Mid Norfolk

2015 Result:
Conservative: 27206 (52.1%)
Labour: 9585 (18.4%)
Lib Dem: 3300 (6.3%)
Green: 2191 (4.2%)
UKIP: 9930 (19%)
MAJORITY: 17276 (33.1%)

Category: Very safe Conservative seat

Geography: Eastern, Norfolk. Part of Breckland and South Norfolk council areas.

Main population centres: Dereham, Watton, Attleborough, Wynmondham.

Profile: This is a large rural seat to the west of Norwich, a mixture of rural villages and ancient market towns, the most significant being Wynmondham and Dereham.

Politics: A seat called Mid Norfolk has existed since 1983, but the present seat was actually newly created for the 2010 election, taking in parts of the old Mid Norfolk, Norfolk South and Norfolk South West (the bulk of the previous Mid Norfolk formed the basis for the new Broadland seat). The seat was expected to be a safe Conservative seat and was easily won by the party in 2010.

Current MP
GEORGE FREEMAN (Conservative) Born 1967, Cambridge. Educated at Cambridge University. Former Parliamentary officer for the NFU, and subsequently in venture capital. Contested Stevenage 2005. First elected as MP for Mid Norfolk in 2010. Under secretary for business since 2014.
Past Results
Con: 25123 (49%)
Lab: 8857 (17%)
LDem: 11267 (22%)
UKIP: 2800 (6%)
Oth: 2718 (5%)
MAJ: 13856 (27%)

2015 Candidates
GEORGE FREEMAN (Conservative) See above.
PAUL SPEED (Liberal Democrat)
Comments - 16 Responses on “Norfolk Mid”
  1. George Freeman is one of the more sensible Conservative MPs because he believes in mutual ownership.


  2. ‘George Freeman is one of the more sensible Conservative MPs because he believes in mutual ownership’

    I have to say he is one of the 2010 intake I didn’t even know existed

  3. I would be very wary of tampering with the current structure of the railways. Since the turn of the century the current set up has been delivering a gradually improving service by virtually every measure, as this document shows:


    The biggest existing problem is that of high fares, particularly at peak times. That is a problem to which there is no easy answer.

  4. The easy answer is lower fares!

  5. Since the 1980s the railways, at least outside London & the SE, have switched from long infrequent trains to short frequent ones.

    Kieran and I both grew up in the same general area. The route from Nottingham to Manchester passes through Chesterfield. Before 1988 there were a couple of through trains per day on this route, all at least 8 coaches long, and one of them was called “The European” (running from Harwich to Glasgow) which was often 12 or 13 coaches long. I vividly remember travelling on The European a few times as a child.

    After 1988 the service changed from a few per day to hourly, but train length changed from 8-13 coaches to 2 or maximum 4. The frequency is now half hourly but still maximum 4 coach train length. Politicians talk about “capacity”, but they don’t talk about how inefficient trains now are. If they reduced the frequency but increased the length, as in the 1980s, a lot of capacity could be freed up (this also pertains to the HS2 debate). Maybe our “I want it now” society means we are only willing to travel by train with high service frequencies these days.

  6. Local election (2013 that is) analysis for this seat:

    This was in some ways the most stable part of the county, with the 19% drop in the Conservative share of the vote still leaving them with only two lost seats to UKIP who garnered 27% from a base of nothing. It’s an oddly diverse area; whilst it has some very affluent areas indeed (Wymondham and Hingham), it also shades into equally solid rural Conservative territory, with UKIP’s gains in Watton and Dereham South being the sort of rural centres they tend to do well in.

    The Liberals seem to have had practically no organisation in this seat at any point, standing only four candidates in 2009 and four in 2013 over the nine council seats I looked at; their vote share nonetheless plummeted from about ten percent before the last election to two and a half percent last year. Labour’s vote numbers dropped a little but their share went up, putting them in second in 2009 and third in 2013 (behind UKIP); the Green vote share halved, but was in both 2009 and 2013 higher than that of the Lib Dems (making this probably the weakest part of Norfolk for the LDs even pre-coalition).

    UKIP’s “surge” had a bit of traction where you’d expect it to here, but the up-market parts of the seat weighed against them heavily (Hingham was one of the only areas where they didn’t have a candidate). This is possibly the “perfect” safe seat for the Conservatives, spanning various of their key voting constituencies but without one being dominant enough that if they lose it their hold on the seat is threatened.

  7. Harry Clarke, former NHS director, selected as Labour PPC.

  8. Labour should come second here. I don’t know much about the seat.
    It does look like the LD vote in Norfolk did generally hold a bit better in 2013 though. (Perhaps surprisingly for the Eastern area).

  9. Rail –
    I think many people would prefer more frequent services than having to plan everything very carefully and hang around in some provincial shopping centre having endless cups of tea.

    But HH has a point.

    In some areas we need both. In SW London I look forward to the longer trains coming.

  10. Lib Dem candidate for this seat is Paul Speed who lives in the constituency

  11. Conservative Hold. 10,000 maj.

  12. Clifton Jordan, the leader of Norfolk County Council, has died.

  13. So yesterday, George Freeman of this seat, and Trudy Harrison of Copeland, both announced in parliament that they had changed their minds and would now support Theresa May’s deal. That’s one from each side of the referendum debate.

    Obviously the government will still lose (assuming the vote actually goes ahead this time), but perhaps the margin of defeat won’t be quite as big as some have imagined. It might end up in the bizarre situation where they’re able to spin a defeat by around 100 votes as some kind of moral victory.

  14. Tom Newton Dunn is reporting May will lose by more than expected last month

  15. What’s “more than expected”? What’s “expected”?

  16. Plus I wouldn’t read anything into my predictions. I thought the government might lose the Heathrow vote and they ended up winning it with a 300 majority.

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