2015 Result:
Conservative: 23159 (51.7%)
Labour: 7149 (15.9%)
Lib Dem: 2929 (6.5%)
Green: 2352 (5.2%)
UKIP: 9239 (20.6%)
MAJORITY: 13920 (31.1%)

Category: Very safe Conservative seat

Geography: South East, Hampshire.

Main population centres:

Profile: The seat contains the huge post-war Leigh park housing estate.


Current MP
ALAN MAK (Conservative) Born York. Educated at Cambridge University. Former solicitor and entrepreneur. First elected as MP for Havant in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 22433 (51%)
Lab: 7777 (18%)
LDem: 10273 (23%)
UKIP: 2611 (6%)
Oth: 809 (2%)
MAJ: 12160 (28%)
Con: 18370 (44%)
Lab: 11862 (29%)
LDem: 8358 (20%)
GRN: 1006 (2%)
Oth: 1755 (4%)
MAJ: 6508 (16%)
Con: 17769 (44%)
Lab: 13562 (34%)
LDem: 7508 (19%)
GRN: 793 (2%)
Oth: 805 (2%)
MAJ: 4207 (10%)
Con: 19204 (40%)
Lab: 15475 (32%)
LDem: 10806 (22%)
Oth: 442 (1%)
MAJ: 3729 (8%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
ALAN MAK (Conservative) Born York. Educated at Cambridge University. Solicitor and entrepreneur.
GRAHAM GILES (Labour) Qualified probation officer and baptist minister. Founder of a charity helping disabled Romanian children. Contested Gosport 2010. Awarded the MBE in 2003 for services to disadvantaged Romanian children.
STEVE SOLLITT (Liberal Democrat) Management accountant. Eastleigh councillor 1994-2002, 2003-2006 and since 2010. Southampton councillor 2007-2011. Contested Portsmouth North 1997, Basingstoke 2001, Southampton Test 2005.
JOHN PERRY (UKIP) Educated at Southampton University. Accountant. Havant councillor.
TIM DAWES (Green) Retired businessman. Contested Portsmouth South 2010.
Comments - 48 Responses on “Havant”
  1. Was Havant in Fareham until 1950 and then Portsmouth Langstone until 1974?

  2. Havant is a seat which has managed to have a decent Labour vote without ever really challenging the Conservatives. It is the kind of seat that the Lib Dems might have hopes in if they were able to retain second place and squeeze the still considerable Labour vote centred mainly, I would guess, on Leigh Park.
    That, however, ignores the remarkable results for UKIP this year and the fact that Labour came a distant fourth in the County Division covering this area. This in a seat Labour previously held.
    The Conservatives will undoubtedly hold this seat, the question is will Labour be able to reclaim second place from the Lib Dems, or will UKIP surge in front of both of them?

  3. Cameron should have made much more use of Willetts.

  4. Good observations.. One can see parallels between this seat and the not too distant Eastleigh …

    It has been used for decades by Tory MPs as a soapbox for greater things, but not much has come back to the locals in terms of benefits from being in such a “safe” Tory seat.

    Council had a LibDem minority administration a bit over ten years ago when a wayward councillor threw all into disrepute…

    Hayling Island is not decrepit like many other south coast resorts as it was never very fashionable in the glory days of such resorts anyway.. No mouldering Victorian hotels etc.. It would best be described as a 1950s/60s suburb by the sea.

    However, the population has been increasing (threefold) since the 1950s and yet the transport connections to the mainland are actually less than they were in the pre-Beeching days.

    Overwhelmingly Tory dominated council have become a mass of back-stabbing in the absence of anyone else to belittle. For a want of better things to busy themselves with they even wanted to change the town’s name claiming that “haven’t” had negative connotations.

  5. Weirdly, when David Willets resigned after dissembling, it was because it was believed that he had tried to stretch verbal congruity by claiming he was using, what was described as, a no longer recognised use of “want” meaning “need” (as “in want of”).
    What was funny was that we still use the word “want” to mean “need” up here. When we say somebody “wants a wash”, we mean he is in dire need of one.
    He’d have got away with it if he had been Northern.

  6. Amusing…

    Did the committee spend 20 hours trying to divine the definition of “want”?

    Sometimes having Two Brains is not better than merely having one..!

  7. That was what was said at the time…..comments like two brains being no substitute for common sense.

    However it is a long time ago now and the Tory benches are deeply lacking brains which aren’t entirely focused on climbing the greasy pole. Willetts has done some especially commendable study on baby boomers and the inter-generational conflicts shortly to become major issues. He should be in the cabinet.

  8. ‘Cameron should have made much more use of Willetts.’

    Totally agree

    When elected in 1992, he was tipped for cabinet within two years

    Whilst his odd decision to support David Davis in 2005 wouldn’t have done him much favours, he’s clearly head and shoulders above most of his Parliamentary colleagues (on all sides of the house) and his presence in cabinet could only help the Tory cause

  9. yes I agree with that too. While he is certainly not a handsome man, he has always had the knack of expounding his policies calmly & come over as simultaneously clever & yet not at all pompous. Others with considerably lesser capabilities were promoted above him wrongly.

  10. ‘While he is certainly not a handsome man, he has always had the knack of expounding his policies calmly & come over as simultaneously clever & yet not at all pompous.’

    Absolutely – which makes him almost unique in today’s tory party!

    That the likes of Chris Grayling – who made yet another gaffe yesterday in declaring the Tories as the party of the rich – got the nod over him, in an attempt to curry favour from the Right, shows you that Willets doesn’t have muich company wjhen it comes to his intellect – not in either the tory party nor parliament as a whole

  11. David Willets to stand down in 2015.

  12. Could be some UKIP potential here.

  13. Agreed. I’d forgotten how close it was in ’97

  14. A major loss for the Conservatives and to the government.

  15. Surprised he’s standing down given that he’s still a fairly notable minister.

  16. Conservatives are currently selecting Willetts’ replacement.

    Applications are being sifted and I suspect that I know who the winner will eventually be.

  17. The 12 longlisted in the Conservative selection

    Antonia Cox
    Suella Fernandez
    Sian Flynn
    Mark Fox
    Chris Hayward
    Sarah Heald
    Sarah Macken
    Alan Mak
    Michael McManus
    Luke Parker
    Laura Trott
    Charlotte Vere

  18. Both Suella Fernandez and Charlotte Vere made the shortlist for Croydon South earlier in the year.

  19. Cox was on Hertsmere shortlist and on South East Cambridgeshire longlist.

    Hayward was on Northampton South and Hertsmere

    Fernandez was also up vs Boris in Uxbridge

    Macken was shortlisted in Louth

    Parker was on the Croydon South longlist. Same for Trott

    Vere was also on South Cambridgeshire shortlist

    Sarah Heald is the daughter of North East Hertfordshire MP

  20. Can’t see anyone local at immediate glance. No clear favourite therefore.

  21. The 4 left in the Conservative final shortlist are

    Chris Hayward
    Alan Mak
    Michael McManus
    Charlotte Vere

  22. Alan Mak got the Conservative nomination

    His website: ww.alanmak.org.uk/

  23. You’d think the parties would just automatically select someone local but whatever.

  24. Not selecting a local candidate here will cause Cheltenhamesque problems with UKIP the beneficiary. Interesting to read the bile on Conservativehome surrounding this selection.

  25. I am the local UKIP candidate having lived and worked in the constituency for over 35 years, unlike the other major party candidates who live up to 300 miles away.

    As a councillor, I couldn’t represent my electors properly if I lived 300 miles away as I find I have to be physically here.

    To make it clear, if elected, I would not expect the taxpayer to fund a second home or constituency home, and please read the Honesty & Integrity statement on website.

  26. Website didn’t appear, it is here: http://www.johnperry.org.uk

  27. I think if Alan Mak gets elected (which he should despite the efforts of the UKIP candidate above) then he will be the first MP of Chinese extraction.
    He won’t be the first to sit in Parliament though as there are a couple of peers.

  28. This has always struck me as the type of seat that moght be quite competitive were in anywhere else than the south coast

    I’ve only been to Havant a couple of times but it seemed very working class and I could see some comparisons with Eastleigh – although the by-election there in 94 knocks it off kilter politically

    As with other delapidated South Coast seats like Folkestone, Shoreham and Worthing I’d imagine, UKIP will do well here in 2015 and should be a good shout for 2nd

  29. Havant has a number of different personalities…. there is the commuter element up to London with the fast train service… there is the retiree element on Hayling Island, which is not rundown in the least compared to say Bognor.. I used to live there in the 1980s…there is though a very small zone of tattiness on the Island, near the amusement park.

    then you have the very grim Leigh Park, which was an expulsion of WWC voters from Portsmouth.. curiously the ONLY councillor the LibDems have in Havant nowadays covers that ward.. Emsworth is very traditionally Tory and more inland village-like despite being on the arm of the sea. It was an old oyster-fishing locale..

    The Waterlooville “suburb” is actually in Meon Valley has a grim shopping area but the housing parts are quite nice

    So really the “bad” part of Havant is Leigh Park…

  30. Thanlks for the info Antiochian – as I say I only skirted past it on a couple of occasions and I’ve never been to Hayling Island as far as I’m aware

  31. Though it isn’t very pretty, I think Eastleigh is more prosperous and accessible than much of Havant. It is benefitting substantially from the prosperity of the wider Southampton area, which is easily seen with business parks etc sprouting up all over the place.

    As Antiochian says, Havant has bits which are quite remote and cut off, full of retirees, in addition to a more prosperous commuting area. In that it perhaps resembles somewhere like Castle Point more than Eastleigh, though without the inflow of former East Enders its politics are perhaps a bit softer (though UKIP could still do quite well).

  32. Agree totally with Hemmelig…. Hayling is separated by a couple of hundred feet of water from Southsea but has never made it as commuterland for Pompey because the drive off the island and then into Portsmouth is nightmarish,… there’s a dinky ferry…

    a bridge would make it a very desirable suburb of Portsmouth.. but doubt the natives would like the threat of influx..

    Emsworth looks more to Chichester than Portsmouth

  33. Antiochian

    Someone on here said you had defected to the continuing Liberals.

    Three continuing Liberals stood in the same ward as me 13 years ago. Though nice people, they seemed utterly different from the Lib Dems and indeed both parties seemed to hate each other. They were quite friendly with local Tories.

    They come across to me as deeply Eurosceptic and libertarian, perhaps more similar to the Carswell wing of UKIP than to the Lib Dems.

  34. They are Eurosceptic… I re-ratted (love that word..) I am now in the Andover LibDems (indeed Chairman thereof)

  35. Quite interesting that the self-declared successor parties to the Alliance parties (CSDP and CLib) are both anti-Europe, given their history.

  36. Steve Sollitt has been chosen as the LibDem PPC for Havant at a members meeting.

  37. Steve Sollitt, now there’s a familiar name. The man has stood previously in no fewer than three other Hampshire seats- Portsmouth South in 1997 when Syd Rapson was first elected, Basingstoke in 2001 against Andrew Hunter and he last stood in Southampton Test against John Denham in 2005, almost taking second place off the Tories. There seems to be a lot of swapping around with these Lib Dem candidates in Hampshire, many of them seem to go from one seat to another at successive elections.

  38. Useless fact- The three most recent Lib Dem candidates for this seat (Alex Bentley in 2005, Alex Payton in 2010 and now Steve Sollitt in 2015) have all stood/will stand in other Hampshire seats.

  39. How do I get my photo and bio updated here. As the only local candidate from the major parties in the General Election, I’m keen to have my details here.

  40. a Grant Shapps wannabe….? Gilding the lily ever so slightly


  41. Conservative Hold. 10,000 maj

  42. Make does a u-turn un the EU Referendum. Backed out before his selection and now backing in after his election.


  43. That ‘story’ is Guido being Guido. To me it is more likely that he souped up his scepticism to get selected ( though those words were essentially Tory policy at the time) than that he ‘sold out’ for careerist reasons now. It is far from clear that backing Remain will be a good career move anyway – even if Remain win the referendum the PM can’t be seen to be excluding leavers in favour of people who supported him.

  44. I have just watched a clip of Mak being interviewed. The interviewer understandably laughed at the man’s idiocy.

  45. Yeah I saw it too, going on about strong and stable government at this stage in the game is pretty farcical.

  46. In fifty years’ time these words will be written on a tombstone in Westminster Abbey:

    Here lies Theresa May, a strong and stable leader who governed in the national interest.

    Buried with her, her husband Philip, who took the bins out.

  47. Alan Mak is a dreadful little bum licker.

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