South West European Region

2014 Election
2014 Results
1. William Dartmouth (UKIP) 484184 32.3% (+10.2%)
2. Ashley Fox (Conservative) 433151 28.9% (-1.4%)
3. Julia Reid (UKIP) (242092)
4. Julie Girling (Conservative) (216576)
5. Clare Moody (Labour) 206124 13.7% (+6.1%)
6. Molly Scott Cato (Green) 166447 11.1% (+1.8%)
. (Liberal Democrat) 160376 10.7% (-6.5%)
. (Independence from Europe) 23169 1.5% (n/a)
. (English Democrats) 15081 1% (-0.6%)
. (BNP) 10910 0.7% (-3.2%)
Current sitting MEPs
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William Dartmouth (UKIP) Born 1949. As the Earl of Dartmouth he was a Conservative member of the House of Lords until the exclusion of hereditary peers. Defected to UKIP in 2007. MEP for South West England since 2009.
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Ashley Fox (Conservative) Born 1969. Educated at the Kings School, Worcester and Bristol Polytechnic. Solicitor. Contested Bath 2001. Bristol councillor 2002-2009. MEP for South West England since 2009.
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Julia Reid (UKIP) Born in London. Educated at John Bentley School and Bath University. Research biochemist. Contested South West Region 2009, Chippenham 2010. Former member of the SDP. MEP for the South West since 2014
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Julie Girling (Conservative) Former Cotswold District councillor. Former Gloucestershire County councillor. Contested South West in 2004 European elections. MEP for South West England since 2009.
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Clare Moody (Labour) Trade union officer. Contested South West region 2004 European elections, Salisbury 2005, Wiltshire police commissioner election 2012. MEP for the South West since 2014
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Molly Scott Cato (Green) Born 1963, Wales. Educated at Oxford University. University professor. Stroud councillor since 2011. Contested Preseli Pembrokeshire 1997, 2005, South West region 2009 European election. MEP for the South West since 2014

Full candidates for the 2014 European election are here.

2009 Election
2009 Results
1. Giles Chichester (Conservative) 468742 30.2% (-1.3%)
2. Trevor Coleman (UKIP) 341845 22.1% (-0.5%)
3. Graham Watson (Liberal Democrat) 266253 17.2% (-1.2%)
4. Julie Girling (Conservative) (234371)
5. William Dartmouth (UKIP) (170923)
6. Ashley Fox (Conservative) (156247)
. (Green) 144179 9.3% (+2.1%)
. (Labour) 118716 7.7% (-6.8%)
. (BNP) 60889 3.9% (+0.9%)
. (Pensioners) 37785 2.4% (n/a)
. (English Democrats) 25313 1.6% (n/a)
. (Chrisian) 21329 1.4% (n/a)
. (Mebyon Kernow) 14922 1% (n/a)
. (Socialist Labour) 10033 0.6% (n/a)
. (No2EU) 9741 0.6% (n/a)
. Katie Hopkins (Independent) 8971 0.6% (n/a)
. (Libertas) 7292 0.5% (n/a)
. (Fair Pay Fair Trade) 7151 0.5% (n/a)
. (Jury Team) 5758 0.4% (n/a)
. (Wai D Your Decision) 789 0.1% (n/a)
Current sitting MEPs
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Giles Chichester (Conservative) Born 1946, London. Formerly worked for his family business, publishing maps and guides. First elected as MEP for Devon and East Plymouth 1994. MEP for the South West since 1999. Former leader of the Conservative group in the European parliament, he stood down in 2008 after it was revealed he had claimed Parliamentary expenses for a family business. He was later cleared of a conflict of interest by the European Parliament.
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Trevor Coleman (UKIP) Born 1941, St Breward. Former police officer and television script advisor. MEP for the South West since 2008, suceeding Graham Booth upon his retirement. Contested Teignbridge 2005.
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Graham Watson (Liberal Democrat) Born 1956, Rothesay. Educated at City of Bath Boys School and Heriot-Watt University. Prior to his elected worked as a university administrator, head of David Steelโ€™s office and for HSBC. First elected as MEP for Somerset and North Devon 1994. Leader of the Liberal group in the European Parliament 2002-2009. Knighted in 2011.
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Julie Girling (Conservative) Former Cotswold District councillor. Former Gloucestershire County councillor. Contested South West in 2004 European elections. MEP for South West England since 2009.
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William Dartmouth (UKIP) Born 1949. As the Earl of Dartmouth he was a Conservative member of the House of Lords until the exclusion of hereditary peers. Defected to UKIP in 2007. MEP for South West England since 2009.
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Ashley Fox (Conservative) Born 1969. Educated at the Kings School, Worcester and Bristol Polytechnic. Solicitor. Contested Bath 2001. Bristol councillor 2002-2009. MEP for South West England since 2009.


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Comments - 238 Responses on “Europe South West”
  1. It’s got to be two seats a piece here for UKIP and the Tories, and one a piece for the Liberal Democrats and Labour.

    Vote share wise, I’d expect UKIP on 27% or so, the Tories on around 25% with Labour and the Lib Dems both at around 12%.

  2. It’s got to be two seats a piece here for UKIP and the Tories, and one a piece for the Liberal Democrats and Labour.

    Vote share wise, I’d expect UKIP on 27% or so, the Tories on around 25% with Labour and the Lib Dems both at around 12%.

  3. I’d just ignore 111, he’s been ramping UKIP up to silly levels, and you’d be better off concentrating on more reasonable predictions.

  4. @ Clive Gropecock

    Why would Labour only get 12% in a region that includes big cities like Bristol, Plymouth and Exeter?

    We polled 8% last time and we are now about ten points stronger in the polls, so how does that add up to just 12%?

  5. Prediction:

    UKIP 3
    Conservatives 2
    Labour 1
    Liberal Democrat 1

  6. @ Robin Hood

    An increase for Labour to 12% here represents a 55% increase in real terms, on 2009. You’ve got to remember that this is Labour’s weakest region, so they’re starting off from a tiny base and hence their % pts increase is not going to be as high as in regions where they have more strength.

    So a leap from 7.7 to 12 isn’t particularly outlandish. Although, hell, who knows, maybe they’ll have an amazing night here and poll 13%..

  7. I do get your point, CG. However, Labour’s 2009 result was unnaturally low. Its natural base of support is higher than that, and it was the only the circumstances surrounding that election which reduced it to such a level. All things being equal, it has a much better minimum level of support here.

    Even more importantly though, urban Labour areas like Exeter didn’t have local elections that day, but do now. Since people are more likely to come out for that, and it’s easier to mobilise supporters for the Euros in confined urban areas, that will see the party through to regaining a seat here.

  8. CP is being deliberately obtuse.

    Labour polled 14.5% in this region in 2004, even though we only polled 22% nationally.

    In 1999 we polled 18.1% in the South West (an election in which we polled only 28% nationally – roughly the same as the national Euro polls are giving us this time).

    If we can collapse from 18.1% to 14.5% to 7.7% when we are in government then why on earth can we not bounce back to 18% again now we are out of government? On what basis can anyone seriously claim Labour will only poll 12%?

    Peter Kellner was correct – the proportional loss hypothesis is a fraud.

  9. Robin – in the 1999 Euro campaign, UKIP were still small game and so it was very much a three-horse-race. Now, we have UKIP adding to the mix in a major way and obviously votes are being drawn from all the major parties.

    As you say, in 1999, Labour polled 28% to the Tories’ 36%. This is despite the fact though that opinion polls from the time showed Labour support to be in the early 50s, with the Tories floundering below 30%. I struggle to see how you can possibly believe that Labour are going to be at (or even above) their 1999 level.

    Labour may surprise us all, and increase their support here by more than the national average. But I still doubt that they’ll win more than one-in-seven votes.

  10. Peter Kellner is that terribly boring man that the BBC invite onto the Election programme isn’t he?

  11. Awkward moment when CG insults the head of YouGov, who operate this site…

  12. No, it’s alright, he’s my brother-in-law. Just joshing you Peter ;P

  13. Clive overlooks the fact that Labour’s underperformance in the 1999 Euros was due to them being in government.

    But Labour ALWAYS underperform in those situations.

    Guess what – we are not in government now!!

    Anyway, time will tell if his 12% prediction is correct.

  14. ‘Clive overlooks the fact that Labourโ€™s underperformance in the 1999 Euros was due to them being in government’

    I take the point but I don’t think it was all due to that

    This was the first time when Tory MEP’s ran a properly Euroskeptic campaign in a European election. ‘ In Europe but not run by Europe’ I think was the slogan, which was clearly preferable to the public than Labour’s support of the single currency in principle

    Turn out was of course dire – largely down to the horrendous PR system introduced, which allowed these extremists that now dominate the news to get a foothold in the first place

    But I think the Tories won on their own merits which in many ways did Labolur a favour as the victory clearky went to Hague’s head who from then on thought he could win the 2001 general election with his core vote strategy – explaining the shift to the Roght after all the talk about modernisation from 97-99

  15. 1999 was also the last time UK European Parliament elections took place on a day when there were no local elections anywhere. That undoubtedly negatively effected turnout.

    Certainly the electoral system also had a negative effect. The latter might have been mitigated had the government of the day accepted demands from the House of Lords that open rather than closed lists be used.

  16. “Awkward moment when CG insults the head of YouGov, who operate this siteโ€ฆ”

    Technically speaking Stephen Shakespeare is the head of YouGov, and they don’t run the site (it’s 100% owned by me and operated by me in my spare time, my day job is at YouGov). So you were only wrong on both counts ๐Ÿ˜‰

  17. oh, and Peter obviously isn’t boring either.

    ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. “So you were only wrong on both counts ๐Ÿ˜‰ ”

    You know what, let’s just call Anthony boring. ๐Ÿ˜›

    On a serious note Anthony, best you check the ‘Corrections’ page. Left a request there.

  19. Any predictions for how far the LD vote will fall (or rise??) and where those votes might end up?

  20. What’s the formula for the return of MEPs for a given result?

  21. It hardly matters whether Labour get 12% here or 18%. It is obvious that they will get enough votes to win back their seat and equally obvious that they will not win enough for 2 seats. This is one of the most predictably boring regions as with an even number of seats it doesn’t even make any difference who tops the poll (unlike in say the East of England) so both UKIP and Tories will win 2 seats either way with LDs and Labour taking 1 each

  22. Exactly what Pete says.

  23. @ PETE

    It would be a boring region if everyone agreed with your analysis.

    They don’t.

    There is, in fact, a lot of media talk about the Lib Dems possibly winning no Euro seats at all – and that patently implies that they may not win one in the South West.

    I’m not saying that is going to happen (and it could be argued that it would be bad for democracy if it does happen) but it is a possibility.

    Previous contributors to this thread have suggested that either UKIP or the Tories could win three seats (although admittedly Van Fleet’s estimate of a 3-seat haul is rather undermined by the absurdity of him inventing a mythical 7th seat for this Euro-constituency).

    Certainly if either centre right party does achieve that 3-seat total then it pretty well assures a zero seat result for the Lib Dems.

  24. In order for that to happen they would have to win more than 3 times as many votes as the LDs which is not feasible. For example 12% would be a very poor score for the LDs here and I doubt they will fall that low but if they did then the leading party would need 36%+ to take the third seat.
    The fact that the media discuss certain possibilities is no indication that they are real possibilities – it is just an indication that the media is peopled by fucking muppets. The LDs are very unlikely to lose both their seats in the SE either

  25. The irritating thing about that prediction is that when the LDs hold on to one or two seats, they’ll spin it as some sort of victory that they didn’t crash quite as hard as they could have.

    Which is a bit like celebrating that when you were executed, your blood splatter didn’t make too much mess.

  26. I don’t think they’ll go below 4 seats. They should hold one in the NW too and I’d make them slight favourites to hold their seat in the East. London could be tricky as they’re more likely to slip behind the Greens there

  27. Some common sense at last

  28. Pete might be correct.

    Time will tell.

    Even so, I’m reasonably confident that we can out-poll the Lib Dems here and in answer to his earlier comment it actually DOES matter if Labour polls 12% or 18% because whilst both figures will probably only yield one seat, an 18% share will be of more help to us in beating UKIP and the Tories in terms of the nationwide popular vote – and that’s something the media will have its eye on.

  29. I, too, think that the LDs will cling on to enough seats to be able to claim it wasn’t the wipeout some were predicting, but to do that, they will have to be campaigning on the ground (since they don’t have the billboards budget of UKIP). I have seen precious little sign of them campaigning on the ground where I live (different region): has anyone seen much evidence of them? Probably there are some isolated council wards up for election here-and-there with activity (even if there is precious little sign in an LD-held ward in my home town).

  30. Are you still based in Bedford Ben? There are of course no local elections anywhere in Bedfordshire this year but there are more than isolated council wards in parts of the region. In Hertfordshire 8 of the 10 districts have elections including in every ward in Watford, Three Rivers and St Albans and I can certainly vouch for there being plenty of LD activity on the ground in these areas (I susepct rather less in eg Broxbourne and Hertsmere). I would tend to assume that they will be active in those other districts with local elctions where they are well organised such as Cambridge and Colchester

  31. My expectation would be for the Lib Dems to hold onto their seat, Labour to regain theirs, and either 2 seats each for UKIP or Conservatives, or a Conservative rally to pick up the 6th seat at the expense of UKIP (ie just 1 seat for UKIP).

    I fully expect Labour & Lib Dems to take the 4th/5th seats, so there’s no chance of them losing out to a 3/2/1 result where one of them finish “7th”. To be honest, I also expect UKIP to take the last seat; so Con 2, UKIP 2, Lab 1, LD 1.

  32. The Greens only need a small increase in vote on last time to take the last seat.

    Labour will take one, Tories will drop back and probably lose one, the LDs may well lose their seat.

  33. I think Con 2, UKIP 2, Lab 1 LD 1 is the most likely outcome in the South West, but with several polls showing UKIP support nationally at 4 times the level of LD support, it isn’t beyond the bounds of possibility that they could end up with 3 times the LDs’ support in the South West.

  34. I agree with Pete re the LibDems here but not in the North West. I think they’ll only manage 6-7% there at most.

  35. Pete, yes I am in Bedford, where we have the LDs notionally defending a seat in a council by-election, but with no sign at all of LD activity beyond one newspaper that seems to be going out indiscriminately across the whole borough (and the election communication). I still haven’t seen a single LD or Tory poster (apart from Tory paid billboards), even where I normally expect to see them in the ward with the by-election.

    If there is so little LD activity in a ward they are ‘defending’ in a town with an LD Mayor and no other ward elections, I start to wonder just how much their organisation has fallen apart.

    As for the other parties, very few UKIP posters apart from the billboards, too, while Labour have been more active in getting posters up, but very patchy. Yes, some Green posters up, too.

  36. Hardly a clamour of people reporting frantic LD activity.

  37. Ben – you clearly believe the Greens are going to see a stupendous increase in votes this time around, outpoll all the current forecasts, and hence win lots of new MEPs across the UK.

    I’m interested though, just to check we’re not in complete disagreement, do you at least accept that the Greens will not win a seat in the North East?

  38. No, Clive, I don’t “believe the Greens are going to see a stupendous increase in votes” – perhaps a modest one, or perhaps a similar share to last time, but with a different distribution between regions. Either could _easily_ be enough for some Green gains. I do not expect the Green Party to win a seat in the North East, but I think there are plausible outcomes in a number of regions that could lead to Green Party seats in that region: for example if SW result was something like UKIP27%, Lab 20%, Tories 18%, LDs12.5%, Greens 10.5%, others 12%, Lab and Tories would both be frustrated at being on one seat, while Greens would have gained the last seat in the region, with a smaller increase than last time.

  39. And similarly if the result was UKIP 39% Con 19% Labour 18% Lib Dems 9%, UKIP would pick up 4 seats. But I think we can agree that that’s not going to happen!

  40. Vote share predictions for the SW on Thursday:

    UKIP 30%
    Conservatives 22%
    Labour 13.5%
    Green 12.5%
    Liberal Democrats 11.5%
    BNP 1.5%

  41. Which will be good enough for my good Green friend Molly to snag the last South West seat this year ๐Ÿ™‚

  42. @ Doogle

    I think the BNP could even be beaten by Mebyon Kernow.

    English Democrats polled 1.6% last time….do you think that they will be squeezed by UKIP?

  43. I would have thought UKIP will squeeze the BNP, the English Democrats and any other party further to the right than they are

  44. I’ll be voting Green in the South West this year. I prefer the Labour Party but I need to vote tactically to try and prevent UKIP increasing their number of seats here.

  45. As a former LD supporter who voted Green this time, I don’t think it’s at all impossible that others will move the same way. Nor is it impossible that the LD vote will be halved, which on its own (i.e. with NONE of those turning to the Greens) would be enough to demote them to 5th and make a seat very unlikely.

    BTW I’d love someone to do an analysis of votes won to hours of airtime devoted to each party: I have a feeling UKIP would be well behind the Greens on that one!

  46. Lib Dems have lost their seat here. I did think talk of them losing all their seats was overblown, but it actually looks like they’re on their way to a wipeout. If so, it really is a catastrophic night for them.

    2 UKIP
    2 Con
    1 Lab
    1 Green

  47. South West region:

    UKIP: 484,184 (33.40%)
    Con: 433,151
    Lab: 206,124
    Green: 166,447
    LD: 160,376
    AIFE: 23,169
    Eng Dem: 15,081
    BNP: 10,910
    TOTALS: 1,449,442

    Green party win seat in South West, no seats for LDs.

    Congratulations to the Greens.

  48. I actually thought UKIP might get even more down here. Nice to see the Lib Dems wiped out here though ๐Ÿ™‚

  49. Congrats to the Greens! Wow, I really did think that UKIP would get that 3rd seat, not much in it by the look of it between them and the Greens.

  50. This is a great night for the Tories. I was wrong in my CON to UKIP swing though I was right about Labour not doing as well as the polls suggested.

    It looks to me like the Conservatives picked up a lot of the undecided voters at the last minute.

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