Torridge and West Devon
Conservative: 25230 (45.7%)
Labour: 2917 (5.3%)
Lib Dem: 22273 (40.3%)
BNP: 766 (1.4%)
Green: 1050 (1.9%)
UKIP: 3021 (5.5%)
MAJORITY: 2957 (5.4%)
Category: Marginal Conservative seat
Geography: South West, Devon. The whole of the Torridge council area and part of West Devon council area.
Main population centres: Bideford, Great Torrington, Tavistock, Holsworthy.
Profile: A large rural seat running down the western side of the border with Cornwall. Tourism is important along the relatively short stretch of coast in the north of the seat, which includes the steep coastal village of Clovelly, the Victorian seaside village of Westward Ho! (named after a novel and famously the only British placename with an exclamation mark) and the small port of Bideford. The rest of the seat is deeply rural and agricultural, with the main settlements small market towns like Great Torrington, Tavistock, Holsworthy. The glass manufacturer Dartington Crystal is based in Torrington, set up in the 1960s by the Dartington Hall Trust to bring employment to rural areas and now an important local employer and tourist attraction. To the south the constituency contains a large part of Dartmoor, including the prison.
Politics: The seat and its predecessors had traditionally been strongly Conservative, represented by the party since 1924. In 1995 the sitting Conservative MP, Emma Nicholson, defected to the Liberal Democrats. While Nicholson herself did not contest the next election (instead going on to become a Liberal Democrat MEP), the seat stayed in Liberal Democrat hands in the form of John Burnett. Burnett remained the MP here until 2005, but failed to pass his majority onto his successor after his retirement, with the seat returning to the Conservative fold. In 2010 was one of four seats where UKIP finished third (the others being North Devon, North Cornwall and the Speakers seat in Buckingham).
*There were boundary changes after 2005
**There were boundary changes after 1992