Manchester Central

2015 Result:
Conservative: 6133 (13.5%)
Labour: 27772 (61.3%)
Lib Dem: 1867 (4.1%)
Green: 3838 (8.5%)
UKIP: 5033 (11.1%)
TUSC: 270 (0.6%)
Others: 418 (0.9%)
MAJORITY: 21639 (47.7%)

Category: Ultra-safe Labour seat

Geography: North West, Greater Manchester. Part of the Manchester council area.

Main population centres: Moss Side, Hulme, Ancoats, Newton Heath.

Profile: The rapidly redeveloping and growing centre of Manchester. This contains the thriving City Centre itself, but also some of the blighted and troubled inner-city housing around it. These areas were once infamous for poverty and drug violence, but in recent years have seen substantial redevelopment and the beginnings of gentrification. Levels of owner-occupation remain low, with most of the residents living in private rented or social housing. The seat contains Manchester University and has a substantial student population, as well as Manchester`s Chinatown. The seat has the highest proportion of people with a Chinese ethnic background of any in the country.

Politics: A safe Labour seat with one of the largest electorates in the country. A large electorate does not, however, necessarily equate to lots of votes and the 2012 by-election had a turnout of only 18.2%, a record low.

By-Election: There was a by-election in this seat in LAB HOLD. For full details see here.

Current MP
LUCY POWELL (Labour) Born 1974, Manchester. Educated at Oxford University. Former Chief of Staff to Ed Miliband. Director of Britain in Europe from 2004-5. Contested Manchester Withington 2010. First elected as MP for Manchester Central in 2012 by-election. Shadow cabinet office minister 2014-2015. Shadow Education Secretary since 2015.
Past Results
Con: 4704 (12%)
Lab: 21059 (53%)
LDem: 10620 (27%)
BNP: 1636 (4%)
Oth: 1908 (5%)
MAJ: 10439 (26%)
Con: 2504 (9%)
Lab: 16993 (58%)
LDem: 7217 (25%)
GRN: 1292 (4%)
Oth: 1258 (4%)
MAJ: 9776 (33%)
Con: 2328 (9%)
Lab: 17812 (69%)
LDem: 4070 (16%)
GRN: 1018 (4%)
Oth: 700 (3%)
MAJ: 13742 (53%)
Con: 3964 (12%)
Lab: 23803 (71%)
LDem: 4121 (12%)
Oth: 907 (3%)
MAJ: 19682 (59%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005, name changed from Manchester, Central

2015 Candidates
XINGANG WANG (Conservative) Born China. Educated at Imperial College. Accountant.
LUCY POWELL (Labour) See above.
JOHN REID (Liberal Democrat)
MYLES POWER (UKIP) Born 1974, Singapore. Solicitor.
KIERAN TURNER-DAVE (Green) Educated at Manchester University.
JOHN PAUL DAVIES (Communist League)
LOZ KAYE (Pirate) Composer, musician and teacher. Contested Oldham East and Saddleworth 2011 by-election, Manchester Central 2012 by-election.
Comments - 249 Responses on “Manchester Central”
  1. ….or indeed how this equated to being a cock to you or anyone else. All I said was that Miliband was going to be a very bad prime minister. Hardly an un-mainstream view at the time. Jason’s right that life’s too short for all this stuff. I have enjoyed posting under this moniker for 9 years but I think from now on I’ll only post under my other username, which I haven’t used for ages.

  2. @Andy, it’s true the Labour share isn’t as big as their 70+% share in years gone by, but maybe because the electorate is increasing, so is their majority. In percentage terms it’s their biggest at a GE since 2001. As Christian observed, these urban Labour seats are now getting bigger majorities than they got in 1997.
    “The party is piling up majorities where it does not need them. All the candidates elected with more than 70 per cent of the vote were Labour. The only one to win more than forty thousand votes was Stephen Timms (East Ham), who also had the third largest majority. In the early 1950s Labour had huge and useless majorities in the mining seats; now these majorities are in the cities.”

  3. “Please tell me how I provoked your post & Runnymede’s posts on this thread of 6th July. I haven’t posted on this thread since before the election.”

    Can’t speak for Runnymede of course.
    Whilst he was musing at your prophesy of PM Miliband, I was just trying to respond to some interesting points you had raised in the post, which I hadn’t seen at the time.
    Further posts from me were a simple response to your contribution on July 7th, 2015 at 10:54 am.

    “how this equated to being a cock to you or anyone else”
    This specifically, not at all, but in general terms however:
    I might be missing something here, I’ll concede that; but I thought that, much in the style of say David Starkey, you thrived on being ‘the rudest poster on UKPR’. Come on! You’re catchphrase has to be ‘horseshit’ for a reason.
    I’ve never actually been on the receiving end of it. And, sneakily at times I’ve even sniggered when reading it, but when the subject matter you’ve been arguing was poppycock and piffle, why are you so irked by being called out on it?

    “I have enjoyed posting under this moniker for 9 years but I think from now on I’ll only post under my other username, which I haven’t used for ages.”

    I shall have fun trying to work that one out. Sincerely though, I do enjoy your contributions, so keep on at it. At the core of this thread there are one or two interesting psephological points to come out.

  4. The scene with the students did bother me quite a bit. I’ve become very conscious of how bright-eyed and oblivious my fellow students can be.

  5. Harry P – a bit of both.

    Labour have lost support here to UKIP the Greens and Tories. The longstanding Chinese community seems to have gone Tory (or at the very least turned out for the Tories since they targeted them in the City Centre ward and had Chinese events and a few Chinese candidates).

    What amuses me in all of these young gentrified wards is that even there the Tories (and often UKIP) outpolls the Greens. The Greens of course remain strong in their 1 bohemian ward in Lpool and 1 former ward in Manc. It’s just that they get almost eligible support (<2%) in the council estates of Merseyside and Greater Manchester.

  6. *negligible

  7. I think included in this seat is where the national declaration will be held. I imagine most of the regional counting centres will be in remain authorities.
    Because of the size of many rural authorities compared to the cities I wonder if remain does win it will less actual authorities than leave but because of larger electorates scrap a victory..

  8. Almost certainly that will happen

  9. BM11
    Very likely indeed I think, some of the rural authorities that will be heavily Leave are tiny (in terms of electorate) while the 10 largest authorities in the UK I think will all be comfortably Remain.

  10. Rivers: “The 10 largest authorities in the UK will all be comfortably Remain”.

    Not all of the biggest authorities are metropolitan boroughs. The unitary authority of Cornwall is in the top ten. They’ll probably break for leave.

  11. MP-R – absolutely. Rivers10 meant in purely % terms I imagine. Although clearly some cities still have large vote totals even if only 55% of them turnout.

  12. It was curious how on the referendum results programs they had an expectation of an enormous Remain win in Manchester.

    In reality Remain numerical majority in Manchester was smaller than Leave’s numerical majority in Wigan..

    The presenters really didn’t seem to understand how much of England’s population is outside the big cities.

  13. Richard – true, plus of course contrary to what they said Sheffield, Swansea, Birmingham, even the Liverpool City Region all voted Leave ie it wasn’t just Sunderland.

  14. Manchester has suffered the largest drop in home ownership in the UK.

    A 15% fall over the past decade.

    In part, due to 80% of the new apartments being rented – but I think a lot of the retired who have moved out of the city from the suburbs are renting out those houses. Hence the change in Chorlton etc.

  15. ‘A lot of that must be due to the expansion of universities also’

    Yep. Partly it is the ‘housing crisis’. But changing social norms/preferences are also a factor. More students naturally means more renters. And today’s people in their 20s are less likely to want to settle down and start a family, which home ownership is often associated with, than people in their 20s 30 years ago. A lot of ‘generation rent’ might not be happy with how much their rent is or the terms of it, but they’re also quite happy renting rather than buying. This is especially true of people with city lifestyles.

  16. Lancs
    The Liverpool city region voted Remain.

    Liverpool=85,101 41.8%
    Knowlsey=36,588 51.6%
    Sefton=71,176 48.1%
    Wirral=83,069 48.3%
    St Helens=54,357 58%
    Halton=37,327 57.4%

    Total Leave=367,588 48.8%

    Liverpool=118,453 58.2%
    Knowsley=34,354 48.4%
    Sefton=76,702 51.9%
    Wirral=88,931 51.7%
    St Helens=30,322 42%
    Halton=27,678 42.6%

    Total Remain=385,588 51.2%

  17. I can attest to exactly hat Jack says, I’m looking at getting my own place in the next year or so but I’m not even contemplating buying (for a whole host of issues)

    In of itself I actually don’t see an issue with falling levels of home ownership. Our home ownership levels are fairly typical for developed nations, also home ownership isn’t in of itself a good thing.

    The issue for me lies with the cost of housing and the subsequent increasing age at which people move out from their parents house of which Britain can boast one of the oldest average ages for moving out. This can be attributed to many things from high prices, lack of supply and a national obsession with detached 4 bedroom houses in suburbia that makes the US look like a bunch of Communists living in pre fab brutalist apartment blocs. All things that fall under the blanket canopy of “the housing crisis”

  18. The Pirate Party strikes again:

    If people look this strange, they often are.

  19. “a national obsession with detached 4 bedroom houses in suburbia that makes the US look like a bunch of Communists living in pre fab brutalist apartment blocs”

    Well I don’t know the last time you went to the US or where exactly you saw all these people living in brutalist apartment blocks. Downtown Manhatten and Chicago? A mere fraction of the national population. Far more Americans live in huge wasteful detached suburban houses than Brits. It may surprise the socialist mind but builders are keenest to build the kind of houses people most want to buy. But with the plot density laws these days it certainly isn’t easy to get the traditional 4 bed detached approved here any more. Our relatively new build house is a narrow 4 floor town house and due to smaller plots they are becoming very common now.

  20. Yes, I love the look of those huge American houses you see in suburbia in Home Alone, Uncle Buck etc.

  21. HH is right – hardly any 4 beds are being built here.

    A new private estate was just built here with 85 x 3 beds and just 6 4 bed plots available, all of which have tiny gardens.

  22. Also true where I live, which is very deep countryside. Fortunately I have a couple of acres screening me from the rabbit hutches

    Actually design-wise they are not so bad, but the plots are certainly small and the room sizes are very small too.

  23. My house is thatched. Not cheap to maintain, mind. Very warm though.

  24. The National Crime Agency says that a 41-year-old man was arrested re child pornography early today.

    It’s understood to be Tory Cllr Matthew Sephton.

    He’s a Trafford Cllr, the former chairman of LGBTory and was the PPC in a By-election here.

    He’s been suspended from his job as a primary school teacher in Stockport.

    I recall he’s the diminutive, camp character who I spotted at a few Counts around the North West over the past decade or so. I did remark on here how I thought it was odd that when I looked him up I saw that he’d stood in the Locals in Lancaster, Liverpool, Wigan, Manchester and Trafford and wondered why he kept moving so often. But other than that he was highly regarded by the Party and can be found online in numerous photos with David Cameron as PM and is currently chairman of Greater Manchester Area Conservatives..

  25. Why on earth are these dodgy characters embraced by political parties time after time. Regretfully I am fast arriving at the BNP view that politics these days is increasingly dominated by “liars, buggers and thieves”, especially in the lower echelons. If found guilty he should have the book thrown right at him. A primary school teacher as well – how disgusting.

  26. True.

    What’s more worrying (as Ben Harris-Quinney on Breitbart point out today) is that he was one of the Cameroons who tried to play down both the expenses’ scandal and the historic child sex abuse investigations as witch hunts (by the Telegraph!) against Parliament and against gay politicians respectively.

  27. It’s very hard to believe that Cameron didn’t know what this bloke was into. The whips and party hierarchy always keep the PM well informed. Perhaps he was useful as an attack dog against social conservatives, as Breitbart says. Worth saying also that Harris-Quinney was mercilessly pilloried by said social liberals a year or so ago.

  28. careful HH

  29. My Breitbart & Altrincham Today links are awaiting moderation; but my post also included this (in reply to HH):

    Having seen the photos, I can confirm that this is definitely the guy I spotted at a Count and from memory he was a bit drunk too. I’m surprised he’s 41, as I’m sure he was listed as some sort of NW Conservative Future organiser recently and that org is for 14 – 30-year-olds. Maybe they need to investigate why he was attending events made for teenagers and students as well?

    An interesting snippet from the new Breitbart piece today, is that it says a David Jones helped him become a PPC. He’s the gay Tory who was listed as behind that Anglo Catholic drinking club at Runcie’s old parish church in Crosby and who got rid of the Vicar who objected to the ‘drinking culture.’ Sadly the Diocese caved in when Jones et al threatened to stop donations.

    The only amusing piece I found online re the Cllr was a photo of him dressed like the pagan ex-MP Ron Davies. Sephton was listed as some Order of Knight Templar. What’s that – a sort of Catholic Freemasonry?

  30. I assumed the Mark Clarke stuff had put a stop to overage people getting involved in Conservative Future. Certainly it should’ve done.

  31. The woman caught shopping in Tesco here in her pyjamas has said it’s “racist” to tell her not to because she’s a Traveller.

    You really couldn’t make it up.

  32. Deaths confirmed in Manchester arena after blast (apparently an Ariana Grande concert). Manchester Victoria train station closed.

  33. It’s awful.

    GMP statement:

    “Emergency services are dealing with reports of an explosion(s). There are a number of confirmed fatalities and others injured.

    Please AVOID Manchester city centre.”

    Roads are closed and Manc Vic train lines are blocked.

  34. North West Counter Terror Command have taken control of the situation as they suspect a terrorist attack.

    Armed police have now secured the area and widened the city centre cordon whilst dog units and army bomb disposal search the Arena and station (the Arena is above the train tracks for those not familiar with the area).

  35. At least 19 dead apparently. Presumably a lot of children :(.

  36. All election campaigning suspended

  37. Not a day for arguing about politics, but we might well find ourselves in a very different campaign when it resumes.

    This is now the second major election in a row with a horrendous terrorist attack in the middle of the campaign, I hope it doesn’t become the norm.

  38. ‘This is now the second major election in a row with a horrendous terrorist attack in the middle of the campaign’

    This time though it’s even more relevant as it’s in this country

    An appalling and despicable act

    I wonder whether Corbyn will come put with the sort of condemnation his colleague Livingston did whilst London mayor after the terrorist attacks of 07/07

  39. “This time though it’s even more relevant as it’s in this country”

    I was referring to Jo Cox.

    In the immediate aftermath of 7/7 Livingstone was seen to have responded very well, I think condemnation may well have been when he started to stray into race baiting towards the end of his mayoralty in a desperate attempt to beat Boris.

    I’m no fan of Corbyn but it’s unfair to tar him with this and I hope the campaign doesn’t drift into that.

    What it might do is revitalise UKIP somewhat, providing a more eager audience for their burkha banning manifesto.

  40. ‘In the immediate aftermath of 7/7 Livingstone was seen to have responded very well, I think condemnation may well have been when he started to stray into race baiting towards the end of his mayoralty in a desperate attempt to beat Boris.’

    That’s what I meat

    Livigstone’s succinct and articulate condemnation of the attack rightly earned him plaudits across the political divide – I wonder if Corbyn will do the same

    I think this might well revitalise UKIP but in the short term it keeps the social care debacle out of the news

  41. IS have claimed responsibility.

    We have been asked not to report some facts as counter terror raids are currently ongoing in Manchester.

    Some of the images from the foyer won’t be shown for obvious reasons either. I do know that the demographic who attended was largely teenage girls and young gay men.

    My colleague just spoke to a man – waiting outside the foyer for his wife and daughter – who was thrown upto 30 feet by the force of the blast to give you an idea of the IED packed with bolts and nails and shrapnel can be seen over a wide area.

    Eight GM hospitals are dealing with the injured and the response of the 60 ambulances was very speedy.

  42. “I do know that the demographic who attended was largely teenage girls and young gay men.”

    Perhaps not just a coincidence.

    A very dark day indeed when terrorists on British soil deliberately target children.

  43. Indeed.

    Incidentally the initial feedback from the Westminster Parties’ NW HQs is that there’s no appetite to resume campaigning this week, so I assume we won’t see any until perhaps after the Bank Holiday Monday ie just a 10 day campaign. CCHQ have confirmed that they have suspended all telephoning of voters until further notice and the local contacts planned for postal voters will not now go ahead this Saturday. Labour NW and Tim Farron have also cancelled all events that were planned for this week.

    I know that at least 2 Candidates had relatives who were there and one whose car is still stuck behind the city centre cordon.

  44. ”so I assume we won’t see any until perhaps after the Bank Holiday Monday ie just a 10 day campaign.”

    I’m being pedantic but wouldn’t it be 9 as isn’t there a media blackout on polling day?

  45. Nice to see a cool-headed and dignified discussion on here today.

    The armchair Alf Garnetts are out in force everywhere else…the comments on Guido Fawkes and even on politicalbetting hysterical to the point of unreadable.

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