Conservative Target Seats

These are the seventy-five seats with the lowest percentage majorities over the Conservative party. This does not necessarily mean they would be the most winnable seats for the Conservatives in practice, or that they are the seats the Conservative party will actually be targetting at the next general election. The Conservative party won 306 seats at the last general election, so would need to win another twenty seats to secure an overall majority in the House of Commons.

1. Hampstead & Kilburn Majority 42 (0.1%)
2. Bolton West Majority 92 (0.2%)
3. Solihull Majority 175 (0.3%)
4. Southampton, Itchen Majority 192 (0.4%)
5. Mid Dorset and North Poole Majority 269 (0.6%)
6. Wirral South Majority 531 (1.3%)
7. Derby North Majority 613 (1.4%)
8. Wells Majority 800 (1.4%)
9. Dudley North Majority 649 (1.7%)
10. Great Grimsby Majority 714 (2.2%)
11. Morley & Outwood Majority 1101 (2.3%)
12. Telford Majority 978 (2.4%)
13. Walsall North Majority 990 (2.7%)
14. St Austell & Newquay Majority 1312 (2.8%)
15. Somerton & Frome Majority 1817 (3%)
16. Birmingham, Edgbaston Majority 1274 (3.1%)
17. Sutton & Cheam Majority 1608 (3.3%)
18. Halifax Majority 1472 (3.4%)
19. Newcastle-under-Lyme Majority 1552 (3.6%)
20. Middlesbrough South & East Cleveland Majority 1677 (3.6%)
21. Wakefield Majority 1613 (3.6%)
22. St Ives Majority 1719 (3.7%)
23. Plymouth Moor View Majority 1588 (3.8%)
24. Gedling Majority 1859 (3.9%)
25. Eltham Majority 1663 (4%)
26. Walsall South Majority 1755 (4.3%)
27. Nottingham South Majority 1772 (4.3%)
28. Chippenham Majority 2470 (4.7%)
29. Tooting Majority 2524 (5%)
30. Chorley Majority 2593 (5.2%)
31. North East Derbyshire Majority 2445 (5.2%)
32. Exeter Majority 2721 (5.2%)
33. Blackpool South Majority 1852 (5.3%)
34. Westminster North Majority 2126 (5.4%)
35. Oldham East & Saddleworth Majority 103 (5.4%)
36. Southampton, Test Majority 2413 (5.5%)
37. Luton South Majority 2329 (5.5%)
38. Bridgend Majority 2263 (5.9%)
39. Dagenham & Rainham Majority 2630 (5.9%)
40. Delyn Majority 2272 (6.1%)
41. Cheadle Majority 3272 (6.2%)
42. North Cornwall Majority 2981 (6.4%)
43. Gower Majority 2683 (6.4%)
44. Norwich South Majority 310 (6.4%)
45. Penistone & Stocksbridge Majority 3049 (6.6%)
46. Eastbourne Majority 3435 (6.6%)
47. Birmingham, Northfield Majority 2782 (6.7%)
48. Stalybridge & Hyde Majority 2744 (6.7%)
49. Bury South Majority 3292 (6.8%)
50. Harrow West Majority 3143 (6.8%)
51. Bradford East Majority 365 (6.9%)
52. Taunton Deane Majority 3993 (6.9%)
53. Scunthorpe Majority 2549 (6.9%)
54. Berwick-upon-Tweed Majority 2690 (7%)
55. Vale of Clwyd Majority 2509 (7.1%)
56. Wolverhampton North East Majority 2484 (7.1%)
57. Eastleigh Majority 3864 (7.2%)
58. Hyndburn Majority 3090 (7.2%)
59. Alyn & Deeside Majority 2919 (7.3%)
60. Birmingham, Selly Oak Majority 3482 (7.5%)
61. Hammersmith Majority 3549 (7.5%)
62. Argyll & Bute Majority 3431 (7.6%)
63. Brighton, Pavilion Majority 1252 (7.6%)
64. Darlington Majority 3388 (7.9%)
65. Sefton Central Majority 3862 (8%)
66. Aberdeenshire West & Kincardine Majority 3684 (8.2%)
67. Clwyd South Majority 2834 (8.2%)
68. Bristol East Majority 3722 (8.3%)
69. Don Valley Majority 3595 (8.3%)
70. Torbay Majority 4078 (8.3%)
71. Coventry South Majority 3845 (8.4%)
72. Batley & Spen Majority 4406 (8.6%)
73. Angus Majority 3282 (8.6%)
74. Newport West Majority 3544 (8.9%)
75. Copeland Majority 3833 (9%)
Comments - 140 Responses on “Conservative Targets”
  1. Ironically if Labour was in during this Parliament gay Marriage would probably have been introduced( through maybe not if Brown was the PM as I don’t think he was completely committed to it) and the vast majority of the PLP voted for it.

  2. @Peter Crawford

    I don’t disagree with you at all that both Cannock and Dudley South are a challenge for the Conservatives based on local results since 2010. They are however – especially Dudley South – exactly the type of seats the Conservatives have to stay competitive in to remain the largest party, let alone get a majority. If they lack the confidence to contest these , they appear to be throwing in the towel already, not least give the dearth of seats currently held by Labour that they can hope to gain.

    And remember Halesowen / Rowley Regis and Stourbridge are similar seats to Dudley South.

  3. I don’t disagree with you at all that both Cannock and Dudley South are a challenge for the Conservatives based on local results since 2010. They are however – especially Dudley South – exactly the type of seats the Conservatives have to stay competitive in to remain the largest party, let alone get a majority. If they lack the confidence to contest these , they appear to be throwing in the towel already, not least give the dearth of seats currently held by Labour that they can hope to gain.
    And remember Halesowen / Rowley Regis and Stourbridge are similar seats to Dudley South.

    couldn’t agree more…it’s pretty crazy for the tories to give up on those seats, but then again I am still, even after the scottish meltdown, sceptical about the tories’ ability to get the most seats, still less to form a government.

    I am sceptical about the list for the reason you describe.

  4. Stourbridge is in fact somewhat different from the other seats mentioned. In Stourbridge, the middle of the road suburban areas outweigh the traditional working-class ones whereas in the others seats they are finely balanced, hence why Stourbridge is more Conservative-leaning.

  5. In my view the Conservatives will lose Cannock Chase, Halesowen & RR, and Dudley South but retain Stourbridge. Remember that Black Country seats can be volatile so if Dudley South goes it does not mean that other in the lower reaches of Labour’s target list are in danger.

  6. I don’t think Stourbridge is that much different from Dudley West. In both cases Labour clearly are ahead in the 3 eastern wards, whilst 2 of the western wards (the Kingswinford wards in Dudley West , and the Norton and Pedmore/Stourbridge East in Stourbridge) are Conservative. The remaining one ward in Dudley West (Wordsley) and two in Stourbridge (Woolaston/Town and Amblecote) are essentially 3 way marginals with UKIP competitive. The overall majority is near identical. I could see both tracking in the same way – though Margot James may get an incumbency bonus.

  7. I don’t know why anyone would predict the Tories losing Stourbridge. Labour need a 5.5% swing which implies a national lead of 4%. The current UKPR polling average puts them 1% ahead.

  8. Firstly it is Dudley South not Dudley West (forgive my pedantry).

    Secondly, of Dudley South’s six wards three were quite clearly Labour-leaning in 2010 (though Netherton will have been tight) and three clearly Tory-leaning (including Wordsley actually). Of Stourbridge’s seven wards three will have leaned Labour with four leaning Conservative (even in Stoubridge Town, the Conservatives will have led handily enough). And if you are going to look at what has happened post-2010, then I think I can point out that in 2014, the Conservatives carried Stourbridge over Labour (albeit by only 600 or so) whereas the Conservatives finished third in Dudley South behind UKIP and Labour.

  9. Pedantry accepted :-) (Drat these boundary reviews!)

    My comments about the wards were based on the 2014 local election results. In those UKIP won Wordsley with the Conservatives just one vote ahead of Labour and UKIP also won Amblecote , with the Conservatives in 2nd place and Labour only about 100 votes behind that : so fairly close 3 way contests.

    And I do agree that the Conservatives should hold Stourbridge – but if, to come back to my original posting, they have doubts about their position in Dudley South, that does suggest a tight contest in Stourbridge too.

  10. Just had a leaflet from our Conservative candidate for Morley which says –

    “Ed Miliband would need to be propped up by the SNP in government, with Alex Salmond the likely Deputy Prime Minister”

    (Has anybody told Alex Salmond this?)

    Is this now national “scaremongering” or is it just my local Tory candidate?

  11. Alex Salmond is not even an MP yet. The leader of the SNP at Westminster is Morayshire MP Angus Robertson. I understand that Salmond is not intending to replace Robertson as the leader of the SNP group though I would imagine that the current group of 6 will be heavily outnumbered by new members.

  12. it is a strange tactic in a way & l wonder how many voters are likely to be influenced by it.

  13. I definitely think that the Labour being propped up by the SNP argument will have some traction and will help the Tories in England and Wales to some extent. Although Alex Salmond will not become deputy prime minister and the SNP will not go into full coalition with them, in order to pass legislation in the next parliament Labour will be reliant on SNP votes the likely seat numbers will dictate this. The SNP holding any power or influence in the UK parliament is I imagine a very unpopular idea with the British electorate.

  14. The SNP has only one thing in mind and that’s independence. If Labour can’t form a good majority (which they aren’t projected to by any stretch) they are better off in opposition again so that they can regroup and try to win back support with a better leader. It has been said that government is going to be hell for which ever party has the largest number of seats, but with no majority on the horizon, it’s almost as if being the main opposition is easier.

    The Conservatives would have UKIP, DUP and maybe the Lib Dems to negotiate with, but even that would be easier than Labour trying to budge the SNP on certain issues.

  15. Yes the SNP’s goal is independence so they will use this chance in a lifetime opportunity to bring it closer. They almost certainly will vote down a Tory government, anything else would be portrayed by Labour as the SNP propping up a Tory government which would be detrimental to their new found support in traditionally solidly Labour areas.

    What they will probably do is agree to prop up a Labour government on a confidence and supply basis. Initially they will probably start with a façade of compromise and ‘working together’ but as time goes on they will keep upping the stakes making increasingly outrageous demands in return for their support. Labour, who will be desperate to hold power, will keep giving them exactly what they want up until a point that the demands are so ridiculous that Labour will be forced to say no.

    The SNP will then flounce off in a mock strop and will tell the Scottish people that Labour is anti-Scottish. It is also likely the English public opinion and the media will have become very hostile towards the government by this point and Labour will be portrayed south of the border as favouring Scotland causing a rise in anti-Scottish sentiment in England which will in turn fuel nationalistic resentment in Scotland.

    It is a win, win for the SNP they can bully Labour in to giving them many, many more powers for Scotland and they can drive a wedge between Scotland and the rest of the UK.

  16. The main British parties have once again shown their idiocy by not getting an assurance from the SNP before the referendum that there wouldn’t be another plebiscite for at least ten years. In their usual arrogant and complacent way they probably just assumed this would be the case so didn’t press the SNP on it. They should have done so. Now the SNP can once again threaten a vote if they don’t get their way after May 7th.

  17. And of course the Tories will probably be back in power by 2020 on the back on the minority SNP backed Labour government’s unpopularity. The Tories will of course be vocal critics of Labour ‘favouring Scotland’ and will make a lot of populist capital out of promising to put England first. When they get back in to power the Tories will do a lot of things that could be perceived as anti-Scottish, budget cuts etc. which will be widely supported in England. Scots will then feel bullied and isolated and hence nationalistic resentment goes up further. Plus it is worth noting that a chunk of the heavily pro-union over 65’s will have died by then.

  18. I have just posted on Labour Targets suggesting that Labour may be doing comparatively badly in seats in the Englsh provinces outside the inner cities, in other words in what might be described as “semi-detached land”. Many of these seats are currently held by the Tories as marginals; but a significan number of them -places like Chorley and Telford, for example- are on the list of Tory targets. Even without a national swing from Labour to the Tories (which I personally as expecting), this could give the Tories the twenty seats they need for a majority.. I believe there is a simple reason why this differential swing is likely to occur, but I feel intimidated from saying it.

  19. Frederic: I agree with your first assertion that Labour are probably not doing well in England outside metropolitan areas, but disagree that the Tories might be able to win seats like Chorley and Telford. I don’t think Labour will do sufficiently badly relative to the Tories.

  20. “I believe there is a simple reason why this differential swing is likely to occur, but I feel intimidated from saying it.”

    you bang on and on about immigration and ghettoisation. I am glad you’re intimidated, because your posts are full of coded, somewhat racist, innuendo…not very pleasant frankly.

  21. Miliband has now ruled out a coalition and any SNP Ministers. I was amused to see the First Minister rushing on tv to say the SNP could still do a deal with Labour to keep the Tories out!

  22. Who would have thought the SNP would be so desperate to get their hands on power in Westminster. You would have thought running Scotland would have been enough for them.

  23. None of this anti-SNP campaigning that’s going on is doing the long-term health of the Union much good.

  24. “I was amused to see the First Minister rushing on tv to say the SNP could still do a deal with Labour to keep the Tories out!”

    labour and snp are playing an amusing game. labour need to convince scottish voters in scotland that a vote for the snp is a vote for the tories, while the snp have to convince those same voters you can vote for us and still keep out the tories….

    so labour have to distance themselves from the snp, while secretly relying up on them, while the snp have to do the opposite; outwardly they have to pretend to be labour’s best friend in the context of westminster politics, but privately I don’t think they care who gets in.

  25. And English voters are not amused by the whole spectacle.

  26. The Sun is reporting that Baroness Warsi may defect to Labour! Wonder if this is true?

  27. Surely she’d find it easier as a crossbencher. Her days as the Conservatives’ most prominent minority face are over, but she was hardly warm to Labour in a number of instances while chair of the Tories.

  28. that’s part of the job description though.

  29. ‘labour and snp are playing an amusing game.’

    A dangerous game too

    Over the past week I’ve meet a couple of middle-of-the-road voters – who backed New Labour in 97 and 2001 – who have said they will be voting Tory precisely because of the possibility of the SNP holding any Labour government to ransom

  30. I imagine it wouldn’t be too hard for her to make the necessary readjustments.

  31. ” I imagine it wouldn’t be too hard for her to make the necessary readjustments.”

    Are peers allows to defect to another party?

  32. Yes of course they are. Plenty of examples to choose from including quite high profile ones like George Brown.

    Warsi is very damaging for other Asian Tories because she reinforces the stereotypes that muslim politicians have no party loyalty. I’m not really sure that Labour will want her.

  33. ‘Warsi is very damaging for other Asian Tories because she reinforces the stereotypes that muslim politicians have no party loyalty.’

    That’s true but I’d argue that it damages the Tories, as it reinforces the stereotype that British Muslims have no place in today’s Tory Party

  34. “Over the past week I’ve meet a couple of middle-of-the-road voters – who backed New Labour in 97 and 2001 – who have said they will be voting Tory precisely because of the possibility of the SNP holding any Labour government to ransom.”

    There is no benefit to the Conservatives of Labour seats being won by the SNP because the new members will either back Miliband (albeit hold him to ransom) or vote down a minority Conservative government.

  35. ‘There is no benefit to the Conservatives of Labour seats being won by the SNP because the new members will either back Miliband (albeit hold him to ransom) or vote down a minority Conservative government’

    These are English voters I’m talking about

    Fear of the SNP calling the shots in any future Labour-led administration is certainly a vote winner for the Tories South of the border

  36. My observation of the campaign in Vale of Clwyd suggests that both Lab and Con are taking this fight very seriously.

    The posters being displayed for the Cons emphasise the title “DOCTOR” for James Davies.

    From my local knowledge, I predict the result could be very close here this time.

  37. Assuming the usual wide spread of results between individual constituencies, I have been contemplating what the most likely Conservative gain is. Most discussion has been around Itchen, but I think Telford is the best bet for a surprise gain against the trend.

  38. I would say Solihull or Mid Dorset and North Poole

  39. Most surprising would be Dumfries and Galloway

    In fact, there are three seats I think could be surprising Con from Lab:

    Dumfries and Galloway
    Morley and Outwood
    Southampton, Itchen

    All very unlikely

  40. It could turn out that the Swing between Lab and Con on Thursday could be approaching zero. But the swing could be Lib Dem to Conservative. In some seats in which UKIP have only put up a paper candidate. UKIP may only get 6%.

    As far as I can see, the Conservatives have had a well financed and well targeted target plan, and can hope and expect to win 25 of those target seats.

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