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
2010
Con: 20022 (37%)
Lab: 18064 (34%)
LDem: 12718 (24%)
UKIP: 863 (2%)
Oth: 2098 (4%)
MAJ: 1958 (4%)
2005*
Con: 13918 (30%)
Lab: 18329 (40%)
LDem: 10477 (23%)
GRN: 1652 (4%)
Oth: 1641 (4%)
MAJ: 4411 (10%)
2001
Con: 12957 (29%)
Lab: 23275 (52%)
LDem: 5994 (13%)
GRN: 1324 (3%)
Oth: 964 (2%)
MAJ: 10318 (23%)
1997
Con: 17825 (32%)
Lab: 32249 (57%)
LDem: 4613 (8%)
Oth: 1448 (3%)
MAJ: 14424 (26%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

Demographics
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.
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Comments - 532 Responses on “Brentford & Isleworth”
  1. Joe – yes I do. They might even all be Anthony trying to liven up the threads.

  2. Joe R- I live round there and can confirm that most of us agree with both labels. Secondly, you’d be able to tell if I was Bob through the tone of my comments and writing style; not to mention the constant bets 🙂 Bob writes to convey information whereas I prefer a more elegant writing style for example.

  3. I’m not holding my breath that Bob will honour his bets, some of which are so stupid he’s bound to lose them.

  4. Upon implementation of the LGA 1972, the government stated that “the new county boundaries are solely for the purpose of defining areas of … local government. They are administrative areas, and will not alter the traditional boundaries of Counties.’ My view is that Rosindell and others who consider themselves to be from Essex are quite within their rights to say so- it is a matter of personal choice.

  5. If he was actually able to, then accusations of being a Tory in disguise/denial may prove accurate 😉

  6. It has never been my intention to libel anyone but I don’t understand how anyone can argue that the ICG are not on the far right of the political spectrum, especially now its been confirmed that they are in league with UKIP locally.

    Anyway it seems Labour have successfully smoked them out judging by this recent newspaper article

    http://www.hounslowchronicle.co.uk/west-london-news/local-hounslow-news/2013/07/10/council-compared-to-basil-fawlty-by-election-hopeful-109642-33591757/

    It is a brave move by Labour and I just hope it doesn’t backfire because I know the party had been counting on UKIP running in Isleworth and splitting the right wing vote and now that looks like it may not happen.

  7. “what makes you think manufacturing won’t increase?”

    Because there’s little evidence that it will in terms of investment and the energy crunch issue is especially worrying – while other countries are likely to get cheaper and more secure energy we will get more expensive and less secure energy.

    I’d have to see a major mentality change in this country to be confident of a manufacturing resurgance and I see no evidence of it. Without this change the current trned of decline will continue.

    Industrial output didn’t start falling here in 2008, it started falling in 2000 – we’ve into a continuing 13 year industrial depression.

    Or looking at it in generational terms, industrial output is currently 2% lower than it was 25 years ago in 1988.

    While the 25 years before that from 1963 to 1988 – a period notorius for world recessions, oil shocks, miners strikes, sterling crises, stock market crashes, winters of discontent, three day weeks and IMF bailouts – saw industrial ouput rise by 75%.

  8. “The question is whether we can keep the show on the road long enough for restructuring and rebalancing to take effect.”

    I think the government have given up with any attempt at economic rebalancing and are now trying to get consumers and house buyers to sell themselves into more debt.

    Debt is the drug, increased consumer spending and higher house prices are the temporary highs it gives.

    I find it reprehensible and very depressing.

    And I agree with the comments you made previously.

  9. I wonder who “Reynard” really is. An agent provocateur perhaps?

    To say that “The number of votes won by the ICG in Isleworth and Syon wards, and in others, over several consecutive local elections demonstrates that there is an appetite for extreme right wing policies amongst voters in this constituency” and then to describe those wards as “substantial pockets of ignorance and bigotry” is disingenuous.

    Those areas are no more racist than any other. Most ICG voters in Isleworth and Syon vote for that party because they perceive it (in my view mistakenly) to be a centrist, even non-political, community organisation.

    It is a long-standing ICG tactic to use pseudonyms to publish outrageous remarks attacking local electors for supporting the ICG. Such voters are then conned into thinking it is the Labour Party who are behind such remarks and this has the effect of strengthening support for the ICG.

    I find it particularly dubious that Raynard gives a link to an article which he seems to be claiming is proof that the ICG are “on the far right of the political spectrum” when the article itself shows nothing of the sort (and, in fact, provides good coverage for the group’s leader).

    So this leads one to question why he really posted the link..?

    For the record I and others have good reason to oppose the ICG because I think some of its members are too prone to using bullying and deceitful tactics on local internet forums and elsewhere. (I also strongly resent being physically stalked, as I have been by one of the group’s more vocal supporters).

    It is a straightforward fact that the group’s origins lie in the politics of the South Isleworth National Front. (The first Community Group candidates – who stood in Isleworth in the 1986 local elections – had their election address printed at the NF HQ in Pawsons Road, Croydon).

    However, whilst its origins and some of its members’ tactics may owe something to the traditions of the British far right, its published policies suggest otherwise. In fact one of its councillors gave a grant to a BME organisation when he was in charge of the council’s Community Investment Fund (although in the view of many this is out-weighed by the fact that the group also voted to close down the highly-acclaimed ‘Hounslow Language Service’, which gave specialist English tuition to refugee children).

    Do I think the ICG’s leader still has questions to answer about the sincerity of his conversion away from the far-right activities he engaged in from 1977-91? (No reason to ‘snip’ here, Anthony, this is all on the record and he admits it himself). Yes I do. But to simply characterise the ICG as fascist – and more importantly to dismiss its voters in the same way – shows not only a lack of sincerity but conforms suspiciously neatly to what the ICG wants its opponents to say.

    I would urge people on this forum to take Reynard’s comments with a pinch of salt.

  10. I think that that’s a very balanced & thoughtful contribution, Robin. Just calling organizations or people fascist is often very simplistic. To trust the ICG is one thing, to label them glibly as fascists is another. I find them dislikeable, but though their origins are extremely iffy to say the least they don’t actually practise truly fascist policies. It is interesting to note that the true fascist parties such as the BNP haven’t stood against them, but that doesn’t mean we should automatically tar them with the same brush.

  11. Very interesting post RH.

  12. Excellent insight as ever, Robin Hood. I had been tempted to reply again to Reynard but his/her posts have been so dubious in their intent as to have me doubting what said poster was actually trying to achieve.

    Most of the people who voted for the ICG in the past will surely have done so on the “community” aspect and won’t have a fascist bone in their body.

  13. Romford, like Bromley, Orpington, Croydon, Richmond, Harrow, Enfield, Chingford, Uxbridge, Northwood, Hornchurch and Upminister, is in Greater London

    All these places are always incorrectly referred to as being in the counties they are taditionally from – whether it’s Essex, Kent, Surrey or Middlesex – but they are all in Greater London

  14. Of course that’s broadly correct Tim – although there are relatively small parts of those boroughs which do actually have London postcodes.

    For example SE19 covers bits of Bromley and Croydon, SE20 and SE26 both also cover northern Bromley borough. I’m pretty sure the SW postcodes venture into Croydon too.

  15. “All these places are always incorrectly referred to as being in the counties they are traditionally from – whether it’s Essex, Kent, Surrey or Middlesex – but they are all in Greater London”

    You tend to find that people that live in such places refer to them under their old counties. For a Bermondsey family moving to Bromley would almost certainly describe it as moving ‘out to Kent’ due to the distance of the town from Central London. Older people tend to stick to traditional counties as well.

    The media tend to make the same mistake. I’ve always noticed Chingford is always said to be in Essex in many news reports while Enfield was in North London and then Middlesex in one newpaper report I read.

    Ultimately Tim is right though…they are all in London.

    Admittedly I am still baffled why Middlesex appears on addresses. Why hasn’t Royal Mail rectified this?!

  16. “You tend to find that people that live in such places refer to them under their old counties.”

    Where I live, that is much less the case than when I first got to know the area 15-20 years ago. As you say, it’s confined mostly to old people now. The vast majority of residents of Beckenham under the age of 50 would say that they lived in London. Perhaps Havering is a bit different.

  17. “All these places are always incorrectly referred to as being in the counties they are taditionally from – whether it’s Essex, Kent, Surrey or Middlesex – but they are all in Greater London”

    There is no contradiction in saying that they are under the administrative auspices of Greater London and yet they are geographically part of the respective counties of which they have always been a part. No more than is in say referring to Bury, Lancashire or Altrincham, Cheshire though those towns were part of a very short-lived late 20th century entity called ‘Greater Manchester’

  18. “Perhaps Havering is a bit different”

    Almost certainly. As far as Havering folk are concerned, they are in Essex. I know very few people from Havering who will say they are from London.

  19. “Admittedly I am still baffled why Middlesex appears on addresses. Why hasn’t Royal Mail rectified this?!”

    All of Middlesex formed part of Greater London except for Potters Barr (that joined Hertfordshire) and Spelthorne (that joined Surrey).

    The retention of the traditional county post codes does cause confusion, as I recall that Kingston Upon Thames and Surbiton remained part of the Surrey postal area.

    Potters Bar now carries the Herts Postcode while Spelthorne (Staines, Sudbury on Thames, Shepperton and Ashford) all retain the Middlesex postcode.

  20. I recall that East Yorkshire and Hull folk were expected to put ‘North Humberside’ on their letters, and few did.

    I think the official postal address’s remain ‘North Humberside’ but this is not practiced.

  21. “There is no contradiction in saying that they are under the administrative auspices of Greater London and yet they are geographically part of the respective counties of which they have always been a part.”

    That’s obviously true.

    However Pete, would you not agree that in at least some of these outer London areas, identification with “Greater London” is now far stronger than with the traditional geographical county. As I have said, I believe this is certainly true of at least the northern half of Bromley borough, which I know well. I strongly suspect places like Finchley and Harrow will be similar, though I don’t know them well enough to be sure. When everyone currently over 50 is dead, I do not believe that there will be much if any identification with the old counties within the Greater London boundaries.

  22. There is no contradiction in saying that they are under the administrative auspices of Greater London and yet they are geographically part of the respective counties of which they have always been a part. No more than is in say referring to Bury, Lancashire or Altrincham, Cheshire though those towns were part of a very short-lived late 20th century entity called ‘Greater Manchester’

    Amen to that, Pete.

  23. I suppose the simple answer for many of these places is because they retain postal addresses related to the county – and this will be no doubt linked to them not having London postcodes. Most of the places in this constituency, for example, have TW postcodes (Chiswick different in that it is W4 and isn’t referred to as being in Middlesex).

    I always regard myself as living in Middlesex in any case and I was born after 1974…

  24. Funny enough my cousins (born in the late 80s) who live in Harrow also say they live in Middlesex.

  25. L Bernard- as does my best friend, who is a South Ruislip man.

  26. Chingford is indeed referred to as being in Essex by many people. And yet it has an E4 London postcode. In fact the E4 postcode goes fractionally outside Greater London & into the actual present-day county of Essex – I think it’s the only London postcode which does so.

  27. You have misunderstood me RH. I included the link to the newspaper article to demonstrate precisely how the ICG hides its real views behind a veneer of respectability. To read that article you would think butter wouldn’t melt in their mouths, which surely is proof positive of this group’s deceitful nature?

    The giving of grants to BME groups when they were in power and all their promoting and funding for “community cohesion” projects should be seen in the same light, as a smokescreen for their real underlying agenda.

    You and I are broadly from the same team RH, and on balance I respect your strategy. Leaving these people untouched until 2018 when a Labour or Labour-led mid-term government leaves Labour councils vulnerable would be frightening. But I am nervous about 2014 and do not share your apparently unshakable confidence either that the ICG will lose that election or, even if they do, that they will be defeated for good. Plus even if they are, we will still have G15 and other resident groups to contend with.

    I wish you well, but please be a little more forgiving of my honest anxiety.

  28. “However Pete, would you not agree that in at least some of these outer London areas, identification with “Greater London” is now far stronger than with the traditional geographical county. As I have said, I believe this is certainly true of at least the northern half of Bromley borough, which I know well. I strongly suspect places like Finchley and Harrow will be similar, though I don’t know them well enough to be sure. When everyone currently over 50 is dead, I do not believe that there will be much if any identification with the old counties within the Greater London boundaries.”

    To a lesser extent its probably true of people who live outside London as well.

    For example I get slightly aggravated if I see Romfored, Essex or Orpington, Kent or Mitcham, Surrey used on an address. To me all those places are in London.

    Wherea people a generation older than me might still think of the old counties.

  29. I am very happy to call myself a Londoner – in Twickenham and Richmond.

    London has been the area it is for 48 years.

    It includes these suburbs aswell.

  30. Did people living in these areas approve of the change in 1965?

    That’s what I’d like to know.

  31. “For example I get slightly aggravated if I see Romfored, Essex or Orpington, Kent or Mitcham, Surrey used on an address. To me all those places are in London.”

    You make a very good point Richard.

    Again, to use the example of Bromley and Beckenham, it is becoming less and less common to write Kent after the postal town. Mostly these days you write Beckenham or Bromley immediately followed by the post code.

  32. I think some of the areas brought into London at that time did indeed object but were overruled. If I remember rightly, there were some areas that were originally supposed to come in that were left out though.

  33. In other words it’s okay to overrule people because in 50 years time they’ll accept the change.

  34. didn’t work in Humberside or Avon of course…

  35. Lest we forget there are still active campaigns about the county of Middlesex and, of course, the identity associated with it through Cricket (I’m a big Middlesex supporter).

    In the big wide world I’d consider myself as being a Londoner (of sorts), but on a more micro scale I’d say I was from Isleworth/Hounslow, Middx.

  36. ‘In other words it’s okay to overrule people because in 50 years time they’ll accept the change.’

    That was post-war technocracy for you.

  37. ..or Herefordshire….

    But of course all these places weren’t affected by quite the same factors as London or indeed Birmingham and its satellites which lest we forget have also swallowed up parts of the surrounding counties since WWII.

  38. I’ve often wondered which areas were mooted to be included in the GLC but then weren’t. Would Epsom & Ewell be one of them by any chance? (Ewell has London telephone numbers, unlike some Greater London areas like Uxbridge & Romford.)

  39. originally mooted in the review were Dartford in Kent, Chigwell and Waltham Cross in Essex; Epsom & Ewell, Banstead, Caterham & warlingham, Esher, Walton & weybridge in Surrey; Watford, Bushey, Rickmansowth, Chorleywood, Watford Rural and Cheshunt in Hertfordshire. Also those areas of Middlesex (Spelthorne and POtters Bar) which were not ultimately included.
    In their final report all the areas in Surrey were included as was Spelthorne (which would have been linked with Feltham). Chigwell was included but not Waltham Cross. Dartford was excluded and all those parts of Hertfordshire in the review were excluded except for Cheshunt (and of course Barnet and East Barnet)

  40. Bushey also has London telephone numbers and also continued to be covered by the Metropolitan Police until the advent of the GLA brought the boundaries in line. I think some of those Surrey districts did likewise and possibly Epping Forest also

  41. I’ve always thought perhaps the ugliest result of the boundary changes in the 60s and 70s was Warwickshire, which with Coventry etc carved out looks very strange and contorted.

  42. thanks Pete. most appreciative. The non-inclusion of those areas of course made the GLC area much more competitive between Labour & Conservative than it would otherwise have been

  43. “I’ve always thought perhaps the ugliest result of the boundary changes in the 60s and 70s was Warwickshire, which with Coventry etc carved out looks very strange and contorted.”

    Yes putting the rural areas of Solihull council like Meriden into the West Midlands County wasn’t a great idea IMO.

  44. Barnaby is right about Chingford. Its E4 postcode goes over the Greater London border to encompass Sewardstone and Sewardstonebury in the Epping Forest district of Essex.

    “The non-inclusion of those areas of course made the GLC area much more competitive between Labour & Conservative than it would otherwise have been”

    I have to agree with you here.

  45. I’m surprised there hasn’t been some move by those areas to rejoin Warks, although I confess my knowledge of the area is pretty limited.

  46. The area between Coventry and Birmingham consists of commuter villages like Hampton-in-Arden and Meriden which are thoroughly metropolitan. A bit like Surrey, for the London-based commentators who form the majority on this site.

    However the inclusion of Coventry in “Greater Birmingham” was an odd feature of the 1970s local government reform. When we get our metropolitan mayor, like in London, I hope it doesn’t try and include Coventry.

    On Greater London there was a strong “NIMBY” reaction against the proposals in the 1960s, which the Conservative government eventually acceded to, despite this defeating the object of making London normally Conservative. A lot of these areas are unquestionably part of London – Loughton, Worcester Park, Sunbury, Bushey.

  47. John is right. The Tories only wanted a ‘Greater London’ as it included heavily Tory voting areas that traditionally fell outside of London. It was a form of counter -gerrymandering….like a reversal of Herbert Morrisons ‘build the Tories out of London’ plan.

  48. Worcester Park is a very good example (as it happens I was there today). If one walks in a westerly direction from the station, one crosses the boundary from Kingston-upon-Thames into the borough of Epsom & Ewell. There is no apparent difference on the ground at all (although it takes you from being in a safeish LD seat to a very safe Tory one!) and that applies to some other places where there is a boundary between the GLA area & the home counties.

  49. A similar thing is walking across the bridge by Hampton Court Palace. It doesn’t feel like a different area but you’re moving from Greater London to Surrey.

  50. yes Andy – in fact, E Molesey also has London phone numbers, and Hampton Court is postally officially in E Molesey.

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