Croydon North

2015 Result:
Conservative: 12149 (22.7%)
Labour: 33513 (62.6%)
Lib Dem: 1919 (3.6%)
Green: 2515 (4.7%)
UKIP: 2899 (5.4%)
TUSC: 261 (0.5%)
Independent: 141 (0.3%)
Others: 125 (0.2%)
MAJORITY: 21364 (39.9%)

Category: Ultra-safe Labour seat

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

Main population centres: Croydon, Norbury, Thornton Heath, Upper Norwood, South Norwood.

Profile: This is the most urban and inner-city in character of the three Croydon seats, with large areas of dense terrace housing and municipal tower blocks. It is by far the most diverse of the Croydon seats. In the 2011 census almost two-thirds of the population were non-white and at 31% it had the second highest proportion of black residents of any constituency in the country.

Politics: The north Croydon seats were once reliably Conservative, but demographic change and the growth in the ethnic minority population has moved them decisively into the Labour column and it can now be regarded as a very safe Labour seat.

By-Election: There was a by-election in this seat in LAB HOLD. For full details see here.

Current MP
STEVE REED (Labour) Born 1963. Educated at Sheffield University. Lambeth councillor. Leader of Lambeth council 2006-2012. First elected as MP for Croydon North in 2012 by-election.
Past Results
Con: 12466 (24%)
Lab: 28947 (56%)
LDem: 7226 (14%)
GRN: 1017 (2%)
Oth: 2020 (4%)
MAJ: 16481 (32%)
Con: 9667 (22%)
Lab: 23555 (54%)
LDem: 7560 (17%)
GRN: 1248 (3%)
Oth: 1817 (4%)
MAJ: 13888 (32%)
Con: 9752 (23%)
Lab: 26610 (64%)
LDem: 4375 (10%)
UKIP: 606 (1%)
Oth: 539 (1%)
MAJ: 16858 (40%)
Con: 14274 (27%)
Lab: 32672 (62%)
LDem: 4066 (8%)
Oth: 396 (1%)
MAJ: 18398 (35%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
VIDHI MOHAN (Conservative) Born India. Transport consultant. Croydon councillor since 2005.
STEVE REED (Labour) See above.
JOANNA CORBIN (Liberal Democrat) Educated at Oxford Brookes University. Lawyer.
WINSTON MCKENZIE (UKIP) Born 1953, Jamacia. Former amateur boxer, hairdresser and publican. Contested Brent East 2003 by-election as independent, Croydon North 2005 for Veritas, London Mayoral election 2008 as Independent, Tottenham 2010 and Croydon North 2012 by-election for UKIP.
SHASHA KHAN (Green) Born Islington. Director in a family business and runs a dance music record label. Contested Croydon North 2005, 2010, 2012 by-election.
BEN STEVENSON (Communist Party GB)
LEE BERKS (Independent)
Comments - 118 Responses on “Croydon North”
  1. Thornton Heath, Selhurst and Broad Green have been very grotty areas for many decades now. They would have mostly voted Labour in the 1970s and 1980s unless it was an exceptional Tory year as 1982 and 1983 both were.

    The most massive change in north Croydon has been in the northern and eastern bits of the seat – Norbury, Beulah, Upper and South Norwood. These were nice suburbs which were very strongly Tory up to and including 1992, but have undergone substantial demographic change and are now safe for Labour. They still have their nice bits, Upper Norwood especially, but the kind of person who votes Tory no longer lives there in great numbers.

  2. Re the previous comments about the Greens, that party does still sometimes win seats in Leominster. But the point about Stroud is valid.

  3. Hardly a surprise. The Greens did have a lot of potential amongst small-c conservatives in rural areas, however their decision to become a far left party means that such voters will now never support them.

  4. I think in Stroud their vote has broadly transferred to Labour, possibly to some extent on tactical grounds, especially since 1992 when Labour came from apparently nowhere to become a serious challenger in the seat. (Labour were helped by the subsequent boundary change which removed Tetbury & its rural surrounds.)

  5. “Thornton Heath, Selhurst and Broad Green have been very grotty areas for many decades now. They would have mostly voted Labour in the 1970s and 1980s unless it was an exceptional Tory year as 1982 and 1983 both were.”

    True to a degree, although I would have said they were more “respectable Working-Class” areas in the early 80s than they are considered to be now, being heavily owner-occupied.

    The fact that Thornton Heath voted Conservative in 1982, yet in another very good Tory year (2006) they came nowhere near tells you something.

    To be frank, Thornton Heath is today considered a crime-ridden hole by many South Londoners, in the way that somewhere like Brixton or Peckham were considered as such in 1982.

    The latter areas are today, in contrast, much-improved.

  6. HH, I think the Greens still have some potential with small c conservatives, as they are not far left as you say and those on the right of the party are quite often centrist. Unless Old Labour was far-left, the Greens aren’t- the ‘Big 3’ have all drifted right. Like Old Labour, the Greens are centre-left and having to move gently towards the centre to be seen as electable because some of their more ‘revolutionary’ ideas were abandoned when Thatcherite politics became the norm. The general British population is in fact towards the left of the main parties- there is a sort of unwind in Thatcherism. Many UKIP voters for example are centrist/left-of-centre but see no other way to challenge the current political oligopoly since the Greens’ rather sensible and moderate policies are now seen as radical due to how far right this country is now. It’s all many people have known so they view other approaches, which pre-Thatcher were quite popular, as delusional/impossible.

  7. “The fact that Thornton Heath voted Conservative in 1982, yet in another very good Tory year (2006) they came nowhere near tells you something.”

    Of course Thornton Heath ward itself actually voted Independent Resident in 1982 (as it had in previous years) but the argument still stands. Adjacent wards of Bensham Manor and West Thornton that also cover the general Thornton Heath area were Tory in 1982.

    The most upscale housing (not saying much) in CR7 was within the Beulah Ward of course, Conservative until 1994.

  8. “To be frank, Thornton Heath is today considered a crime-ridden hole by many South Londoners, in the way that somewhere like Brixton or Peckham were considered as such in 1982.”

    ditto Mitcham and Catford.

    The tory inclined WWC that use to live in these place have moved out to Carshalton/Sutton, Epsom/Chessington and Chislehurst/Sidcup etc.

  9. I overheard someone saying that Steve Reed is absolutely loathed by some people when he was a councillor.

    Can anyone tell me why please.

  10. @ Christian

    I am no expert but I know that he lost to CHuka Umunna for the Streatham PPC for the last election, this was when Reed was the LAbour Group Leader and there was a large anti-Reed sentiment there at the selection meeting, from what I read. Reed also tried to get Kate Hoey deselected in Vauxhall, I’m guessing the ambition was to be their PPC there. He is quite “right wing” within the Labour party – part of Progress.

    I don’t know if it is related but when you look at the gentrification that has occurred and is occurring in Lambeth, there is always going to be people losing out, most of the time the poor who find themselves “priced out” and estates/housing associations cleared out to make way for the gentrification, perhaps some of those who loathe him, are the victims of the gentrification policies he brought in.

    In Croydon, insidecroydon, which is an independent-run blog covering Croydon and Croydon politics, it is being said that the Labour group in Croydon is experiencing “Lambethisation” especially in its pick of new Councillors and the deselection of serving Councillors – this had the effect of deselecting 3 out of 4 black female Councillors – 2 of which topped the ward’s election in 2010 Locals and one of the casualties was Louisa woodley who was the only local candidate shortlisted for the by-election PPC. I am guessing Steve Reed is probably who they think is behind all of that.

  11. Prediction for 2015-
    Labour- 62%
    Conservative- 21%
    Liberal Democrats- 6%
    UKIP- 5%
    Green- 3%
    Others- 3%

  12. Prediction 2015

    Lab – 63
    Con – 19
    Grn – 5
    LD – 5
    UKIP – 5
    Other – 3

  13. What were the wards of the old Croydon North West from 1983 to 1997?

  14. Just to say, a short item about the late Malcolm Wicks’ autobiography was in a Croydon paper:

    Apparently he wrote it in the last year of his life, presumably knowing he wasn’t well.

  15. Local election results Croydon North

    (aggregate of all votes)

    Lab 60.2%
    Con 18.5%
    Grn 9.4%
    UKIP 8.1%
    LD 2.7%

  16. Thanks HH, I was just about to ask for those. That’s a 20%+ swing to Labour since 1992 here.

    Labour are at risk in London, and urban areas generally, of an increasingly inefficient vote distribution.

    Piling up huge majorities in increasingly safe former marginals doesn’t help Labour at a general election.

    Does anyone have the constituency results for Mitcham, Ilford S, Edmonton and Hayes?

  17. Labour of course obtained a full slate of councillors in Mitcham & Morden as well as here. I make it 14 London seats which now have this, against 4 for the Conservatives, 2 of which are in Bromley (the others being Ruislip Northwood & Pinner, and Old Bexley & Sidcup).

  18. Richards point is a good one. Labours vote is undeniably pileing in safe seats. There will be very few where the tories are over 60 but plenty for labour. The seat vote discrepancy will surely be lower than in 2010.

    Am I being unreasonable in asserting this?

  19. That’s true in London but Labour still won the popular vote in all the Tory marginals in London except Harrow E, even in Enfield Southgate which was very surprising. (Except we can’t really calculate Hendon definitively, since the Colindale ward election was deferred.) Of course the Tories have a similar problem in the shires of Southern England – Labour have made far more progress in northern marginals during this parliament than in safe Tory seats in the south.

  20. I grow up here, in West Thornton ward, which tended to vote Conservative. I first voted in 1982, when Labour held only the two wards in New Addington. I would describe the area then as somewhat lower middle class, quiet and respectable, with a fairly substantial population of Asians, mostly refugees from Uganda. I haven’t been back for many years, but friends tell me that is an inner city dump on the whole, with a few still fairly pleasant pockets here and there. It is a remarkable change, but you can see similar changes in suburbs further in, such as Brixton, Lewisham and Streatham sliding down the social scale from the 50s onwards.

  21. Winston McKenzie has once again been selected as UKIP candidate for Croydon North:

    The shortlist was Jeff Bolter, Gary Carp, Elizabeth Jones, Bruce Machan, Winston McKenzie, Ace Nnorom.

  22. His interview during the local elections this year was one of the more bizarre aspects of BBC’s coverage.

  23. Looking at my post of May 24, I see I was mistaken; the Tories do not quite have a full slate of councillors in Old Bexley & Sidcup, since UKIP won one seat there. This is also true of the Romford constituency.

  24. Croydon North was notionally Conservative in 1997.

    It included all of Malcolm Wick’s Croydon North West and around half of Croydon North East (of which the Conservatives must have been 1700 to 1800 votes ahead).

    To win by 18398 much have been Labour’s largest margin of victory in any non-Labour seat.

    Did the scale of the swing from Conservative to Labour exceeded all of the North London Labour gains (Brent North, Harrow West and Enfield Southgate)?

    These were safe Conservative seats turning into Labour marginals but Croydon North seems to have been a very marginal Conservative seat turning into an Ultra Safe Labour seat in a single election.

  25. John Major came to the constituency early in the 1997 election campaign & said that the notionals made it a key marginal. It was obviously a totally forlorn hope. Re your last sentence, the same also applies to neighbouring Mitcham & Morden. The Labour majority wasn’t quite as high in 1997, but it was still in excess of 13,000 & things have got even worse for the Tories since then.

  26. I meant that the majority in M&M wasn’t as high as here in Croydon N. Duh.

  27. “Croydon North was notionally Conservative in 1997.”

    By 124 votes IIRC. So it’s possible it was already Labour in 1992 notionally.

  28. “Six hundred asylum seekers crammed into 98-bed hotel
    Local MP demands meeting after 600 asylum seekers are been found living in a hotel with just 98 bedrooms”

  29. Shasha Khan has been selected for the Green Paty, Khan stood at the 2005, 2010 general elections and the by-election. He gets his face in the local papers quite a bit and has been a leading campaigner against a planned incinerator on the Sutton/Croydon border.

  30. Winston McKenzie is a nutcase and I can’t help but feel the only reason he was selected here is because he is an ethnic minority. That said, UKIP have absolutely no chance here and will do well to keep their deposit.

  31. His interview during the local election coverage was an incoherent mess.

  32. UKIP have stuck with their policy of excluding ex-NF, BNP, Britain First etc. members, but have been less than choosy with some others. They have some quite coherent & effective performers, but the number of obviously embarrassing ones is starting to mount. Their poll ratings are just starting to slip & they could do without this sort of thing.

  33. ”Reed also tried to get Kate Hoey deselected in Vauxhall, I’m guessing the ambition was to be their PPC there.”

    Kokopops – I’m a huge fan of anyone who tries to get rid of Hoey. I’m a Labour supporter but can’t stand her! Hope she stands down in 2020.

  34. Result of last night’s selhurst by-election, following the sad & premature death of cllr gerry ryan :

    LAB – 71.5% (+19.4)
    CON – 11.6% (-2.0)
    GRN – 7.0% (-1.5)
    UKIP – 6.9% (-5.6)
    LDEM – 3.1% (-2.9)
    LAB held.
    it seems that yesterday all news was good news for the labour party.

  35. any read across for Barwell? i was talking to a tory activist who was very gloomy about london. it seems enfield north is a goner, while southgate could be too close to call.

    I can’t really see Barwell holding Croydon central…

  36. this has been a rank labour ward since 1986 (it was whitehorse manor until 2002). as such, it isn’t totally comparable to the wards where labour has made the biggest strides in recent years, which are mainly in this constituency but also include ashburton in croydon central. nevertheless, it’s near to the boundary with that seat & as a strikingly strong result for labour it’s bound to worry the tories.

  37. A trip to grim Selhurst will tell you that the Labour vote must be high there.

  38. haven’t been there in a long time as chance would have it. the last time i went was for a football match in which of all people peter schmeichel had a goal disallowed for offside! in general in fact my visits to the borough are fairly rare (i didn’t campaign in the by-election in this constituency, mainly because it was clearly safe), though i will probably have lunch here this weekend.

  39. Selhurst is not exactly great, but there are worse parts of London (some, such as Thornton Heath very nearby).

  40. Selhurst Park must be the best thing in that whole ward Barnaby!

    Other than that its a pretty dire place.

  41. The deceased councillor in Selhurst, Gerry Ryan, was Labour’s defeated candidate in Croydon Central in 2010, he died of cancer aged only 57.

  42. That is shockingly young.

    I did think the name sounded familiar.

  43. A genuine working class man who lived in Croydon all his life….predictably, he was barred from standing again in Central by an AWS.

  44. Thats equality for you…Labour style

  45. The thing about South London is that areas can vary wildly in their niceness within just a few streets.

    “Grotty” means places like the North End of Croydon, Mitcham Town Centre or Streatham High Road.

    Places like Selhurst or Streatham Vale are downmarket, but describing them as actually grotty reveals someone who has lived a very sheltered life.

  46. Selhurst is grotty and (unlike many other bits of north Croydon) always has been. Places containing huge railway depots are usually grotty – Willesden being a similar and pertinent example on the opposite side of London.

  47. H Hemmlig

    I agree that the area around Willesden Jct (actually Harlesden) is pretty nasty.

  48. it’s odd that Willesden Junction station itself is in the hammersmith constituency, but all of the houses nearby are in brent central.

  49. “The thing about South London is that areas can vary wildly in their niceness within just a few streets”

    I’d put most of London in that bracket but Selhurst is horrible and has been for decades.

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