Hayes & Harlington

2015 Result:
Conservative: 11143 (24.7%)
Labour: 26843 (59.6%)
Lib Dem: 888 (2%)
Green: 794 (1.8%)
UKIP: 5388 (12%)
MAJORITY: 15700 (34.8%)

Category: Very safe Labour seat

Geography: Greater London. Part of the Hillingdon council area.

Main population centres: Harlington, West Drayton, Hayes, Yeading.

Profile: A West London seat covering Heathrow airport, which is both the major source of employment and a major political issue, due to the threatened building of a third runway to the north of the existing airport in the area of Sipson and Harmondsworth (the site of the detention centre used for asylum seekers detained pending deportation from Heathrow). This is historically an industrial residential area, housing for those working on the railways and Grand Union canal and in the light industries that grew up in the 1920s and 30s, aviation and broadcasting. A majority of the population is from ethnic minorities and there are large Muslim and Sikh populations here.

Politics: This is normally a Labour seat - it was won by the Conservatives in 1983 after the defection of the previous Labour MP, Neville Sanderson, to the SDP and held by the Tory right-winger Terry Dicks (famously described by Tony Banks as a "pigs bladder on a stick") until 1997. Since 1997 it has returned to form as a safe Labour seat, represented by serial Labour rebel and left-wing ringleader John McDonnell.


Current MP
JOHN MCDONNELL (Labour) Born 1951, Liverpool. Educated at Great Yarmouth Grammar and Brunel University. Former trade union officer. Contested Hayes and Harlington 1992. GLC member for Hayes and Harlington 1981-1986. Deputy leader of the GLC from 1981-1985 until he felt out with Ken Livingstone due to his support for setting no rate in the face of government rate caps. First elected as MP for Hayes and Harlington in 1997. Shadow Chancellor since 2015. McDonnell was previously one of Labour`s most rebellious MPs, reliably opposing top-up fees, foundation hospitals, 90-day detention, the war in Iraq, the renewal of Trident. In 2007 he attempted to contest the Labour leadership but, despite persuading rival left wing candidate Michael Meacher to stand down in his favour, he was eventually unable to secure enough nominations to appear on the ballot paper. Upon the surprise election of Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader McDonnell was elevated to the position of Shadow Chancellor.
Past Results
2010
Con: 12553 (29%)
Lab: 23377 (55%)
LDem: 3726 (9%)
BNP: 1520 (4%)
Oth: 1461 (3%)
MAJ: 10824 (25%)
2005*
Con: 8162 (25%)
Lab: 19009 (59%)
LDem: 3174 (10%)
BNP: 830 (3%)
Oth: 1214 (4%)
MAJ: 10847 (33%)
2001
Con: 7813 (24%)
Lab: 21279 (66%)
LDem: 1958 (6%)
BNP: 705 (2%)
Oth: 648 (2%)
MAJ: 13466 (42%)
1997
Con: 11167 (27%)
Lab: 25458 (62%)
LDem: 3049 (7%)
Oth: 639 (2%)
MAJ: 14291 (35%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

Demographics
2015 Candidates
PEARL LEWIS (Conservative)
JOHN MCDONNELL (Labour) See above.
SATNAM KAUR KHALSA (Liberal Democrat) Contested Hayes and Harlington 2010.
CLIFF DIXON (UKIP) Contested Hayes and Harlington 2010 for English Democrats.
ALICK MUNRO (Green) Doctor.
Links
Comments - 533 Responses on “Hayes & Harlington”
  1. Kieran
    “However Corbyn talked about requisitioning property following the Grenfell Tower fire”
    I think we all know that was populist posturing, when pressed on the issue he or his spokespeople admitted it could take several forms such as compulsory purchase orders, now one can then pick huge holes in that but it was fairly apparent Corbyn and co were just grandstanding knowing full well people were angry and they didn’t need to actually act on their calls.

    “I am sure McDonnell has in the past floated the idea of the state taking back shares in the privatised utilities without paying the market rate”
    Again he has but that was back when he was a backbencher and didn’t have to think properly. Since becoming shadow Chancellor I think all but his biggest critics would admit he’s moderated himself quite a bit as he’s entered the real world and consequently purchase of the utility companies was one of the biggest expenditures in Labs manifesto.

  2. I could be wrong but many of the victims of the Grenfell tower fire been rehoused in the very properties the Daily Mail accused Corbyn of stealing.

  3. Rivers, I tend to think that what politicians say when they are unencumbered by constraints of office and the knowledge that their remarks will receive widespread coverage is a better indicator of their fundamental beliefs than remarks made when they are operating under those constraints.

    I think it’s perfectly fair to conclude that Corbyn and McDonnell are more attached to the idea of a powerful state doing good than they are to the idea that the state must respect private property rights.

  4. Kieran
    “I tend to think that what politicians say when they are unencumbered by constraints of office and the knowledge that their remarks will receive widespread coverage is a better indicator of their fundamental beliefs than remarks made when they are operating under those constraints”

    I agree but we should also agree that being a frontline politician has the effect of moderating you. I have no doubt Corbyn and McDonnell are further to the left than they are acting, just like I had no doubt Milliband was further to the left than he acted when he was leader and conversely I had no doubt Cameron was further to the right than he acted in government. Any serious frontline politician knows you have to pitch yourself carefully to avoid being labelled a frothing extremist.

  5. Also you have to encompass the range of views that make up a political party.

  6. “…but we should also agree that being a frontline politician has the effect of moderating you”.

    It has the effect of moderating the image you choose to project (and the manifesto you choose to put forward), but it doesn’t change your fundamental political beliefs. That’s why I simply don’t think its credible to charcterise Corbyn and McDonnell as simply cuddly, inoffensive Swedish type social democrats. They would implement something more radical than that given half the chance.

    Incidentally I think Cameron is a poor example of a politician who moderated the closer he got to power. He was always something of a pragmatist, and I think there is zero evidence that he ever wanted to tack further to the right than he did. If anything the reverse is the case. He almost certainly didn’t want an EU referendum, and would have preferred coalition MKII to winning a majority in 2015.

  7. Kieran
    “They would implement something more radical than that given half the chance”
    But that’s assuming their own party didn’t moderate them, they may very well drift further left as time went on and we’d probably see the occasional slippage but on the whole the cuddly social democrat persona would last, their certainly not going to win an election and declare us a sa peoples republic.

    “I think there is zero evidence that he ever wanted to tack further to the right than he did”
    There is quite a bit actually the most comical probably being his public “hug a husky” “greenest gov ever” “vote blue, go green” talk and in private him wanting to “cut the green crap”

  8. McDonnell this morning dropping Labour’s pledge to eliminate student debt and saying it was never a promise.

    Possibly this is part of Labour’s biggest problem – a large part of their better than expected result was the large increase in young voter turnout. Is this increase sustainable, particularly when they’re abandoning youth-friendly policies so soon after the election (making them stink of cynicism and opportunism)

  9. Paul D

    I was very interested at the General Election in the way Labour spending plans were largely left with little serious scrutiny. It was as if it did not matter because Labour could NOT win under Corbyn according to received wisdom. Certainly the Tories were criminally inept in their complete lack of criticism of Labour plans. When Labour were cruising to victory in 1997, they intensified the attack on the Tory party not cease most activity to let the Tories hang themselves.

    The young were sold an unrealistic series of policies, that would be difficult to finance given if a government puts taxes up beyond a certain level the disincentive to earn more kicks in and the raising of tax becomes counter productive to the aim. In terms of the sustainability of the young voters supporting Labour, it might be the case that due to Labour being defeated in 2017, the vacuum at the heart of Labour’s tax and spend policies under Corbyn is not exposed and so the young voters who supported Corbyn last time might do the same next time.

    Politics is cyclical like economics, the government has the power to change the direction of travel but that will not happen under the current PM’s leadership.

  10. “Certainly the Tories were criminally inept in their complete lack of criticism of Labour plans.”

    Oh they criticised them all right, but their criticisms fell on deaf ears. Because the criticism was rarely more nuanced than “magic money tree”, because their failure to provide costings for their own manifesto robbed them of their authority on fiscal prudence, and because given the choice between grim reality and false hope, many people understandably chose the latter.

    The Tories’ fault was not that they didn’t criticise Labour. Their fault was that that was all they did.

  11. Paul
    “McDonnell this morning dropping Labour’s pledge to eliminate student debt and saying it was never a promise”

    Lets not be silly here and start rehashing Tory HQ’s line, McDonnell said that they never promised to eradicate student debt and he’s right that wasn’t in the manifesto it was just something Corbyn mentioned once. Labs policy on tuition fees though is still very much alive.

  12. “that would be difficult to finance given if a government puts taxes up beyond a certain level the disincentive to earn more kicks in and the raising of tax becomes counter productive to the aim”

    Who knew that raising tax rates to their 2010 level would have that effect…

  13. I agree with Rivers and PT. Angela Rayner also mentioned this a couple days ago saying the party would not go into the next election with this pledge unless it was costed and could be paid for. Yes there was complacency on the Tories lack of focus on Labours costings. However, PT is 100% on this, you cant go into an election talking about sound finances while refusing to provide any costings. You lose your authority as PT says.

  14. It may have just been something mentioned once but it certainly resonated; I saw it repeated endlessly by Labour voters and supporters on social media. As such I suspect it influenced quite a few voters and they might not be feeling too happy about it now

  15. Paul
    With respect are you sure your not conflating abolishing fee’s and writing off all past debt? The former did resonate and it very much made the rounds on social media etc but the latter never came up once in my experience (social media and in real life amongst my friends) so much so I didn’t even realise Corbyn had raised the issue of past debt until after the election.

    Indeed this is probably demonstrated in that McDonnell’s admission (if you want to call it that) isn’t trending on social media, the only thing from his appearance that’s trending was his gimmick with the pay slip. A cursory search shows only a handful of evidently pro Tory accounts (including the Conservative press office) spinning it as Lab backtracking over its tuition fee pledge, that in of itself is telling, the fact that the Tories are trying to make it seem like Lab have ditched their plans to abolish tuition fee’s rather than the reality.

  16. There was also no point criticising Labour’s (costed) manifesto for spend when nobody knows how much Brexit is going to cost other than it’s going to cost a very, very large amount of money.

  17. Atm thats just anecdotal

  18. Labour are “wargaming a run on he pound”:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-41393021

    I suspect their plan will be to invest heavily in tinfoil 😉

  19. The consensus in the City is already that the pound is inexplicably over-valued, given the many risks which lie ahead of us. To some degree the Trump-related weakness of the dollar has come to the pound’s rescue.

    Even under the current government I’d judge a further 10-20% fall in the pound to be quite likely, almost certainly below parity with the Euro, the silver lining being that it will probably force the BoE to finally start putting up interest rates.

  20. I realise Sky are running with the great phrase from McDonnell that Momentum are “war gaming” and Paul Mason’s, “it’ll be like Stalingrad” but I was more amused by McDonnell’s choice of, “we’ll hit the deck running.”

    I assume he meant ground – although he is fond of the Farm’s music “Altogether Now (In No Mans Land)” that Labour used in it’s 1992 campaign.

  21. I mean I guess it’s great that they are thinking about the damaging upheaval that could follow their victory, but it does raise the qualm that maybe such a victory is not desirable.

  22. At least Labour are planning for a potential disaster, word is the current gov still won’t fund a proper analysis into the effects of hard Brexit, how ironic that the party of “hard truths” outright refuses to plan for the worst case scenario…

  23. There’s still a significant 20% or so of the electoate who really drank the Kool-Aid and who won’t hear a bad word said about Brexit. And the Tories have calculated (rightly) that it is these voters that enabled them to hang on by their fingernails in June. So the farce continues…

  24. “At least Labour are planning for a potential disaster, word is the current gov still won’t fund a proper analysis into the effects of hard Brexit, how ironic that the party of “hard truths” outright refuses to plan for the worst case scenario…”

    Hi Rivers

    I’m not going to forget your promise that Corbyn won’t re-introduce exchange rate controls…

    Pretty sure that must have been one scenario in the “war gaming”. In the extreme maybe even he Tories would be forced to use them temporarily after a cliff edge Brexit. The pound is very overvalued at the moment.

  25. “There’s still a significant 20% or so of the electoate who really drank the Kool-Aid and who won’t hear a bad word said about Brexit. And the Tories have calculated (rightly) that it is these voters that enabled them to hang on by their fingernails in June. So the farce continues…”

    True, and I have numerous family members in that 20%.

    The £20bn Brexit bill ain’t going down with these folks at all well, and as other commitments will have to be added to that figure, it’ll probably go up quite a lot.

    The Tories are getting themselves into a situation where the electorate will damn them if they do and damn them if they don’t – either a massive bill or falling off a cliff edge. Either way they almost certainly lose power.

  26. £20 billion wouldn’t be a “massive bill” by any stretch. That’s an amount equal to fewer than three years worth of annual net contributions at the current rate:

    https://fullfact.org/europe/our-eu-membership-fee-55-million/

  27. “£20 billion wouldn’t be a “massive bill” by any stretch. That’s an amount equal to fewer than three years worth of annual net contributions at the current rate:”

    1. People were promised by Boris Johnson et al that we would be leaving with no need to pay anything at all

    2. The final divorce bill will be more like 50-60bn Euro once other commitments are factored in

    If you think this won’t infuriate a population who are having to endure NHS and education cuts you are very deluded indeed

  28. “If you think this won’t infuriate a population who are having to endure NHS and education cuts you are very deluded indeed”

    It might infuriate people or it might not (and I’ll grant you that’s what’s important re future elections). Objectively though it isn’t a massive amount.

  29. ‘ If you think this won’t infuriate a population who are having to endure NHS and education cuts you are very deluded indeed ‘

    While staying in and paying more than that continually will also infuriate.

    The argument the government will use is that Blair / Brown / Cameron locked the UK into making payments and we’re now getting out of it before it costs us any more money.

    There’s plenty of big numbers which they could throw about – money lost by giving up the Rebate for example or and (exaggerated) estimate of whatever future contributions would be.

  30. Although of course the best plans are not to reveal your plans.

    Maybe McDonnell didn’t know he was being filmed in the dark nightspot.

    “Who are they?” was a great Q to Jezza from Laura K who the Corbynistas loathe. “When they come for us…” J Mc.

    Jezza at least answered honestly: “I suspect people John doesn’t like.” Well that’s certainly a long list.

  31. “While staying in and paying more than that continually will also infuriate.”

    But we will be staying out and almost certainly continuing to contribute, to gain access to the single market. On top of the divorce settlement.

    “The argument the government will use is that Blair / Brown / Cameron locked the UK into making payments and we’re now getting out of it before it costs us any more money.”

    The government can’t very easily use that argument given that most of them were part of Cameron’s government and supported Remain, not least the PM herself. And as per my comment above, despite not being a member it is most likely we will continue to make some level of annual payment after the divorce.

    My point isn’t to argue about Brexit so much as to suggest that it is very hard to see the Tories being re-elected next time.

  32. I agree with HH, I just don’t se the Tories navigating the Brexit mire without taking serious damage, their best strategy might be to avoid a total cliff edge by negotiating the softest Brexit possible, winning back the Battersea’s of this country and hopefully thus somewhat making up for the inevitable losses in the Mansfields. The added benefit of that strategy is that Labour couldn’t really role out the “betrayal of the British people line” given that the vast majority of its MP’s and members support the softest possible Brexit. Such a strategy if played right might actually semi neutralise Brexit as an issue.

  33. HH
    “I’m not going to forget your promise that Corbyn won’t re-introduce exchange rate controls”

    Given this context you can’t really hold me to that (the event their Is a run on the pound)
    Whenever a country is facing a run on its currency exchange controls are one of the policies nearly always implemented.

  34. ‘ But we will be staying out and almost certainly continuing to contribute, to gain access to the single market. On top of the divorce settlement. ‘

    Maybe and maybe not – whatever we’ll be paying less.

    ‘ My point isn’t to argue about Brexit so much as to suggest that it is very hard to see the Tories being re-elected next time. ‘

    It was very hard to see the Tories wining an overall majority in 2015, it was very hard to see Leave winning in 2016, it was very hard to see Corbyn Labour get 40% in 2017.

    The old patterns are broken.

  35. this site has become such a haven of “we’re all doomed” , “Brexit is the biggest disaster since the crucifixion” hogwash that many good posters have practically given up on it.

    Richard’s comments are excellent. We all thought, nearly all of us, that the tories wouldn’t win a majority in 2015, trump wouldn’t win, brexit wouldn’t happen, labour would get wiped out in 2017.

    All these expectations were false. Now all we hear is private Frazer style moanings about brexit. I would be amazed if we stayed in the EU, not least because Corbyn doesn’t want us to be in it.

    This site has become a Remainers lament with little actual comment about polling and political events. the site is so moribund that none of the data has been updated since 2015, an indication of AW ‘s general lack of enthusiasm for it.

    I wonder how long UKPR will last!?

  36. Now who’s being a doom and gloom merchant, Peter? Predicting a whole site will become obsolete simply because a few posters aren’t buying in to your airy fairy vision of Brexit (the ‘sunlit uplands’ as per Leadsom…sorry but I think I’m going to vomit).

  37. this site has been moribund for ages. a bunch of remainers moaning to themselves. we have data from the 2015 election. i wonder if and when it will be upgraded… a massive undertaking i m sure…lots of self-indulgent moaning about brexit. very few people i guess have ever been elected, or stood for election, for so much as a parish council.

    The site will last in a zombie half-life i’m sure.

  38. I’ve seen dozens of “why can’t you be more positive?” messages over the past fifteen months and not one has actually offered a concrete reason for positivity.

  39. I’m not a remoaner despite voting remain I would consider myself a soft eurosceptic who doesn’t particularly like the Tory vision for Brexit. The ills in life though don’t exist simply because of Brexit. Knock on a door for once and find out for yourself. People wait hours to get a bus to see their family in hospital. People can’t park in their own street and the state of highways is terrible. That’s not Brexit. That’s the reality of life outside the political bubble. It’s not great for everyone just because you’re doing okay.

  40. Peter Crawford said he worked in the City and hence must be surrounded by Remoaners from wall to wall every day in the office. Too outnumbered there to be able to argue back, perhaps letting it all hang out in here is very therapeutic for him 🙂 Same for Kieran W in academia. The very few Leavers I know personally who are well educated and in professional jobs tend to feel quite uncomfortable talking about it either socially or at work. Given that Brexit will dominate politics for a decade or more, it’s not possible to discuss politics at all without it looming in the background. Also even the government broadly admits it will cause difficulties for some years even if it turns out well in the end.

  41. Again – Not my post above – impersonator.
    Posted by
    Real Joe James B

  42. Random tidbit: according to YouGov, 47% of Labour voters don’t know who John McDonnell is.

    Say what you like about Ed Balls, but I’m sure his name recognition would have been a lot higher than that when he was Shadow Chancellor.

  43. ‘Say what you like about Ed Balls, but I’m sure his name recognition would have been a lot higher than that when he was Shadow Chancellor.’

    but that’s not necessaily a good thing – as Ed Balls found out when he lost his seat

    A more lower profile candidate probably would have hung on

  44. John McDonnel has just described Winston Churchill as a villain (when asked if hero or villain) because of Tonypandy. Be interesting to see if this becomes a story

  45. Ross Greer the green MSP was attacking Churchill the other week, called him a ‘mass murderer’ and ‘white supremacist’.

    He debated the issue with Piers Morgan.

  46. Already been condemned by Nicholas Soames and Ian Austin.

  47. It’s the sort of question that a senior politician – especially one fairly close to the ultimate prize – ought to be swerving. The Left seem unwilling and/or incapable of this.

  48. It beggars belief that anyone on the Left would condemn the man who did more than any other to defeat one of the right-wing and evil regimes in history

    Churchill was indeed a white supremacist – buyt then so were most British politcians of his era

    As somebody who studied Chirchill, Greer and McDonnell are as misguided about the UK;s best PM as Boris Johnson, who bizarrely seems to think that were Churchill still alive he’d have a natural ally, when nothing could be further from the truth

  49. “Churchill was indeed a white supremacist – but then so were most British politicians of his era”

    The term white supremacist is a ludicrous exaggeration even in the context you have placed it. The KKK and the South African apartheid government were genuinely white supremacists. Churchill was no more supremacist than most people of his generation (remember he lived much longer than most people born in the 1870s). Issues of race were barely an issue at all in the UK at the time given our tiny non-white population, but certainly Churchill would not have supported any kind of domestic apartheid.

    John McDonnell is at least old enough to have an informed view on these things based on his experience of them but Ross Greer wasn’t even born when Thatcher was in office – that didn’t stop him referring to her as evil and calling for parties when she died.

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