’s.

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