Coventry South

2015 Result:
Conservative: 15284 (35%)
Labour: 18472 (42.3%)
Lib Dem: 1779 (4.1%)
Green: 1719 (3.9%)
UKIP: 5709 (13.1%)
TUSC: 650 (1.5%)
Others: 86 (0.2%)
MAJORITY: 3188 (7.3%)

Category: Semi-marginal Labour seat

Geography: West Midlands,. contained within the Metropolitan Borough of Coventry.

Main population centres: Coventry.

Profile: The six southern wards of Coventry. This includes the most affluent and middle-class parts of Coventry in Earlsdon and Wainbody, but also the post-war council estates in Binley and Willenhall and Coventry city centre. Coventry South includes the Jaguar motor works at Whitley and the University of Warwick, actually located on the outskirts of Coventry.

Politics: In its previous existance in the fifties and sixties Coventry South was sometimes won by the Conservatives, but has been held by Labour since its recreation in 1997. At a local level Earlsden and Wainbody tend to be some of the better Conservatives wards in Coventry and the 2012 local elections the only three Conservative victories in the City came in Coventry South. Until 2012 the councillor for the city centre St Michael`s ward was Dave Nellist, the former MP for the area who was expelled from the Labour party for being a member of Militant in 1991, contested the predecessor seat as an Independent Labour candidate in 1992 gaining almost 30% of the vote. He has since been a perennial candidate in Coventry North East and North West.

Current MP
JIM CUNNINGHAM (Labour) Born 1941, Rutherglen. Educated at Columba High School. Former Rolls Royce engineer. Coventry councillor 1973-1992, Leader of Coventry council 1988-1992. First elected as MP for Coventry South East in 1992.
Past Results
Con: 15352 (33%)
Lab: 19197 (42%)
LDem: 8278 (18%)
UKIP: 1767 (4%)
Oth: 1330 (3%)
MAJ: 3845 (8%)
Con: 12394 (30%)
Lab: 18649 (46%)
LDem: 7228 (18%)
UKIP: 829 (2%)
Oth: 1585 (4%)
MAJ: 6255 (15%)
Con: 11846 (30%)
Lab: 20125 (50%)
LDem: 5672 (14%)
Oth: 2453 (6%)
MAJ: 8279 (21%)
Con: 14558 (29%)
Lab: 25511 (51%)
LDem: 4617 (9%)
Oth: 4495 (9%)
MAJ: 10953 (22%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
GARY RIDLEY (Conservative)
JIM CUNNINGHAM (Labour) See above.
GREG JUDGE (Liberal Democrat)
CHRIS ROONEY (Mainstream)
JUDY GRIFFITHS (TUSC) Contested Coventry South 2010.
Comments - 71 Responses on “Coventry South”
  1. @Maxim yes the Tories would have won the old Coventry South West in 2015 by a clear but not overly large margin.

    The old Coventry South West consisted of the current Coventry South wards of Earlsdon, Wainbody and Westwood and the current Coventry North West wards of Whoberley and Woodlands. With the exception of Whoberley (which leans Labour but not overwhelmingly) the other four are amongst the best Tory wards in Coventry but even these, with the exception of Wainbody, are not safe for them (Earlsdon hasn’t voted Labour recently either but Labour does sometimes get pretty close).

    According to electoral calculus the result would have been (assuming the ward boundaries haven’t changed drastically):

    Consevative: 14,436 (41.1%)
    Labour: 11,989 (34.1%)
    UKIP: 4,529 (12.9%)
    Lib Dem: 2,112 (6.0%)
    Green: 1,476 (4.2%)
    Other: 579 (1.6%)

    Con majority over Labour: 2,447 (7.0%).

    This would make Coventry South West a tad more Tory than the country as a whole.

  2. The Boundary Commission might add a ward from the old West Midlands County before taking one from Warwickshire. Hence a ward from Solihull Borough, such as Meriden, which is massively Conservative and would swing one of the Coventry seat to marginal status. Warwickshire would likely go down to five seats from six today. The seats touching Coventry are marginal except Kenilworth and Southam.

    Coventry is probably trending against Labour. The Conservatives held the council in the 2000’s. The impact of the two Universities is probably moving the western part of the city politically. UKIP has also done quite well in other parts of the city.

  3. This notional 7.0% majority is higher than it was in 1992 when it had a Tory majority of only 2.8% (although the winning vote share is lower 45.7% in 1992 vs 41.1% in 2015). This certainly shows the Tories have held up in Coventry well especially compared to their pitiful performances in Wolverhampton and Birmingham.

  4. @Maxim yeah they aren’t perfect to be sure but they are ok to use as a guide especially as they are based on the local election results which were held on the same day. But nevertheless you can be virtually certain that had Coventry South West still existed the Tories would have won it in 2015.

  5. GT
    I examined that possibility but the wards you speak of are so geographically large it creates a weird spindly like seat stretching from rural farmland into inner city Coventry, its just bizarre, not to mention it would split Solihull authority in half meaning the authority could end up being partitioned into about five or more seats which is pretty much forbidden for such a small authority.

    I think it more likely they’ll try to add wards from the greater Coventry metropolitan area.

  6. Can they not just tack on Poplar and Exhall from North Warwickshire? It’s all real Warwickshire anyway so I can’t see the problem.

  7. Though ward sizes may well be an issue with Coventry. It looks like you’ll have seats that are either just under quota or just over.

  8. Tory
    If you go back a page you will see my proposals in which I suggest adding Exhall and Heath to NW and Whoberley from NW to South.

  9. I think Coventry was a parliamentary borough until 1918, and that the wards of the County Borough of Coventry in 1918 were

    All Saints, Bablake, Cheylesmore, Earlsdon, Foleshill, Greyfriars, Hernall, Hill Fields, Longford, Lower Stoke, Radford, St Mary’s, St Paul’s, Upper Stoke, Walsgrave, Westwood

    although the local government boundaries were re-drawn in the 1930s

  10. Potential CON gain?

  11. Matthew- yes, I think the Conservatives have a decent chance here. IIRC it narrowly voted Remain but if Labour is having a very bad night, I think it is winnable.

  12. Going into the election, it felt like this and Coventry NE were potential Tory gains. Labour’s majorities in them were not healthy at all after quite mediocre results in 2015. Better polling surely helped, and perhaps the Labour ground game was strong. Hence very respectable results. Still, Labour shouldn’t be complacent. It’s in a region that’s generally not been great for them since the last election.

  13. Sorry….I mean this and Coventry NW.

    Cov NE of course being the safest of the three!

  14. I agree. This time they broke better for Labour than the Tories- that may have been because of the national situation, or it may be due to demographics, but I’m not entirely sure.

  15. Jim Cunningham is retiring at the GE, as his octogenarian neighbour Geoffrey Robinson.

    I think that makes 40 so far (counting Benyon, not Bercow).

  16. Labour selected Taiwo Owatemi, a pharmacist from London.

    This is another seat where the NEC stitched up the shortlist eliminating all local Cllrs and ended up with not their prefered candidate.

  17. Ops, sorry. I thought I was in Coventry NW thread

    South selection was won by Zarah Sultana who works for the party regional office. She easily beat the Lambeth Cllr they put against her.
    And yes, even that shortlist was heavily criticized at local level.

  18. The Labour candidate here said she “would celebrate” the hypothetical death of Tony Blair:

    I could understand if she’d said that about Margaret Thatcher (still wrong, but understandable). But Blair? Jesus wept…

  19. Irrespective of your political leanings (and I agree that celebrating anyone’s death is beyond tasteless)…What exactly are these nutters celebrating when they celebrate the deaths of the likes of Blair and Thatcher? They both had phenomenally successful political careers. Surely the time to celebrate woyls be if they had died early in their premierships.

  20. Labour are apparently not at all confident of getting anywhere near holding South and North West.

  21. Ex Tory Cllr & current Head of Digital for the Cons in the Mids, Mark Lerigo, has been charged with poss of indecent images of children etc.

    He last stood in the locals here in 2018.

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