2015 Result:
Conservative: 23464 (42.3%)
Labour: 7181 (12.9%)
Lib Dem: 14317 (25.8%)
Green: 1513 (2.7%)
UKIP: 8783 (15.8%)
TUSC: 114 (0.2%)
Others: 133 (0.2%)
MAJORITY: 9147 (16.5%)

Category: Semi-marginal Conservative seat

Geography: South East, Hampshire. Most of the Eastleigh council area.

Main population centres: Eastleigh, Hedge End, West End, Netley, Hamble-le-Rice, Bursledon.

Profile: Eastleigh curves around the north and east of Southampton and is essentially the affluent, owner-occupied suburbs of the city. Eastleigh itself is a railway town, while West End and Hedge End are villages that have grown into Southampton suburbs. Netley is a quaint coastal village and Hamble a yachting centre. The constituency includes Southampton International Airport and Hampshire County Cricket team`s home at the Rose Bowl.

Politics: Eastleigh was once a safe Conservative seat, held by the the party from the seat`s creation until the death of MP Stephen Milligan in 1994. The bizarre circumstances of Milligan`s death - accidental death due to autoerotic asphyxiation - were widely publicised and came at the height of the Back to Basics series of sleaze scandals, the Liberal Democrats won the seat on a huge swing at the subsequent by-election. The by-election victor David Chigley stepped down in 2005 to be replaced by Chris Huhne, who had a a meteoric rise and fall in the party, contesting the leadership less than a year after his election, narrowing missing out on the leadership in the 2007 contest, being appointed to the Cabinet as Secretary of State for Energy, and then resigning from Parliament after he pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice by falsely claiming his wife was driving his car to avoid a speeding fine. The 2013 by-election coincided with the rise of UKIP and saw the Liberal Democrats hold the seat with UKIP in second place, but at the subsequent general election the seat fell to the Tories.

By-Election: There was a by-election in this seat in CON GAIN FROM LD. For full details see here.

Current MP
MIMS DAVIES (Conservative) Former radio producer and director. Mid Sussex councillor. First elected as MP for Eastleigh in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 21102 (39%)
Lab: 5153 (10%)
LDem: 24966 (47%)
UKIP: 1933 (4%)
Oth: 496 (1%)
MAJ: 3864 (7%)
Con: 18648 (37%)
Lab: 10238 (21%)
LDem: 19216 (39%)
UKIP: 1669 (3%)
MAJ: 568 (1%)
Con: 16302 (34%)
Lab: 10426 (22%)
LDem: 19360 (41%)
UKIP: 849 (2%)
Oth: 636 (1%)
MAJ: 3058 (6%)
Con: 18699 (34%)
Lab: 14883 (27%)
LDem: 19453 (35%)
Oth: 446 (1%)
MAJ: 754 (1%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
MIMS DAVIES (Conservative) Former radio producer and director. Mid Sussex councillor.
MARK LATHAM (Labour) Born Eastleigh. Business publisher.
MIKE THORNTON (Liberal Democrat) Born 1953, Farnham. Educated at Manchester Polytechnic. Business and development manager. Contested Eastleigh councillor since 2007. MP for Eastleigh 2013 by-election to 2015.
PATRICIA CULLIGAN (UKIP) Born Manchester. Educated at Manchester University. Businesswoman. Contested South East region 2014 European election.
RON MELDRUM (Green) Cognitive Therapist.
RAY HALL (Beer, Baccy and Scratchings) Retired businessman. Contested Eastleigh 2013 by election.
Comments - 355 Responses on “Eastleigh”
  1. Woolfe will be made a very strong favourite to win the leadership and I would agree – and expect him to triumph.

  2. I saw Stephen Woolfe on Question Time the other day and he was pretty impressive IMO. Also, of course, the racism charge that people like Corbyn and McDonnell love putting to UKIP will be a lot more difficult to sustain with Woolfe as leader.

  3. Good grief there is a lot of love for Stephen Woolfe here…

  4. Apparently Diane was assaulted at Waterloo station yesterday – the event that caused her to resign – and the attack has been covered up by the “liberal MSM”.

    Maybe I should stop reading Guido.

  5. The Guardian mentions that she was spat at.

  6. Right wing leaders have had to put up with that sort of thing since time immemorial. A feeble excuse. Obvious that she agreed to be a stop gap for a week or two to prize Woolfe – Farage’s favoured successor – into the leadership. Note her suspiciously late entry into the race after repeated denials of interest.

  7. Am I right in thinking Suzanne Evans would now be free to stand too? So it’s likely to be Woolfe, Evans and any of the MEPs who still haven’t realised they have no electoral appeal at all.

  8. ‘Right wing leaders have had to put up with that sort of thing since time immemorial’

    True. But I wonder if this will be added to the ‘hate crimes’ data which the left are obsessing over.

    I’m pretty sure this is a stitch-up btw – typical UKIP party games/

  9. NEXT UKIP LEADER odds:-

    WOOLFE is 1/2 with HILLS & LADBROKES and shorter at PPOWER – 4/9.

    EVANS & NUTTALL are both 5/1 while FARAGE is 10/1. NUTTALL is not favoured at PPOWER he’s at 12/1 there.

    I admit to having had a small investment on WOOLFE.

  10. “True. But I wonder if this will be added to the ‘hate crimes’ data which the left are obsessing over.”

    It should be.

    Apols if I have posted this here before but I went to see Eric Forth speak at LSE in around 1995 and he got absolutely covered in eggs & flour. Speaking to him about that day some years later he said it had all been great fun and that he’d met some gorgeous girl that day. It was obviously something he was used to and took in his stride.

  11. If I was still a member I’d be happy with either Woolfe or Evans.

    Evans though would be subject to a pretty nasty smear campaign in the event of her standing for the leadership – by the likes of Raheem Kassam, and the membership wouldn’t vote for her in sufficient numbers as a result.

    Criticising gay cure candidates like Alan Craig didn’t go down well and she was thrown under the bus as a result.

  12. Any odds for Carswell, Deepthroat?

  13. Shortest 16/1 at HILLS and as much as 33/1 at PPOWER

  14. Given that it’s now come to light that Diane James wrote on her filing papers for leadership (I can’t work out if this is the ones that you fill in before or after the leadership election), the words “under duress” – in Latin! – it’s quite clear that she never wanted to be leader.

    The idea that it gave Woolfe a way back after all is as plausible a reason as any for her motive for standing I suppose.

  15. WOOLFE quickly shortens to 2/5. The first sign confirming that he is the heir assumptive, is that he is to be interviewed by Eddie Mair on the PM programme shortly.

  16. Woolfe clearly a good choice. He was very good on Question Time last week though totally echo Tristan’s point about how easy it is to look good when sat next to Priti Patel and Richard Burgon. Especially, if I may say so, Burgon, whose Yorkshire accent is so camp he sounds like a poundshop Keith Lemon impersonator (looks a bit like one as well). I thought I was seeing things when people on here and PB suggested him as a possible successor to Corbyn.

  17. Rumours that Woolfe nearly joined the Tories over the weekend. That won’t upset the natives, given how hostile many UKIP members are towards other parties lately.

    Raheem Kassam has apparently entered the race….

    Burgon… does sound either incredibly camp or shouting his head off at ‘Blairite Tory scum’ or whatever. Patel is a strange case, she’s got some interesting policy views get cant express them, and has a weird semi permanent pout going on too.

  18. Steven Woolfe has apparently been taken to hospital after being suddenly taken ill at the European Parliament.

  19. Reports that he was smacked in face – Farage was nearby it is said.

  20. Betting market on next UKIP LEADER suspended by all bookies.

  21. Apparently he was punched by a UKIP colleague and his situation is serious. Not much clarity at the moment, however.

  22. Does this also count as a ‘hate crime’?

  23. I’m not sure what Richard Burgons accent has to do with anything.

    It’s not a hate crime because he wasn’t targeted because of his race, ability or politics…so far as we know. At this point it’s ABH I would have thought

  24. I’d be careful being flippant here….reports are that he hit a window after the punch and suffered bleeding on the brain. This kind of thing can easily prove fatal as what happened to Donald Dewar showed. Easy to see how this could be the end of UKIP. They flourished as a mainstream un-racist alternative to the BNP but seemingly they are determined to emulate the BNP’s self-destruction.

  25. “I’m not sure what Richard Burgons accent has to do with anything.”

    Because people will not vote for someone who looks and sounds like a twat. See Ed Miliband for example.

  26. Best of wishes for Mr Woolfe’s recovery by the way – should have said that in my post. As I said upthread he seems a very decent kind of bloke and was UKIP’s only real hope, as Arron Banks said yesterday.

  27. Sky’s Kay Burley suggests Woolfe was punched “repeatedly.” Taken together with Hemmelig’s comments about the seriousness of his condition, it appears that the implications of this incident could be further reaching than we thought.

    Irrespective of the politics, let’s hope he makes a full and speedy recovery.

  28. Reports suggest Mike Hookem MEP was responsible for the attack. His office apparently haven’t been able to contact him (I imagine he’s in police custody if the reports are corrects).

  29. Amazingly it seems not

    “A spokesperson for the Strasbourg police said they had not been called to the parliament and no investigation had been launched so far.”


  30. UKIP suddenly making Labour look credible.

    Best wishes to Steven Woolfe. As HH said, this kind of injury can be fatal.

  31. ‘seemingly they are determined to emulate the BNP’s self-destruction.’

    I’m afraid this has always been a risk with UKIP. They inevitably attract a significant number of serious nutters and, frankly, borderline psychos.

    A close family member of mine was heavily involved with them 20 years ago and what I saw then disgusted me, hence I have never been tempted to join them even if I sympathised with their main policy. I think the situation has only got worse since.

  32. Accounts of what actually happened remain confused, so we should probably refrain from commenting much on the details.

    Even though I have no sympathy with UKIP’s political stance, I find this very sad, obviously for Woolfe and his family, but also for British politics.

    UKIP did give many people alienated from the three mainstream parties a reason to vote. But as Runnymede says (and I rarely agree with him), the party did attract many nutters, and worse.

    UKIP may now disintegrate, but there is a need for all three mainstream parties to address the concerns of UKIP voters. They can do this in different ways, proposing different policies, and not give up their principles. There will always be a small number of voters who will want to vote for nutters, but that proportion of the electorate is much smaller than those who have been voting UKIP of late.

  33. With a modicum of discipline UKIP could have been far more successful than it actually has been. But that was never going to happen, as was obvious from the word go.

  34. For one I actually totally agree with Runneymede, however much UKIP tried to put a gloss over it and whatever their intentions their main focus (immigration, leaving the EU, nationalism etc) are the exact policies that attract figures from the fascist right, a strand of politics that has always been prone to violence and general thuggery. Even with the best will in the world UKIP was always going to suffer the same problems as the BNP, EDL etc.

  35. People didn’t vote Labour because they thought Miliband looked and sounded like a twat. The difference between Miliband and more popular leader was 300,000 votes or 1.5%.

  36. “People didn’t vote Labour because they thought Miliband looked and sounded like a twat.”

    Presumably you meant didn’t *not* vote Labour?

    Obviously true for many people but it was a big factor for perhaps 5-7% of the voters. My dad, a lifelong Labour voter and retired trade union member, couldn’t bear to watch Miliband on TV and astounded me by voting Tory largely for that reason.

  37. I think 5-7% is a bit high but in my experience (maddening as it was) quite a few people didn’t vote Lab cos they though Milliband was weird, what was even more bizarre was in the final weeks of the campaign after Millafandom when suddenly the country seemed split between those who thought he was weird and those who thought he was some kind of a sex symbol…alas the former won out.

  38. “when suddenly the country seemed split between those who thought he was weird and those who thought he was some kind of a sex symbol…alas the former won out.”

    I think Islington was split between those who thought he was weird and those who thought he was a sex symbol. The rest of the country all thought he was weird.

  39. Reports now suggesting Woolfe is recovering well. Good news indeed. I do hope his assailant faces justice.

  40. Good that Woolfe is now recovering.

    Given that Woolfe apparently initiated this ‘fight’ (he apparently asked the other guy to ‘take things outside’), I do have to question his suitability for leadership. But I suspect that most UKIP members won’t care.

  41. It might end up being two bald men fighting over a comb. Arron Banks’ idea of a totally new party is probably the best that can be salvaged from UKIP.

    It doesn’t matter who started it, such a life-endangering assault when not made in self-defence almost certainly results in imprisonment. At least it does so here, we will have to see how it is handled in France.

  42. ‘I do have to question his suitability for leadership. But I suspect that most UKIP members won’t care.’

    I suspect his candidature might be slightly enhanced amongst this electorate

    I think there are many inside the party who believe the best way to settle to differences is to resort to fists

    Good that he’s on the mend though

  43. “I think there are many inside the party who believe the best way to settle to differences is to resort to fists”

    You’re probably exaggerating a bit there….UKIP is not Combat 18.

    It is more likely to damage Woolfe’s leadership bid IMO, if he goes ahead with it. Perhaps he will decide to defect to the Tories after all.

    John Prescott’s career never recovered from his punching that egg thrower – though Blair never dared remove him as Deputy PM he became an empty vessel with little real responsibility for the five or six years after that.

    This is also a good lesson that in life you should always be very careful about getting into fights no matter how handy you think you are.

  44. What is inconsistent to how strongly the Lib Dems performed in the 2013 by election against the national trend and the substantial 2015 swing to the Conservatives here.

    The Lib Dems remain strong here in local government but based on the 2015 figurers even if the Lib Dems win over 1000’s of Remain Tories the collapse in the large UKIP will benefit the Tories more.

  45. Well they only lost 6.5% more votes at GE 2015, so quite consistent with their drop in 2013, just a little more when the turnout was higher.

  46. A third LibDem Cllr (Mark Balaam) has defected to join the Independent Liberal Democratic Group.

  47. Splitter!

  48. Now the Mayor (Cllr Maureen Sollitt) and deputy mayor (Cllr Chris Thomas) have also left the LDs to join the Independent LibDem Group of 5.

    Amusingly that now gives the Ind LD Group control of the Eastleigh Town centre Local Area Committee.

  49. John Simpson has said that he believes Stephen Milligan MP was murdered.

    Interview in the Mail on Sunday.

  50. Rumours about that have been around ever since the incident itself, which I remember vividly.

    It’s gobsmacking that nobody thought to question the gaping irregularities surrounding his death. For example why he would pursue his sexual deviancy on the kitchen table in full view of his neighbours (which is how he was found).

    At the time the Tories were so damaged by sex scandals the public would believe anything of them, and in the case of Milligan’s alleged murder the perpetrators must have known that.

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