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
portrait
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.
portrait
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.
portrait
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
portrait
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.
portrait
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
portrait
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
portrait
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.
portrait
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.
portrait
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 Steel’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.
portrait
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.
portrait
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.
portrait
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.


.

Comments - 254 Responses on “Europe South West”
  1. Pepps
    “There will NOT be war with Spain under any circumstances”

    I hope your right but BoJo is foreign sec and our only remaining ally is President Trump…the stars are aligning put it that way.

  2. ”I hope your right but BoJo is foreign sec and our only remaining ally is President Trump…the stars are aligning put it that way.”

    Not at all we are still allied with Europe even though relations have soured a lot since Brexit but not within a country mile of war (I can’t believe people are talking about this seriously). But even then we are still on good terms with Canada, Australia, New Zealand and most of the rest of the Commonwealth. It’s only Argentina, Iran and probably a few other middle eastern countries that actually hate us.

  3. I was sat on the sofa with my Spanish partner when I read that comment from Howard. I makes me despair somewhat.

    While no one should seriously believe that the UK and Spain will go to war anytime soon over Gibraltar, for the reasons people have already pointed out. It doesn’t bode very well for Brexit negotiations. It makes our side seem snarling and thin skinned. Not only that, but it’ll just contribute to the echo chamber of views that no deal is an acceptable outcome.

  4. On another note, it’s great to see you back Rivers. I’m much more of a lurker than a poster on this site, but I enjoyed your contributions and points of view in debates. It’s always good to hear the thoughts of people who hold a different political viewpoint.

  5. Pepps
    “we are still allied with Europe even though relations have soured a lot since Brexit but not within a country mile of war (I can’t believe people are talking about this seriously)”

    I don’t think anyone seriously expects it to happen rather its indicative of a clear souring of relations and the whole Gibraltar thing is just another hurdle that we didn’t need placed in front of us. The UK had enough to deal with without reigniting territorial disputes.

  6. WJ
    Thank you 🙂

  7. A war in Gibraltar would be a disaster for all involved and would easily be won by the United Kingdom. Spain would be left in a very sorry position if they even tried it.

    Try to keep in mind the fact that the Argentine government in 1982 was a military government. Spain is a democracy.

  8. We will fight them on the beaches… particularly Ibiza, Magaluf and the Costa del Sol.

  9. Whilst I agree that Howard’s turn of phrase was hyperbole, I am frankly more amazed by the response of some.

    If Spain ever invaded Gibraltar, of course Britain would be at War.

    It’s a simple statement of fact. Although I realise some on the Left just like to go on about ‘colonialism’ etc (although they only ever apply that to Britain in the usual self-hating mode and never France or Spain who both acted imperially in the past and also have their own overseas territories).

    Rivers10 – as for the EU’s role re Argentina in 1982 – it just didn’t have one, trust me.

    As HM Queen said when Spain objected to the Royal Yacht Britannia being moored off the coast of Gibraltar: it’s my ship, my son and my dockyard!

    I realise part of being British is our under stated patriotism – compared with Americans ‘flying the flag’ etc – but I reckon if we ever were at war again, with Iran or wherever, around 20% of the Country wouldn’t even want to defend the UK.

    There’d certainly be an awful lot of conscientious objectors today amongst the ‘twitterati’ – I suppose that’s one thing we wouldn’t miss if they were all interned 😉

  10. According to opinion polls from the time roughly 80% of the British public supported defending the Falkland Islands in 1982.

  11. True. Likewise a poll showed 72% supported Gulf War I (after all in both we were merely repelling fascist regimes who had invaded sovereign territory and we became involved at the request of those under siege – though again I realise some since Gulf War II, like to retrospectively blame the West’s bombing for all ills including terrorist attacks – not that we bombed Kenya or Tunisia)

    Incidentally the Sunday Times (presumably ‘just for fun’ as it went to print the day before Howard’s phrase) pointed out that:

    * Spain spends just £5 billion on its military (0.6% of GDP) and half of that is dependent on imports from the USA.

    * By contrast, the UK spends over £59 billion each year on our military.

  12. NTY – this historic New York Times’ article refers to polls after every military intervention and seems to show that well over 70% supported each action.

    Although there are interesting differences with eg over 80% of White voters supporting military action and over 50% of Black voters opposing it.

    http://www.nytimes.com/1991/01/22/us/war-in-the-gulf-public-opinion-poll-finds-deep-backing-while-optimism-fades.html

  13. Lancs
    This has got nothing to do with the technicalities and legality of our ownership of Gibraltar, whether we would be right/wrong to defend it should Spain invade etc Rather its just an indictment on if not Brexit then our media and Lord Howard that they have been able to create a minor diplomatic incident over practically nothing. Putting aside Howards comments which I think we can all agree if nothing else were foolish the way some in our media have responded has been ridiculously jingoistic. The Scum did an article that pretty much amounted to “if we went to war with Spain we’d kick the sh*t out of them” and consequently many have correctly observed that internationally we look like a drunken middle aged bloke having a mid life crisis looking to pick a fight with anyone..

    None of it bodes well going forward…

  14. Well I wouldn’t expect a tabloid to discuss the Treaty of Utrecht!

    But seriously, 99% of the people of Gibraltar want to remain British, so it’s that fact that I find the anti-imperialists always fail to recognise.

    Given Spain’s history I find it particularly bizarre that they want Gibraltar to be given to her. This was the Hain viewpoint during the Blair era too, so it’s not just the far Left who holds that viewpoint.

  15. “But seriously, 99% of the people of Gibraltar want to remain British, so it’s that fact that I find the anti-imperialists always fail to recognise.”

    A majority of Hong Kong citizens wanted to remain British as well.

    I can’t see why those who were happy to give back a very economically successful colony against the wishes of its citizens (under a government of the right) in the same breath cling sentimentally to useless imperial relics which are hideously expensive to defend. If the 99% of Gibraltar and the Falklands don’t want to see sense on where their most sensible future lies then let them pay to defend themselves….incidentally this was almost word for word what Nicholas Ridley said to Falkland Islanders the year before they were invaded.

    That said, there is zero probability of Spain invading Gibraltar. Theresa May asked Michael Howard to sabre rattle so the tabloids and Conservative Estimate are too busy waving union jacks to notice the compromises she’ll be making in the Brexit talks….expect two years of this folks.

  16. PS welcome back Rivers

  17. HH
    Thanks 🙂

    “A majority of Hong Kong citizens wanted to remain British as well”

    I take your point on that but the historical nuances on Hong Kong are quite different from Gibraltar. Basically when China ceded it to us after the Opium wars the treaty dictated that it was a 99 year lease up for review when it expired, that lease then naturally expired in 1997 and by that point China was big and scary and we were not willing to go to war to retain it and we had no legal option to retain it diplomatically.

    But I do however think you’ve hit the nail on the head in your latter point, this and indeed the Falkland’s were/are nothing to do with respecting the wishes of the locals, its just an opportunity for Britain to try and flex some muscle and sound tough…as you also point out though in reality it just sorta looks pathetic.

  18. Lancs
    “But seriously, 99% of the people of Gibraltar want to remain British, so it’s that fact that I find the anti-imperialists always fail to recognise”

    I believe in self determination so if the islanders want to stay under British sovereignty fine, what I object to is jingoistic posturing on our part. Gun boat diplomacy hasn’t worked for us in over a century and over zealous patriotism on our part is just making us look foolish internationally.

  19. H.H you are 100% correct. I am utterly ashamed at Thatcher’s complete incompetence where Hong Kong is concerned.

  20. HH – and it’s precisely that stance that led to them being invaded.

    Incidentally, HK was merely fulfilling a Treaty obligation (essentially a long lease). In fact, the UK has failed to fulfil our obligations in protecting the rights of the Hong Kong Chinese since handover – as Patten admitted last year.

    Perhaps if someone had used gun boat diplomacy – or better still an actual one – the Falklands wouldn’t have been invaded.

    By HH’s logic – on cost alone – he’d give Lpool to the Irish Republic, Irish Traveller sites to a new State and Tower Hamlets to Bangladesh lol

    NTY – Thatcher wasn’t even in office. I agree with HH re Chris Patten’s crocodile tears at the time of handover though.

    Rivers10 – they (Gib & F) are identical in self determination terms though and always over 95% support in both territories.

  21. Has there been a recent poll of Gibraltarians? The only vote I have seen shows they really want to be in the EU.

  22. @ Lancs – She arranged the Sino-British Joint Declaration, so her administration was responsible for it.

  23. ”Has there been a recent poll of Gibraltarians? The only vote I have seen shows they really want to be in the EU.”

    They do but given a choice between leaving the EU or staying in the EU by joining Spain they’d easily opt for the former.

  24. HH

    Do you really think Theresa May or someone in number 10 calls up Michael Howard and tells him what to say on sunday talk shows?

    Do you really think this happens? Do you then think that Michael Howard says, “yes, sure Prime Minister, I’ll do just that?”

    He was an unpolitically correct old man- his references to “female Prime Ministers” was clunky and certainly not on message, who was ad libbing and trying to be a populist.

    No 10 may put upon ministers and backbenchers. howard was decidedly flying solo.

  25. “Better to be governed by London than Madrid surely”

    Why?

    The only sensible reason for Gibraltar preferring the status quo is that it is free to operate as a frankly disgraceful tax haven.

    Its day to day existence is dependent on immigrant Spanish workers who commute in and out daily through the most ridiculous draconian border controls….the island is also heavily dependent on Spain for its goods, water, electricity etc.

    Its usefulness as a military outpost is redundant in a peaceful, democratic Europe which, regardless of the hyperbole, Brexit won’t change.

  26. “By HH’s logic – on cost alone – he’d give Lpool to the Irish Republic, Irish Traveller sites to a new State and Tower Hamlets to Bangladesh lol”

    Liverpool and Tower Hamlets are not disputed territories over which another state has had a territorial claim for hundreds of years.

    How would you feel if Liverpool had been ceded to Spain 300 years ago….wouldn’t you think that it would be more sensible in this post-imperial age to return it to the country it geographically belongs to?

  27. ”The only sensible reason for Gibraltar preferring the status quo is that it is free to operate as a frankly disgraceful tax haven.”

    @H.Hemmelig

    Doesn’t Britain basically let Gibraltar do mostly whatever it wants in a way Spain most certainly wouldn’t? I imagine being able to operate effectively as a microstate with Britain responsible for defence and foreign affairs is far preferable to Gibraltans than being absorbed into Andalusia. Plus Spain is not exactly doing very well economically at the moment with 50% or so youth unemployment.

  28. It’s Howards comments that are most causre fotr concern – suggesting we go to war with Spain

    As one of his staunchest allies whilst he was Tory leader, I’m not surprised May has attempted to laugh it off – what else can she do – but it reminded me why he was such a disliked politician

    It was absolutely no surprise that the Tories rocketed up in popularity the very minute he stepped down in 2005/06

  29. Spain has its own city enclaves that it needs to worry about (Ceuta and Melilla in North Africa). It doesn’t want to push the idea of Gibraltar being Spanish too far and risk loosing them.

  30. Andrew111 – yes, 2 and in both more voted for Britain than for Remain in the EU Ref.

    Which is why even Jack Straw couldn’t force joint sovereignty on Gib.

  31. HH – it managed to cope for years when the border was closed – plus that’s no longer the case re many goods since there are far more flights to Gibraltar (unlike the Falklands).

    Incidentally a lot who commute in and out daily are Brits living in Spain as there’s no room left to live in Gibraltar. It’s the Spanish who cause delays at the border periodically with their go slows, not us being draconian.

  32. TJ – but Howard didn’t say that.

    But his line worked, as you’re all so incensed by merely facts and logic ie if B invades C, A will be staunch in the defence of C, as she was previously.

    I realise some are opposed to any militarism and others oppose any action by Britain.

    I sometimes wonder how large a % in the West (upto 20% perhaps) would still blame America, if eg N Korea fired a nuke and the USA responded.

  33. Michael Howard’s comments were absurd. One simply does not entertain the notion of war between NATO allies.

  34. I agree with your second sentence (excepting Turkey perhaps).

  35. It depends on how the US responded. If they adopted what i presume would be your preffered option of flattening and killing as many civilians as possible, i think there would be more than 20% in the West who would oppose it

  36. “Allies in name only, Spain would snatch Gibraltar if they could”

    Plop
    It’s vacuous comments like that which contribute to bad feelings and mistrust towards EU states. It wont get us anywhere in negotiations. Spain is one of the last countries we want to piss off considering the status of over 300,000 British citizens in the country.

  37. WW – you make my point for me with that very response.

  38. Maxim is predicting war with Spain and a snap election this year. Not gonna happen.

  39. I could be embarrassingly wrong on this but I don’t think there will be an early election and if there is it wont be until 2019. May had her chance for an early election and she didn’t take it, now there is no justification for it and it would just look opportunistic. The only development that could occur that would mandate one is if Parliament rejects the deal she comes back with after negotiating with the EU, thus a two year wait at least.

  40. Ye gods

    Only a week into the Brexit negotiations and the Sun’s front page is Up Yours Senors! As the government masquarades its Brexit induced bowing and scraping to the Saudis with manufactured outrage over easter eggs.

    Meanwhile, on planet UKPR, we have Plopwellian Tory, who couldn’t fight his way out of a paper bag, salivating over sending other people to war on his behalf.

    And we have Lancs Observer getting excited about who will be to blame if North Korea fires a nuke and the US responds, totally oblivious to the fact that we will all be dead under such a happy scenario.

    Only another two years of this to go folks.

  41. It was more that it’s self evident that whoever fires the first nuke is to blame and yet STILL some on here would still blame America for depending S Korea.

    Incidentally no idea why you think we’d all be dead.

    I imagine N Korea would be the only Country no-one would miss (except the Peter Taaffes of this world).

    HH – you’re as delusional as Farron if you’re starting to blame any News event on the Leave vote. Get over it!

  42. “Incidentally no idea why you think we’d all be dead.”

    I’ll give you a clue then….do you think China would allow the US to explode a nuclear weapon just the other side of its border without retaliating?

    And in any nuclear attack on the US we would be obliged to join the war on their side as per our NATO obligations hence any retaliation would also quite likely target us and all the NATO allies.

  43. “HH – you’re as delusional as Farron if you’re starting to blame any News event on the Leave vote. Get over it!”

    If you’re seriously trying to tell me that the posturing over Gibraltar isn’t a direct consequence of the Leave vote you must be a total halfwit.

    People like you and Plopwellian Tory can shout “get over it” as much as you like but nothing can obscure the fact that the Brexit promises your side made are collapsing like a house of cards and those of us who opposed that campaign have every right to voice our opinion.

    We were told there would be no tariffs, free trade and no more contributions to the EU (leaving £350m to be spent on the NHS) because “they need us more than we need them”. Shown in a very short time to be a pack of lies.

  44. Well they do say you know someone’s lost an argument when all they have left is insults.

    HH – every prediction made by DC, GO, the BoE, CBI, Clegg & Blair all failed to materialise. No sudden shock, no extra £2k pa worse off in the next year- instead we’ve had record FTSE levels (and FTSE 250 – remember that better measure YOU told us all to check on here in 6 or 9 months’ time), ever falling unemployment figures, record employment figures, rising retail sales, good optimism figures in each sector.

    In fact every prediction you made, yes YOU personally HH has been proven to be false.

    Indeed as Andrew Neil said to Alistair Campbell – “you’re becoming delusional [in the face of all those facts] if you think that Leavers regret their vote. Quite the opposite is true. Plus most Remain voters have now come to accept it”

    At least some such as Carney and Straw Jnr now admit that the dire warnings were false.

    On the contrary, Art 50 has been triggered, we’ll be saving £Billions (and not just on MEPs and staff and that gravy train) from 2019 onwards.

    Even Farron has conceded we won’t be paying any EU contributions after 2020. Indeed under David Davis’s proposal it would be unlawful to do so [not that I’m a fan of the DC-esque binding by enshrining any payments into a law whether it’s overseas aid or a ban on income tax rises].

  45. HH – as for Gibraltar, a Tory MP yesterday reminded us that DC did indeed (‘posture’ in your words) on Gibraltar in 2013 and so no it’s not as a consequence – it’s as a direct consequence of Spain seeking a veto from the EU.

    Any British PM should stand up for British territory. Just a shame TB didn’t seem to want to.

    I don’t know any Western military experts who share your view re N Korea either. By defending S Korea, the USA could well simply respond by either knocking out the missile or responding conventionally. But again, if N Korea fired first I am simply amazed that anyone questions the legitimacy of the US responding.

    I see only 5% prospects of any nuclear firing (other than a test) in our lifetime. Far lower than during the ’70s or ’80s. But if there is and the result is a response – by conventional or nuclear means – and it meant the obliteration of Iran or N Korea, then yes, that would be acceptable to 80% of the West, as responses have been as the NY article detailed.

  46. HH – As for “they need us more than we need them” – it doesn’t really matter whether you believe it or not, but it is a fact on imports v exports.

    You – and Hezza – seem to be stuck in a time prior to the year 2000.

    Yes back then 54% of our trade was with the EU.

    But its been declining ever since to just 44% 2 years ago (even with all of those new EU countries since 2004).

    We exported £222 Bn to the EU (but £288 Bn outside).

    It’s another reason why SME owners voted Leave. Over 94% of UK businesses don’t export and yet 100% had to put up with any and every EU regulation.

  47. Is Lancs Observer another parody account of Conservative Estimate’s?

    This is not a site for whether or not Brexit was right or wrong, nobody wants to read any of that crap on here.

    H.H. I would suggest you would avoid falling for Lancs bait.

  48. NTY UK – I think anyone reading HH’s post above would reasonably say he was baiting me with his post, quite apart from the insult.

    Plus (again as I often have to point out on here), I was merely quoting facts – given HH’s belief – not arguing a case over 9 months after the event.

  49. Play nice!

Leave a Reply

NB: Before commenting please make sure you are familiar with the Comments Policy. UKPollingReport is a site for non-partisan discussion of polls.

You are not currently logged into UKPollingReport. Registration is not compulsory, but is strongly encouraged. Either login here, or register here (commenters who have previously registered on the Constituency Guide section of the site *should* be able to use their existing login)