Bristol North West

2015 Result:
Conservative: 22767 (43.9%)
Labour: 17823 (34.4%)
Lib Dem: 3214 (6.2%)
Green: 2952 (5.7%)
UKIP: 4889 (9.4%)
TUSC: 160 (0.3%)
MAJORITY: 4944 (9.5%)

Category: Marginal Conservative seat

Geography: South West. Part of the Bristol council area.

Main population centres: Bristol, Avonmouth.

Profile: Geographically the largest of the four Bristol seats, stretching out to the Severn estuary (and technically including a large chunk of it). The seat contains some of the more affluent and Conservative parts of Bristol like Westbury and Stoke Bishop, but these are balanced out by council estates like Southmead and Lockleaze and the heavy industry and manufacturing out at the Avonmouth Docks, making this a classic marginal.

Politics: A Bristol North West seat has existed since 1950, but the boundaries have changed substantially over the years. For many decades it was a classic marginal seat between the Conservatives and Labour, but the seat that existed between 1997 and 2010 took in parts of South Gloucestershire and was safely Labour. Boundary changes in 2010 transformed it into a marginal seat that was won by Charlotte Leslie for the Conservatives.

Current MP
CHARLOTTE LESLIE (Conservative) Born 1978, Liverpool. Educated at Millfield School and Oxford University. Former Policy advisor to David Willetts MP. First elected as MP for Bristol North West in 2010.
Past Results
Con: 19115 (38%)
Lab: 13059 (26%)
LDem: 15841 (31%)
UKIP: 1175 (2%)
Oth: 1146 (2%)
MAJ: 3274 (7%)
Con: 13230 (28%)
Lab: 22192 (47%)
LDem: 9545 (20%)
UKIP: 1132 (2%)
Oth: 1393 (3%)
MAJ: 8962 (19%)
Con: 13349 (29%)
Lab: 24436 (52%)
LDem: 7387 (16%)
UKIP: 1149 (2%)
Oth: 371 (1%)
MAJ: 11087 (24%)
Con: 16193 (29%)
Lab: 27575 (50%)
LDem: 7263 (13%)
Oth: 2605 (5%)
MAJ: 11382 (21%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
CHARLOTTE LESLIE (Conservative) See above.
DARREN JONES (Labour) Born Lawrence Weston. Educated at Portway School and Plymouth School. Solicitor. Contested Torridge and West Devon 2010.
CLARE CAMPION-SMITH (Liberal Democrat) Retired teacher. Bristol councilor since 2006.
JUSTIN QUINNELL (Green) Freelance photographer and lecturer. Contested Bristol West 2005.
ANNE LEMON (TUSC) Science teacher.
Comments - 170 Responses on “Bristol North West”
  1. Re the turnout point, how did votes shares in the appropriate wards look in previous years?

  2. Does anybody have the recent theoretical figures for local vote share in this constituency and for Bristol S, like I asked for on the Bristol E page?

  3. They are on this thread for may 2013. I think Andy has worked them out.

  4. Thanks Joe- could you point me in their direction?

  5. I’m sure it is posted under this seat, several posts back, probably early to mid june.

  6. CON 40
    LAB 39
    LD 14
    UKIP 4
    GRN 3

  7. Again even I (who probably despises the LDs more than almost anyone living in the UK today) don’t agree at all that their vote share can possibly decline to that extent in one go, much though I’d love to see it. I do however agree that a narrow Conservative hold is the most likely result – in fact, it’s perfectly possible that it won’t even be narrow.

  8. In a CON seat I would have thought a lot of ‘LD voters’ would go blue to keep Labour out. Plus some protest LD votes will go to other parties and a fair amount of the liberal LD vote will return to/go to Labour, won’t they?

  9. It could go Labour but the local elections suggest the Tories are doing quite well.

  10. Maybe:

    Con 40
    Labour 33
    LD 21
    UKIP 5
    Oth 1

  11. is anybody getting tired of hearing about the greens?

  12. Oh yeah I forgot if I give the Greens the slightest mention then it’s tiresome. Oh sorry this post has probably made you tired. Saying the Greens will get a few percent is no big deal really- I’m not being over optimistic nor am I writing a tome on the subject so what is the problem?

  13. its just getting a bit repeitive, there are other aspects of politics to talk about

  14. I think there were four recounts here before the result was finally declared on the Friday afternoon.

    It must have been a very very long night for all the counters…

  15. In which election?

  16. Sorry, 1992 it was.

  17. yes that makes sense. Con held by 45 votes I think.

  18. It was the last English seat to declare as well.

  19. If Doug Naysmith decided to contest the seat in 2010, do you reckon that he might have held even with the significant boundary changes?

  20. Don’t be daft.

  21. I reckon that with Naysmith the Labour vote may not have fallen as much, but the seat would definitely have still gone to the Tories with the Lib Dems in second I suspect.

  22. Labour’s hopes of gaining this seat rest completely on the Liberal Democrat vote collapsing in their direction. As things stand at the moment, that doesn’t seem to be the case in this seat and a well-placed 4th party (or well-known non-party) candidate could pick up disgruntled Lib Dem voters just as easily.
    It would appear that most of the Lib Dem vote in 2010 came from former Labour voters (who, equally, could have been Lib Dem voters in the past) and this should make Labour the firm challengers, but any increase in the Tory vote will make it very difficult for Labour to win.
    It should be fairly close but there is not any room for over-optimism.

  23. Ladbrokes:
    4/5 Cons
    Evs Lab
    16 LD

  24. Charlotte Leslie does strike me as an effective and caring local MP, but for some reason I put her in the same category as John Mann for one reason. Whenever there is some negative news about the other side, both seem to stick their oar in getting all sanctimonious and acting like do-gooders. Gets really annoying after a while.

  25. I wasn’t in the seat for the 2010 election but my experience of LibDems everywhere is that they will put out the most misleading leaflets and campaigning of any major party.

    So maybe they fought 2010 by claiming “it’s between us and the Tories” and substantially boosted their share of the vote by squeezing Labour – not nearly enough to win, but pushing Labour down to 3rd in a seat that had been shorn of many Labour voters. Which could be why the LDs went from 20% to 31% of the vote.

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see that fall to nearer 16%, but some of those lost votes will go Tory; so in a tight 2015 result, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Charlotte Leslie hold on by 1500-3000 votes.

  26. “I wasn’t in the seat for the 2010 election but my experience of LibDems everywhere is that they will put out the most misleading leaflets and campaigning of any major party.”

    Seems to be a common theme around the country. I remember at the 2010 election at the Feltham & Heston declaration Alan Keen being very scathing about the Lib Dem campaign while being very respectful of that fought by the Conservatives and others.

  27. Bar graphs with “[insert party] name can’t win here” is a favourite feature of Lib Dem leaflets in my area 🙂 But their campaining at local levels in Sheffield is stellar given how terrible the council is. If they reject IKEA prior to the May elections here, there will be a bloodbath in store for them.

  28. (…They referring to the Labour group who lead SCC.)

  29. Much as I loathe the experience of going to Ikea, it’s a very useful store which offers great value for money, and a great generator of local jobs and prosperity both direct and indirect. Northern and Eastern Sheffield is hardly short of derelict industrial sites within close proximity of the M1/M18. Why would the council possibly want to object to Ikea coming to the city?

  30. Somewhat ironic that Ikea is mentioned in this Bristol thread, as there was quite a furoré in the late 90s over the development of Ikea at the former Bristol Rovers ground at Eastville – lots of local opposition to the build.

  31. Simply because the ineptitude of Sheffield city council knows no bounds. In terms of Ikea the council is scared s***less of the concerns expressed by Meadowhall (the large shopping mall) about them opening here as well as John Lewis in the city centre. Furthermore there have been some concerns about potential traffic and congestion. The latter concern has reportedly been cleared though.

    I read in the local press that a final decision on approving the application will be this month. The idiocy of this council terrifies me, but if they’re stupid enough to reject it they deserve to be hammered at the local elections which follow.

  32. I am thinking that Labour should put out a leaflet in Richmond Park saying “the Lib Dems can’t win here”, since that is clearly the honest truth. As well as being repayment for years of bloody graphs & racehorses. It would be silly to put that out in Twickenham or Kingston/Surbiton there since it’s evident they can & should still win in those seats.

  33. I would have thought SCC would be clever enough to get Ikea through. We’ll see I suppose, although I’m not sure it would mean a bloodbath necessarily – there aren’t many marginal wards in Sheffield.

  34. Stockton South in 1992.

  35. Looks like the Tories still doing quite well in Bristol NW despite a difficult set of elections nationally (as in 2013).
    But UKIP have started contesting more Bristol wards. I think they may have only contested Avonmouth in 2013. As then, despite that, the Tories have again won that traditional Labour area.

    Elsewhere in the city the Greens seem to have made a significant advance on the Lib Dem vote. Redland has gone Green on a massive majority. UKIP have made a significant advance in Brislington in Bristol E, nearly winning one of the seats.

  36. I’m pretty hopeful that the Lib Dem vote will indeed collapse here and something fairly like Stockton South in 1992 could happen.

  37. 2014 results for Bristol North West

    Con 10113 (33.6%)
    Lab 7360 (24.5%)
    LD 5245 (17.4%)
    UKIP 4121 (13.7%)
    Gre 2770 (9.2%)
    TUSC 316 (1.1%)

    The Conservatives carried Avonmouth (narrowly over Labour); Henbury; Stoke Bishop; and Westbury. Labour carried Horfield (narrowly over the Tories), Lockleaze, and Southmead. The Liberal Democrats carried Kingweston by 25 votes over UKIP.

    A pretty solid set of results for the Conservatives in the circumstances.

  38. Contrary to earlier posters, and with the benefit of the local election results above, I think that LD could well fall to not much above 10% here at next GE.

    The saving grace that might prevent it being quite so bad – and would correspondingly help Cons I should think – is if they can convince enough people that, because they were 2nd in 2010, they are the main challengers to Charlotte Leslie here.

  39. Avonmouth and Henbury are both Labour/Tory marginals though – both of the main parties pick up about 50% of the vote there in general elections.

    So that means the Tories have Stoke Bishop and Westbury (obvious) and Labour have Southmead and Lockleaze (also obvious).

    The fact that the “battle grounds” are therefore Avonmouth, Henbury and Horfield can only be a good thing for Labour. Although I agree that they’ll need to pick up Liberal Democrats in Kingsweston and Henleaze to get across the line though.

    Either way it’s going to be a close one…

  40. Mild Mild West- I don’t follow why it is a good thing for Labour that Henbury, Avonmouth and Horfield. The Tories carried Henbury by over 20% in 2014, they carried Avonmouth (albeit very narrowly indeed) and were 74 votes behind in Horfield.

    The general election may well close here but I have to say that the local elections point quite firmly in the direction of a Conservative hold.

  41. I should add that the Lib Dems carried Henleaze over the Conservatives by about 500. Labour was 800 votes behind the Conservatives in third.

  42. Unitary authority local election results, popular vote using highest vote method:

  43. That’s my point Tory. It’s pretty much 50/50 in those areas with traditionally low turn out for Labour voters. If Labour can get their voters out (more likely for a general) then that’s why it’s so close. Tories aren’t in the lead in those areas by huge margins.

    The lib dems in Henleaze (and I think there was a far amount of lib dem and green vote in Horfield as well) will, I expect, largely go to Labour too (judging it on uniform national swing of what the lib dems are doing).

  44. “It’s pretty much 50/50 in those areas with traditionally low turn out for Labour voters.”

    Labour voters do turn out when they are in opposition. You are incorrectly remembering what happened when the party was in government and assuming the same applies now they are not. At the moment it’s Tories and Lib Dems who are sitting at home mid term and will to a certain extent return at the general election. Based on the local election results there’s little chance of Labour gaining this seat.

  45. I was looking at the census data here and it’s striking how much council housing there is in the outlying wards. Social renting is above 27% in Avonmouth, Kingweston, Henbury, Southmead, and Lockleaze. And although the area Labour-leaning on the whole, the Conservatives will have carried Avonmouth and Henbury in 2010 and will not have been at all far behind in Kingweston, where 42% of the housing is social rented!

  46. I see Charlotte Leslie has called for the NHS to look at introducing charging patients for using the service.

    Hardly the best move if you are defending a smallish majority 9 months before a general election.

    Labour gain!!!

  47. She’s hardly the first Tory MP to suggest that though.

  48. The elected MP for NW Bristol in 2001 was Steven Williams, Lib Dem. The constituency was split by boundary changes.. He is currently MP of Bristol West.

  49. I hope that both former Conservative & Labour voters shall consider the Liberal Democrats at this election on May the 7th for acting in the national interest in 2010 and ensuring a stable government during an economic downturn. Liberal Democrats offer a pragmatic political party, which shall protect public services and reduce your tax bills. They believe in staying in the European Union, but also reforming the institution, and would like to highlight the vast benefits of immigration, particularly for Bristol North West and Southmead Hospital. The Liberal Democrats are the only party who have costed an £8bn investment into the NHS that is needed, including £3.5bn into mental health services and £2.5bn into social care, which both of the other party’s have neglected over the past three decades. The Liberal Democrats also stand for political reform, transparency and devolution to local areas.

    Kind Regards.

  50. Alex

    What is your understanding of the term “non-partisan”?

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