Liberal Democrat Target Seats

These are the fifty seats with the lowest percentage majorities over the Liberal Democrat party. This does not necessarily mean they would be the most winnable seats for the Lib Dems in practice, or that they are the seats the Lib Dems party will actually be targetting at the next general election - on current polls, it is likely they will be putting more effort into defending seats than gaining them.

1. Camborne & Redruth Majority 66 (0%)
2. Oldham East & Saddleworth Majority 103 (0%)
3. Oxford West & Abingdon Majority 176 (0%)
4. Sheffield Central Majority 165 (0%)
5. Ashfield Majority 192 (0%)
6. Edinburgh South Majority 316 (1%)
7. Truro & Falmouth Majority 435 (1%)
8. Newton Abbot Majority 523 (1%)
9. Chesterfield Majority 549 (1%)
10. Swansea West Majority 504 (1%)
11. Hampstead & Kilburn Majority 42 (0%)*
12. Kingston-upon-Hull North Majority 641 (2%)
13. Rochdale Majority 889 (2%)
14. Harrogate & Knaresborough Majority 1039 (2%)
15. Watford Majority 1425 (3%)
16. Montgomeryshire Majority 1184 (4%)
17. Edinburgh North & Leith Majority 1724 (4%)
18. St Albans Majority 2305 (4%)
19. Newport East Majority 1650 (5%)
20. Derby North Majority 613 (1%)*
21. Weston-Super-Mare Majority 2691 (5%)
22. Hereford & South Herefordshire Majority 2481 (5%)
23. West Devon and Torridge Majority 2957 (5%)
24. Winchester Majority 3048 (5%)
25. Northampton North Majority 1936 (5%)
26. South East Cornwall Majority 3220 (6%)
27. Bristol North West Majority 3274 (7%)
28. City of Durham Majority 3067 (7%)
29. West Dorset Majority 3923 (7%)
30. Richmond Park Majority 4091 (7%)
31. York Outer Majority 3688 (7%)
32. Streatham Majority 3259 (7%)
33. Pontypridd Majority 2785 (8%)
34. Newcastle upon Tyne North Majority 3414 (8%)
35. Aberdeen South Majority 3506 (8%)
36. Islington South & Finsbury Majority 3569 (8%)
37. Warrington South Majority 1553 (3%)*
38. Birmingham, Hall Green Majority 3799 (8%)
39. Romsey & Southampton North Majority 4156 (8%)
40. Colne Valley Majority 4837 (9%)
41. Oxford East Majority 4581 (9%)
42. Bosworth Majority 5032 (9%)
43. Chelmsford Majority 5110 (9%)
44. Plymouth Sutton & Devonport Majority 1149 (3%)*
45. Bristol South Majority 4734 (10%)
46. Great Grimsby Majority 714 (2%)*
47. Totnes Majority 4927 (10%)
48. South East Cambridgeshire Majority 5946 (10%)
49. Ealing Central & Acton Majority 3716 (8%)*
50. Wrexham Majority 3658 (11%)

*Liberal Democrats currently in third place

Comments - 21 Responses on “Lib Dem Targets”
  1. The Derby North majority in the list above is over the Conservatives, not the Liberal Democrats.

  2. Lib Dems are also 3rd in Northampton North where they finished 2,485 votes behind the Tories, and also 3rd in Plymouth Sutton & Devonport where they were 4,221 votes short.

    In Warrington South and Ealing Central and Action they lagged 4,547 and 4,903 votes respectively behind the Tories.

    The target list shows how few realistic possibilities there are for Lib Dem gains in 2015. It’s quite possible that every Labour seat where Lib Dems were challenging will stay Labour, and the Lib Dems will fail to gain even a single seat from the Tories.

  3. There are some constituencies that are won and lost by all parties at elections irrespective of the swing…. a bit more nuanced analysis is needed….

  4. Frankly I would not be surprised if LibDem candidates took back some or all of Camborne, Oxford West, Truro, Newton Abbott, Winchester, Romsey. Montgomeryshire. Southeast Cornwall and Harrogate.

    Most of these were lost through complacency (e.g. Montgomeryshire) or in the backwash from the expenses scandal (Romsey) or other peccadilloes (Winchester).

    Labour-facing targets are a waste of time and while it might not be said publicly it is probably the case that we will see them de-emphasised on the target lists over the coming 18mths.

  5. “Labour-facing targets are a waste of time and while it might not be said publicly it is probably the case that we will see them de-emphasised on the target lists over the coming 18mths”.

    I think they’ll still be pretty active in Chesterfield, even though they realistically have no chance. They have not other remotely viable seats in the East Midlands, so unless they’re going to do something like bus activists from the likes of Derbyshire, Notts and Lincs to Manchester to try and defend Withington, they’ll just try and ensure they finish not too far behind in Chesterfield.

  6. Is Antiochian the new Gloy Plopwell?

  7. Flattery will get you nowhere!

  8. The LD task is Labour-LD seats is not to win them next time but not to fall too much behind to keep them as realistic targets when Labour will get back in power and will start to become less popular in this kind of seats. If they lose by 30%, they would need 3 elections (with Labour in power) again (like they did in the 1997-2010 period) before re-becoming a serious contenders. And by 3 GEs, Labour will be back in opposition.

  9. I’ve constructed a LD target list catering for swings of up to 10% which gives 127 seats. It also includes candidate selections:

  10. sorry to go slightly off topic but does anyone know the circumstances of how the lib dems (lembit opick) lost Montgomeryshire?

  11. Great work…. Interesting that only one former seat holder is confirmed to run again…

  12. In case anyone’s wondering where the 1,598 Lab margin over LD in Hampstead is coming from, the answer is it’s an extrapolation from the swing required to overtake the Conservatives in second place. If you just use a direct swing from Lab to LD, the LDs would overtake Lab but not Con. This has to be done whenever the LDs are in third place and the second placed party is closer to the winner than the LDs.

  13. I think the LD’s will win back Oxford West and Abingdon but not at all sure of any others

  14. I can easily see the Lib Dems deciding to give up on Sheffield Central, even though they were only 165 votes behind Labour in 2010, and concentrating all their effort in shoring up Clegg in neighbouring Hallam.

  15. I think that’s right – I can’t see Sheffield Central being seen as anything but safe Labour after 2015. The new MP seems pretty impressive as well, though not all that high profile.

  16. For what it’s worth, I think that the LibDems will win absolutely none of these, but Oxford West and Abington could just buck the trend.

    i’d also expect that some of these seats – Chesterfield, or the two Edinburgh constituencies for example – will see the LD vote fall away sharply.

  17. I think the LDs will probably pick up a seat somewhere in the south west, somewhere like Truro or Newton Abbott.

  18. ”I think the LDs will probably pick up a seat somewhere in the south west, somewhere like Truro or Newton Abbott.”

    Truro is a possibility for them but I can’t say whether they would actually gain it- It’s certainly one of their best chances along with Oxford West and the other seat that you mentioned- Newton Abbott, particularly helped by the fact that I think Richard Younger-Ross has been reselected as the candidate there.

  19. an interesting survey by Lord Ashcroft… I have mentioned this before but now the reports have more detail…

  20. My list is just as up to date as that one, I hope.

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