Filton & Bradley Stoke

2015 Result:
Conservative: 22920 (46.7%)
Labour: 13082 (26.6%)
Lib Dem: 3581 (7.3%)
Green: 2257 (4.6%)
UKIP: 7261 (14.8%)
MAJORITY: 9838 (20%)

Category: Very safe Conservative seat

Geography: South West, Avon. Part of South Gloucestershire council area.

Main population centres: Filton, Stoke Gifford, Bradley Stoke, Almondsbury, Severn Beach.

Profile: Filton and Bradley Stoke stretches around the north of Bristol. Filton, effectively a suburb of Bristol, is a centre for the aviation industry. Parts for the Airbus A380 are manufactured in Airbus`s Filton plant before being shipped to Broughton for assembly. The large Bradley Stoke housing development was built in the late 1980s and now forms a dormitory suburb for Bristol. The constituency also includes the villages of Almondsbury and Severn Beach to the West, alongside the Second Severn Crossing into Wales. Bristol Filton Airport lies in the seat - it was closed at the end of 2012 and, as of 2013, its future remains unclear..

Politics: Filton and Bradley Stoke was created for the 2010 and expected to be a close three way marginal. In the event it was the Conservatives that came out top in the first election, and with the collapse of the Liberal Democrats their majority in 2015 grew to a comfortable twenty percent.


Current MP
JACK LOPRESTI (Conservative) Born 1969, Bristol. Former Mortgage broker and estate agent. Bristol councillor 1999-2007. Contested Bristol East 2001, South West region 2004 European election. First elected as MP for Filton & Bradley Stoke in 2010.
Past Results
2010
Con: 19686 (41%)
Lab: 12772 (26%)
LDem: 12197 (25%)
UKIP: 1506 (3%)
Oth: 2140 (4%)
MAJ: 6914 (14%)

Demographics
2015 Candidates
JACK LOPRESTI (Conservative) See above.
IAN BOULTON (Labour) Director of a training company. South Gloucestershire councillor since 2011.
PETE BRUCE (Liberal Democrat)
BEN WALKER (UKIP) Born Bristol. Educated at Filton High School. Formerly served in the Royal Navy. South Gloucestershire councillor since 2011, originally elected as a Conservative.
DIANA WARNER (Green) GP.
Links
Comments - 84 Responses on “Filton & Bradley Stoke”
  1. Not an official New Town, being private sector originally, from around the 1970s onwards I think.

    Labour just hung in there as the challengers in 2010, on the seat’s creation.

    In the recession of the early 1990s, I have heard Bristolians referring to this area as Badley Broke.

  2. Some of this is a little bit like Eastleigh.

  3. “Sadly Broke” was how I heard it described while I lived nearby while attending UWE in the late 90s.

  4. @Joe James B

    It’s “Sadly Broke.” 😉

  5. Surprised to see this seat described as a safe Conservative one – would it not have voted Labour in 97 and 2001?

  6. Almost certainly.

    And were the Lib Dem vote to collapse it could quite plausibly be a Labour gain in 2015.

    Categorising a seat where the Tories barely scraped over 40% in a year when they were ahead nationally by 8% as “safe” is pretty eccentric.

  7. Should have been a semi-marginal, as it does require labour to have a comfortable majority to win.

    Who can come up with better criteria for classifying seats?

  8. It does not require a comfortable Labour majority to win, if the Lib Dems vote share were to halve (as the current mid-term polls and many posters on here predict).

  9. The Tories aren’t really dominant anywhere in this seat; they just have the best-distributed vote. There doesn’t seem to be any way that the LDs can squeeze the Labour vote, if they had little success in that in 2010, but it isn’t elementary for the reverse to happen either, since the Labour vote has been dormant for quite a long time in some parts of the seat. The ball’s in Labour’s court to squeeze the LD vote down, and I think they will have considerable success in so doing, but whether it’s enough to win is debatable.

  10. I can’t quite see the LD vote collapsing here to a very low level
    and it probably will be reasonably safe for the Tories against Labour but they should not assume so.

  11. very low level here I meant.

  12. Even if Labour put on something like 12% which I think would put them in 1997 territory it would take the Tories to lose a significant number of votes.

    I can see somthing like 38-44
    33-37
    12-17

    But Labour could be said to have done rather well to have kept ahead of the Lib Dems here given some of the problems they’ve had in Bristol NW or the squeeze in the former Northavon seat.

  13. If UKIP go from 3% to say 9-10%, the Tories certainly are not going to be in the 38-44% range. More like 30-35%.

    That to me is the great unknown – it’s a good bet UKIP are going to double or triple their national vote share but it might be very uneven, with big votes in safe seats and more modest performances in marginal seats due to a stronger campaign from the other parties.

  14. UKIP currently has more councillors in this constituecny than the LDs fwiw

  15. It is indeed the great unknown.

    On Question Time last week, Melanie Phillips
    completely flattened a vile sanctimonious planted
    question
    who called the UKIP “disgusting”.

    I didn’t agree that she did it at the expensed of the Tories
    but it was good to see this screechy audience member squirm.

  16. “UKIP currently has more councillors in this constituecny than the LDs fwiw”

    That either indicates that UKIP will indeed poll strongly here, or that the Lib Dem vote will collapse (perhaps a bit of both). Neither being very good news for the Tories. I agree with JJB however that if the Tories lose here they most likely will be experiencing a significant national defeat.

  17. Yes it was a plant – I think she was seen meeting another panellist beforehand.

    I would never call UKIP disgusting atall
    but I do make the point that they make it more likely none of their poliices will be put into effect, and for a very long time.

  18. “but I do make the point that they make it more likely none of their poliices will be put into effect, and for a very long time.”

    Not just because they make it easier for Labour to win elections, but because many of the policies themselves would be impossible to enact – eg. imposing immigration controls from EU countries whilst remaining part of the EEA or EFTA.

  19. Free movement of people within the EU is one of the few policies I do like about it
    but we need to tighten up on benefits etc, and not just talk about doing it.

  20. “That either indicates that UKIP will indeed poll strongly here, or that the Lib Dem vote will collapse”

    I was being a bit cheeky as there is in fact only one UKIP councillor here who was a recent defector from the Conservatives, but there are in fact no LD councillors here so the second part may well be true (and the second part may not necessarily be untrue)

  21. I’d have thought Bulgaria /Romania could be restricted
    as there isn’t complete free movement everywhere.
    The other Eastern Europeans here have been quite a net +
    here for the most part I think.

    I suspect the Cons will recover the UKIP votes
    when we come right up against what is at stake
    but it is far from certain at this point
    and I do not take this threat lightly.

  22. I actually sort of agree about the audience plant in Question Time. I’d agree whether it was a Tory, Labour, LD, UKIP, BNP or whatever sort of plant. One of the reasons I never watch Question Time is that we tend to get endless mindless repetitions of the party line, and not the views of a section – whether representative or otherwise – of the general public.
    UKIP may be in tune with the general public on some matters, but on a very large number of other policies that isn’t the case at all. Nor is Farage their most effective spokesman – I reckon UKIP would be doing even better if they had a better leader.
    Finally, I reckon Joe’s analysis of this particular seat is probably about right. Labour almost certainly has a better change of winning here than in some other seats where they need a similar swing – e.g. Tamworth, Battersea – but at this stage the Tories are probably still favourites. If the current poll figures are still similar in early 2015, however, we might need to revisit such a judgement.

  23. I idea of free movement is ridiculous. Europe is not one country now matter how much they try to force people together. I have never wanted us outside of the EU as I do now.

    I’m not so sure UKIP voters will come back to the Tories. UKIP people are straight talking and unashamedly right wing. Cameron does not like that attitude and so we will continue to entice the middle classes and the ‘Glen in Eastleighs’ who will never vote for us regardless. At the moment the Conservative party is like a leaking tap. It cannot stop the drip of people to UKIP.

  24. To be fair to the BBC I think they do try and pick a wide selection of diferent people with different views. The panel is always fairly balanced and I actually really like Dimblebly. It’s just those on the left are the more vocal audience members while those more to the right tend not to go on the show to make sweeping statements discrediting other parties. As Tory as I am I certainly would not call a Labour politician present ‘disgusting’…the show is not a place to abuse people.

  25. I take your point, I do think there have been some benefits of EU movement though – ideally I’d like this far, but no further
    with enforced rules about benefits/health.

    I agree with your last sentence completely – and in any case they are not remotely disgusting anyway

  26. There are disgusting people in all parties, including my own. However there’s a time & a place to use such an adjective.

  27. “I idea of free movement is ridiculous. Europe is not one country now matter how much they try to force people together. I have never wanted us outside of the EU as I do now.”

    At risk of re-igniting our favourite old debate, getting out of the EU does not mean there will not be free movement, unless you get out of the EEA and EFTA as well, which UKIP are proposing to remain a member of. So their centrepiece promises on European immigration are basically a lie.

    Barnaby’s post about Question Time is superb. I used to really like it but now it just makes my blood boil and I only watch it if my wife puts it on.

  28. “I do think there have been some benefits of EU movement though – ideally I’d like this far, but no further
    with enforced rules about benefits/health.”

    That’s a good post and pretty much sums up my own view as well….although many people who don’t enjoy our middle class lifestyle will probably have a much more negative view.

    Benefit entitlement needs an EU-wide tightening and if that means reducing entitlements to our own citizens too then so be it. It will need rule changes in the EU however, which we will have to lobby hard for.

  29. ‘I’m not so sure UKIP voters will come back to the Tories. UKIP people are straight talking and unashamedly right wing. Cameron does not like that attitude and so we will continue to entice the middle classes and the ‘Glen in Eastleighs’ who will never vote for us regardless.’

    Whilst I can see the Tories continuing to suffer at UKIP’s hands in local, European and by-elections, I can’t see UKIP getting double figures in a general election, and I think the negative campaign the coalition parties are bound to wage will ensure that those people who most fear that a Labour government will bankrupt the country, will back the Tories

    Besides, whilst Cameron is foremost a pragmatist – much like Blair – talk of his liberalism is much exaggerated.

    Whilst all recent PM’s have talked about cutting benefits, he’s actually done it. He’s cut taxes for the rich, exercised his veto in Europe, trebled tuition fees and can always point his finger at his lib dems colleagues as to why he hasn’t been tougher on things like crime and immigration.

    I don’t really think there’s that much for your average right-of-centre voter to be that dissatisfied with, and I still think there’s all to play for at the next election

    I don’t think a radical shift to the Right will aid their cause

  30. Yet again Tim Jones confuses ‘your average right-of-centre voter’ with the rich.

  31. Labour should stand a very good chance here. A large part of the Lib Dems vote will have been borrowed incumbency from the former Northavon seat. They have suffered heavy losses in the FABS parts of South Gloucestershire Council, with Labour seeming to benefit (though not enough to pick up many council seats). In Thornbury and Yate, by contrast, the Lib Dems have been very resilient:

    h ttp://apps.southglos.gov.uk/elections/Results/LiveResults.aspx (South Glos local election results from 2011)

    h ttp://tinyurl.com/d6nr5bz (from 2007)

    Almondsbury, Bradley Stoke South, Bradley Stoke Central & Stoke Lodge, Bradley Stoke North, Downend, Filton, Patchway, Pilning and Severn Beach, Staple Hill, Stoke Gifford and Winterbourne wards are in FABS.

    Alveston, Boyd Valley, Charfield, Chipping Sodbury, Cotswold Edge, Dodington, Frampton Cotterell, Ladden Brook, Severn, Thornbury North, Thornbury South and Alveston, Westerleigh, Yate Central and Yate North, are in Thornbury and Yate.

  32. Bitton, Hanham, Kings Chase, Longwell Green, Oldland Common, Parkwall, Rodway, Siston and Woodstock are in Kingswood and also show some Labour gain at the expense of the Lib Dems.

  33. ‘Yet again Tim Jones confuses ‘your average right-of-centre voter’ with the rich.’

    With all due respect Richard I wouldn’t describe you as ‘your average right-of-centre voter’ – your far more intelligent for a start, but you can’t deny the correlation between hardline social conservatives and tax-cutting Thatcherites

    One of the keystone policies of the supossedly Christian Cornerstone Group is a flat tax – one of the most unChristian policies one could imagine

    i agree that it’s not necessarily logical, but the majority of those who argue for the things you believe in, also believe in being exceptionally generous to the rich, powerful and fortunate and in my opinion it’s that which makes them right wing

  34. Agree with Hannah, the Lib Dems have lost a lot of support in Patchway (although in 2011 the Tories also moved up, aswell as Labour).

  35. There are various grouplets are philosophies labelled as being on the political right:

    Many of these are total opposites of each other.

    For example:

    social conservatives vs libertarians
    wealth/business/City cultists vs small business supporters
    ‘progressive’ metropolitans vs provincial traditionalists
    government interventionists vs small governmenters

    The Cameroons are a very London dominated group they therefore tend to be wealth/business/City cultists, ‘progressive’ metropolitans and government interventionists.

    When you realise this then policies as diverse as tax cuts for the rich, minimum alcohol pricing and HS2 fit into a coherant whole.

  36. I’m curious as to why Tim Jones descrbies a flat tax as ‘unChristian’.

    Now he’s entitled to oppose it as a concept but are policies now obliged to be ‘Christian’?

  37. Incidentally Thatcher was neither a social conservative nor believed in unfunded tax cuts.

    The people demanding tax cuts now have a similar mentality to those demanding more spending.

    ‘Give me more money so that I can spend it on myself’

    or

    ‘Take it from them and give it to me’.

  38. I would be 2,(1+2), 1, 2. Yourself Richard?

  39. 2, 2, neutral, 2

    A wise Conservative leadership would aim to appeal to both sides of each line by giving each something they regard as important and making sure that none suffer anything they regard as intolerable.

  40. I agree with some of that Richard, but not all of it.
    Ideally I would be a small business only person
    but we need companies of all sizes to do well. We need small businesses, the areas outside London to do well,
    but not London or the City to do worse.

    On alcohol pricing, I totally utterly reject it as Government medling of the worst sort,
    and in the words of David Davis, it would just hit the poor pensioner or worker looking forward to their rare bottle of wine treat.
    Who the f*** (sorry) are we to tell people they can’t?
    None of our business.
    But eveb here, there are possible large small business conflicts, as of course cheap alchohol is supplied from large retailers.
    I would like to see less regulation on pubs so they can compete.

  41. Although, where I live in SW London,
    Threshers closed in the early part of the recession,
    meaning I couldn’t get my 1,000 raffles a day
    and daily bottle of port,

    but about 2 years ago,
    the shop was opened as a small business by 2 Asian
    chaps and they offer a wonderful service,
    with a deal of 2 decent Chilean mix and match bottles
    of red for £10.
    And the pubs have got better
    So here the market works!

  42. Just as Twickenham’s demography has to some extent started to diverge from that of Richmond, I now find that Richmond’s pubs are getting much worse and becoming gastros to far too large an extent, whereas as Joe says Twickenham is becoming a very good area for pubs indeed. One, the Sussex, actually has a loyalty card (buy 9 pints – no time limit – and get one free) and I use it a lot, but there are 5 other good ones within 5 minutes walk of it,even though a century ago there were at least 8 more nearby which are now closed.

  43. I think the idea of alcohol pricing is a good thing, along with gay marriage, increased foreign aid, more EU nonsense etc etc….It’s another vote winner for the Tories.

  44. A policy which helps pubs at the expense of supermarkets would be a good one. Whether that is the right policy is another matter. I would be in favour of drastic action to save our pubs, especially the best ones.

  45. “A policy which helps pubs at the expense of supermarkets would be a good one. Whether that is the right policy is another matter. I would be in favour of drastic action to save our pubs, especially the best ones”

    I couldn’t agree more Barnaby.

  46. “A policy which helps pubs at the expense of supermarkets would be a good one”.

    Yes. There should be a much higher rate of duty on alcohol sold in supermarkets and off licences than in pubs.

  47. On the subject of a flat tax, support for the idea depends on ones view of what the purpose of taxation is. Those who view taxation as a method of wealth distribution will oppose it while those who believe the objective is to raise as much money as efficiently as possible should support it. The example of Russia demonstrates that the introduction of a flat tax increases the total amount raised via income tax, although obviously the wealthy are left paying less than would be the case if there were higher income tax bands.

    It is quite ridiculous, as Tim seems to be arguing, to say that prioritising the total amount of revenue raised from income tax above any considerations as to what proportion of their income high earners should pay, as supporters of flat taxes do, is somehow morally suspect. As I say, it simply reflects a different view as to what the purpose of taxation is.

  48. It also depends on the vigilance towards those who try and avoid taxation and how serious we are in terms of stopping this

  49. One possible trade-off is to combine the flat tax with the abolition of many of the tax shelters available to the very wealthy and also perhaps a minimum % tax payable (on gross income) for very high earners. You might find the effective tax rate paid by the very highest earners rose in this scenario.

  50. I’ve always supported a flat tax in principle, but I have reservations as to how it would work in practice and what effect it would have on overall government tax revenues.

    It would have to be introduced in stages though to monitor it’s effects.

    A good start would be if Osborne increased the threshold for the 40% tax rate to somewhere in the £45-£50k range in next weeks budget.

    I’ve always argued that that will be a certain vote winner for the Tories as they can re-establish themselves as the party of the aspirational classes.

    And that would have to go alongside honouring the Lib Dem’s core policy on the personal allowence, continuing to cut corporation tax, resisting a mansion tax and scraping the 45% income tax rate.

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