2015 Result:
Conservative: 17078 (39%)
Labour: 17506 (40%)
Lib Dem: 1629 (3.7%)
Green: 1142 (2.6%)
UKIP: 5621 (12.8%)
Respect: 465 (1.1%)
Christian: 312 (0.7%)
MAJORITY: 428 (1%)

Category: Ultra-marginal Labour seat

Geography: Yorkshire and the Humber, West Yorkshire.

Main population centres:



Current MP
HOLLY LYNCH (Labour) Born Halifax. Former communications officer. First elected as MP for Halifax in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 14806 (34%)
Lab: 16278 (37%)
LDem: 8335 (19%)
BNP: 2760 (6%)
Oth: 1376 (3%)
MAJ: 1472 (3%)
Con: 13162 (33%)
Lab: 16579 (42%)
LDem: 7100 (18%)
BNP: 2627 (7%)
Oth: 191 (0%)
MAJ: 3417 (9%)
Con: 13671 (34%)
Lab: 19800 (49%)
LDem: 5878 (15%)
UKIP: 1041 (3%)
MAJ: 6129 (15%)
Con: 16253 (32%)
Lab: 27465 (54%)
LDem: 6059 (12%)
Oth: 779 (2%)
MAJ: 11212 (22%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
PHILIP ALLOTT (Conservative) Born 1959. Educated at King James School and Leeds Metropolitan University. Managing Director of a marketing company. Former Harrogate councillor. Contested Brent North 2001, Bolton West 2005, Halifax 2010.
HOLLY LYNCH (Labour) Born Halifax. Communications officer.
MOHAMMED ILYAS (Liberal Democrat) Born Pakistan. Runs a driving school. Calderdale councillor 2008-2012.
ASAMA JAVED (Respect) Solicitor. Bradford councillor, originally elected for Labour.
Comments - 94 Responses on “Halifax”
  1. It’s being reported that Holly Walker-Lynch has won the selection. She’s local to Halifax and works for Linda McAvan MEP.

  2. Oops, Andrea beat me to it.

  3. George Galloway has announced that Respect will be interviewing candidates for Halifax this week in response to the rumours of vote-rigging in the Labour selection process.

  4. Asama Javed, a sitting Labour councillor in Bradford has defected to Respect and will stand against them here in Bradford.

    That opens up the possibility for a split of the vote on the left and an opportunity for the Tories to sneak in through the back door.

  5. Here in Halifax is what I was supposed to say!

  6. Was working in Halifax today, not much sign of election activity; 1 Labour poster spotted. Nobody I spoke to had been canvassed. Presume a comfortable Labour hold on the cards here.

  7. “not much sign of election activity”

    which indicates a lack of ambition by the Conservatives.

  8. Been to the hustings at Halifax Minster this evening. The most effective performer by far was the Conservative, Paul Allott. I speak as one who has never voted Conservative. Biggest cheer for the Respect candidate who spoke from the heart.

    Almost no posters in Halifax, little apparent enthusiasm for Labour but given the changing demographic I suspect they will win.

  9. Labour Hold. 5,000 majority.

  10. I can absolutely 100% guarantee you it will be much less than 5000 if it’s a Labour hold! A lot of Conservative resources have and are going into winning this seat, it will be very close.

  11. It seemed a bit of an odd seat for Respect to stand in, apart from the Muslim demographic. Do they have a history of standing here in the Locals?

  12. Respect decided to field a candidate as they were not happy with the issues surrounding irregular voting patterns at the last election in the seat. Seems to be more of a case of no confidence in the Halifax Labour organisation than any sort of hope of polling well.

    Interestingly they are also advising some of the local Muslim community to vote Tory if not Respect which agrees with the above sentiment.

  13. Labour hold Halifax by 428 votes:

    Reminds me of the 478 Labour majority in 1992.

  14. I did say it would be very close, Labour were saved by one ward polling extremely high figures in their favour (Park Ward).

    Certainly would not call it a comfortable hold, none of the candidates knew who had won

  15. In 1992 the Tories reduced the Labour majority from 1,212 to 478. This time they reduced it from 1,472 to 428.

  16. Must be infuriating for Calderdale Tories; they keep getting close but never quite win this seat.

  17. Wasn’t Park ward the one which featured in allegations of fraud a little while back?

  18. I wonder how Mixenden/Illingworth voted this May.

  19. Here’s this year’s local election result for that particular ward :
    Liberal Democrat 120
    Conservative 1537
    Labour 2082
    UKIP 1309
    Independent 69
    Green 137

  20. That result from Mixenden/Illingworth shows you just how strange it is that Halifax is still Labour. Even in this area where the vast majority of the White working class live Lsbour can hardly be said to have cruised to victory. To put it another way if you take those areas out of the equation the vast majority of the rest of the town except for the 1 area I will get to later had Tory written all over it.
    That ward is Park where the makeup of it must be at least 95% Pakistani Muslim. Although this time I haven’t heard any allegations of mass fraud anyone at the count knows that Labour got hammered on every other part of Halifax but in this ward the turn out was massive and almost unanimously Labour. Because of the particularly demographically segregated make up of the town it gives one of the clearest examples of the Muslin block vote you’ll see anywhere.
    I suppose technically there’s nothing wrong with this kind of thing but is this really democracy as we know it in this country?

  21. Christ, does Frederic not get the hint that this isn’t the site to discuss all this? Fair enough we all do it on these pages now and again, but not to his extent. Maybe you should post this in a more appropriate forum.

  22. At least Frederic posts stuff worth reading, in contrast with some other posters who used to visit this site a few months ago but haven’t been here recently, thank goodness.

  23. Perhaps you should take heed of the sentence

    “Fair enough we all do it on these pages now and again, but not to his extent.”

    Which I think is spot on.

    Everybody rants a bit on here but it’s a bit much to spam multiple threads with it at once, especially on pretty much the same topic.

  24. I see Alice Mahon is backing Leave.

    Although not surprising given that she supported the No2EU slate in the Euros just after she resigned from the Labour Party.

    Likewise Valerie Wise in Preston (daughter of Audrey).

    I wonder whether any of these will rejoin under Corbyn?

    Apparently Peter Shore’s widow and daughter joined UKIP.

  25. ‘Apparently Peter Shore’s widow and daughter joined UKIP.’

    And her daughter’s husband

    Supporting withdrawal from the EU is a view many on the hard Left have held for many years, but joining a party that supports things like banning the burkha, a flat tax and privatising the NHS, should be anathema to any left-winger let alone someone on the hard Left

    Maybe Peter Shore was going down the Woodrow Wyatt/Reg Sherwin road before his untimely death. Find that hard to believe

  26. Tim – as you know the NHS & burka anning aren’t UKIP policies but I take your point that many UKIP leading members might support them.

    I’ve never quite understood why some consider a flat tax some form of extreme position though. Whether it’s set at Gibraltar /Isle of Man rates of 20% or double that would surely be whether people supported it or not. [Although I realise a minority would always support eg a top 98% rate]

    I think Shore would always have remained loyal to Labour, had he lived to vote but it’s certainly true that most of that ilk seem to have left Labour for TUSC (Nellist) or the Greens or Respect (if they still exist).

  27. Lancs Observer
    With the greatest possible respect regardless of ones own views on a flat tax it really isn’t hard to see why its viewed as an extreme position, one only has to role out the old “Billionaire banker paying the same rate of tax as an office cleaner” line and 90% of people turn against the policy. Throw in the fact that aside for tax havens, overseas territories and dodgy crackpot dictatorships no country currently has a flat rate tax system. Not arguing the merits of the policy just pointing out why its viewed as extreme.

  28. @Tim those aren’t UKIP policies (at least not anymore).
    @LancsObserver I seriously doubt the majority of UKIP voters would support the flat tax or complete privatisation of the NHS (some of its right wing ex-Tory politicians might but their voters certainly not). Though banning the burqa would indeed be very popular with UKIP voters but I suspect such a position may be also fairly popular with the general public anyway.

  29. I assume it would be possible to produce a tool that worked out what rate a flat tax would need to be set at to keep tax revenues at current levels.

    I also assume the reason it hasn’t been done is because it would end up with some obscene cases which would end up splashed all over the papers, or with a doubling of relatively poor people’s taxes.

    Let’s be frank, if a Conservative government had wanted to do it since 1979 they’ve had the majorities to do so, so either they calculated that it wouldn’t raise anywhere near the amount needed, or it would be catastrophically unpopular.

  30. ‘With the greatest possible respect regardless of ones own views on a flat tax it really isn’t hard to see why its viewed as an extreme position, one only has to role out the old “Billionaire banker paying the same rate of tax as an office cleaner” line and 90% of people turn against the policy. ‘

    Whilst I totally agree with your objection to the flat tax – it’s one I share – I’m not sure I’d describe it as an extremist position. One of my closest friends – a high-earning Labour voter – thinks it’s a great idea and whilst I’m sure people like him are in a minority, the flat tax is, sadly in my opinion, an idea that has gained traction over the past few decades, and many at the forefront of the Brexit campaign are its keenest advocates

    I imagine there will be Tory MPs keen to put this in their next manifesto once Cameron goes, and with it his softer brand of Tory politics I think will soon be history – just as Labour has abandoned advocating the sort of policies that used to win them elections

    I hope Rivers and Nameless are right – but this country is considerably more right wing that at any time since the war, and I have a horrible feeling that with Labour in disarray, the Lib Dems almost dead and the Nationalists irrelevant to English voters, Johnson’s and Grayling’s brand of regressive, populist right wing politics might be more popular with voters than we currently envisage

  31. Pepperminttea – I didn’t state that a majority of UKIP members would support those policies.

    Rivers10 – that’s just your opinion and I’ve seen no evidence that’s shared by the majority.

    You could equally describe it as the more you work, the more of your own money you get to keep. Though I agree with MP-R, that raising the personal allowance aids that objective too.

    TimJ – I know I’ve discussed this before but Grayling isn’t populist (or popular). He’s Statist – hence his book banning and nationalising legal Costs – and he’s an ex-SDP member. Having interviewed him and chatted beforehand he strikes me as not believing in much at all and I think Andrew Neil said the same. I think there’s a few people like that in both Parties and it’s amazing how many of them have defected to whoever is leading in the polls at the time (although most are Cllrs rather than MPs).

  32. Chris Grayling might have once been a member of the SDP but he’s been on a rightwards trajectory ever since he left them – and with IDS know gone, he competes with Jon Whitingdale as the most right-wing member of the cabinet

    He doesn’t strike me as like Liz Trus for example – who defected to the Tories so she could become an MP – but as someone who has bought into the whole right wing agenda of leaving the EU, cutting taxes for the wealthy and abolishing employee protections at work under the mantra of cutting red tape

    A bettee example of someone who doesn’t believe in much at all is Boris Johnson as he’s shown himself as a shameless opportunist quite willing to do or say anything that will help become his party’s next leader – whether he actually agrees with them or not seems purely academic to him

    There’s bits of that in both Blair and Cameron but both do seem to have some kind of moral vision that underpins it all

    Some of Johnson’s recent comments about Obama and the European Union were the sort of things you’d expect to hear from someone like John Tyndall and think his overall behaviour during the whole campaign has completetly undermined his fairly competent tenure as mayor and makes him completely unfit for government office

  33. Tim Jones – that’s a fair point.

    I was thinking more of Grayling’s gay B&B outburst/gaffe just before 2010.

    I suppose you could say that means he’s right wing. Although it could just be paternalistic/Statist and he’s Roman Catholic. Though equally he then voted for gay marriage when he released that was the Leadership line.

    As I said it was only for half an hour, but I genuinely didn’t get the impression that he had strident views on much if anything. He spoke a lot about himself, his cricket prowess and media career though.

    You’re right he’s not as blatant as Mensch/Truss/Chisti et al.

    Grayling was actually very cautious in the interview and steered away from anything populist or indeed almost anything interesting we could use. At the time it was just about his ambitions (to go from Shadow Minister for Lpool to Merseyside to the Cabinet).

    He doesn’t like criticism though (as you may recall over the Telegraph splashing him on the front page over his second home expenses and him previously having being a Director of Charterhouse that was wound up by HMRC for non-payment of VAT).

    Re Obama I really didn’t get the faux outrage from Guardianistas re Boris’s comment. It’s undoubtedly true that his view of Britain is shaped from his relatives standpoint. Boris didn’t of course suggest Obama wasn’t born there as Trump did. Boris & Trump are populists but they actually share a lot of metropolitan elite facets too (unsurprising living in London & New York) and are pro gay rights and so on. Other Republicans and Tories are much more right wing/conservative on social issues.

  34. So guys. Thoughts here? Labour hold if they can tap into the crumbling UKIP vote? Or Tories sweep in on nat swing?

  35. Conservative gain.

  36. lol

  37. Quint

    Given how marginal it has been on so many occasions, it is a surprise that the Conservatives have only won it once – in 1983 – in the last 50 years.

    Unless the opinion polls change radically, this is a certain Conservative gain.

  38. Is Philip Allott going to be the Conservatives candidate again ?

  39. Is Mary Creagh and an alright lead not enough to hold on? Shes fairly well like apparently. Also, I could have sworn plop you left the site. Are you back again?

  40. Conservative win

  41. Conservatives select Chris Pearson as Halifax parliamentary candidate:


  42. Tory Manifesto to be launched here tomorrow. I must say a bit of a surprise as I expected it to be somewhere that hadnt been tory since before ww2 and with still a decent Labour Majority to show she means Business. This is one of the top ten most likely Tory gains next Month and was tory in 83, I suppose it sounds more Labour heartland than it perhaps is.

  43. Labour not only hold but INCREASE their majority.

  44. Labour win a majority on Calderdale Council for the first time since the 1999 election. Its been Labour controlled since 2015 but as NOC.

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