2015 Result:
Conservative: 18684 (39.7%)
Labour: 16759 (35.6%)
Lib Dem: 1774 (3.8%)
Green: 1218 (2.6%)
UKIP: 7485 (15.9%)
Liberal: 639 (1.4%)
Independent: 516 (1.1%)
MAJORITY: 1925 (4.1%)

Category: Marginal Conservative seat

Geography: Eastern, Cambridgeshire. Part of the Peterborough council area.

Main population centres: Peterborough, Eye, Thorney.

Profile: Peterborough was a victorian industrial town that has grown massively since the 1970s after being designated as a newtown in 1967. It is an economically successful city with strong service and distribution industries on the back of good transport links (there are intercity trains to London and it sits just off the A1(M)). It is an ethnically diverse city - there is a significant Asian Muslim population, but also many Italian immigrants (due to recruitment for the brickmaking industry in the 1950s) and more recent Eastern European immigration. The seat also contains an area of Fenland to the east including the villages of Thorney and Eye.

Politics: A key marginal between the Conservatives and Labour, Peterborough fell to Labour in 1997 and was regained by the Conservatives in 2005.

Current MP
STEWART JACKSON (Conservative) Born 1965, Woolwich. Educated at Chatham House Grammar and Royal Holloway. Former bank manager and business development manager. Ealing councillor 1990-1998. Contested Brent South 1997, Peterborough 2001. First elected as MP for Peterborough in 2005. PPS to Owen Paterson 2010-2011. Resigned as a PPS after rebelling over the issue of an EU referendum.
Past Results
Con: 18133 (40%)
Lab: 13272 (30%)
LDem: 8816 (20%)
UKIP: 3007 (7%)
Oth: 1699 (4%)
MAJ: 4861 (11%)
Con: 17364 (42%)
Lab: 14624 (35%)
LDem: 6876 (17%)
UKIP: 1242 (3%)
Oth: 1098 (3%)
MAJ: 2740 (7%)
Con: 15121 (38%)
Lab: 17975 (45%)
LDem: 5761 (14%)
UKIP: 955 (2%)
MAJ: 2854 (7%)
Con: 17042 (35%)
Lab: 24365 (50%)
LDem: 5170 (11%)
Oth: 926 (2%)
MAJ: 7323 (15%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
STEWART JACKSON (Conservative) See above.
LISA FORBES (Labour) Peterborough councillor.
DARREN FOWER (Liberal Democrat) Educated at Walton Comprehensive and De Montfort University. Media development officer. Peterborough councillor since 2004.
DARREN BISBY-BOYD (Green) Born Belfast.
JOHN FOX (Independent) Educated at Queens Boys Secondary Modern, Wisbech. Former police officer. Peterborough councillor since 2002.
CHRIS ASH (Liberal) Peterborough councillor 1986-1994 and since 2000.
Comments - 1,108 Responses on “Peterborough”
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  1. I reckon that if Cameron is not deposed by 2014, Stewart Jackson will defect to UKIP and stand for his seat. Labour has a strong candidate here, someone who is on the left of the party but is a working-class local mum and that can resonate with a lot of people but seat is a must-win seat. I also think that we could see Stewart Jackson resign over this expenses issue which would be interesting. If there was a Peterborough by-election, Labour will win.

  2. I don’t think Jackson will defect to UKIP. I think the likely outcome would be Cameron would be forced out to stop such defections.

    I agree with you about a by-election here. If it did happen (I don’t think there will be one unless things get extremely worse) than Labour should be able to win it unless UKIP put up a monumental fight.

  3. I have never been to Peterborough but I think Eastern European immigration is pretty significant in this seat and in the current climate of Farage-worshipping, if a by-election was called right now, I fear UKIP would win, which would be a shame as the Labour candidate is pretty good!

  4. UKIP won’t win because they are coming from such a low base but they will definately do well in a place like here and split the vote. Labour would take Peterborough in a by-election, I am confident of that. I would not rule out Jackson defecting to UKIP, he has hinted at it and is obviously a prime candidate. Labour needs to start talking for its plans for immigration in places like Peterborough, a new policy such as calling for reform to the EU Free Movement of Labour by having a certain level of GDP per head something Alan Johnson said on Question Time.

  5. ”I have never been to Peterborough but I think Eastern European immigration is pretty significant in this seat ”

    Yes, I’ve got friends who live in this seat and say immigration (not just Eastern European) is a big issue here.

    Labour won’t win this seat in the near future and won’t be surprised if they drop to 3rd place in 2015 here. UKIP will do very well here.

  6. According to today’s “Daily Telegraph” , Conservative Membership in Peterborough fell from 264 in 2010 to 140 in 2012.

    This raises an issue as to what effect low/high party membership has on Westminster election results. Has this been researched?

    It would be of interest to know what membership other political parties have in Peterborough in order to assess the likely result at the next General Election. In particular, given comments about UKIP prospexts here it would be itneresting to know how many UKIP members there are, and indeed how many of them are former Conservative party members.

  7. At the time of 2010 leadership election, Peterborough CLP had 213 members.

    Now Labour have around 11,000 more members at UK level.

  8. 264 in 2010? That seems very high to me.

  9. There is of course the question of what wards the membership was concentrated in, in both parties.

  10. Peterborough CLP currently has 225 members. At the PCC election last Nov I came top for Labour with 7,200 votes in Peterborough City which is the Peterborough Constituency plus some N W Cambs wards. The Lib vote collapsed and UKIP took many tory votes. Next years euro and council election will be interesting. There are significant numbers of non British votes in this area who don’t get to vote at General Elections.

  11. My forecast for 2015

    Con 36
    Lab 34
    Ukip 13
    Ld 12
    Others 5

    Of course there is a danger that UKIP starts to eat into 2010 Labour support nationally next year when Bulgarians and Romanians arrive.

  12. Less confident of a Labour win here than I was. Lisa Forbes is a bit of a joke, if I’m honest and UKIP does take votes off Labour. I suspect Labour could win if he starts spelling out what it will do on immigration, take Lib Dem votes but UKIP could end up backing Stewart Jackson.

  13. I am pretty sure that this will be a tory hold. I would put the swing at rather lower than the national average too, as it was a rather poor tory result in 2010.

    Con 39
    Lab 33
    LD 12
    UKIP 12
    Oth 4

  14. “Lisa Forbes is a bit of a joke” = “Lisa Forbes is on the Left of the party”, needless to say. Bob makes himself (why call yourself Bob anyway? we know your real name) look silly by automatically implying that left-wing candidates do worse than right-wing ones. As anyone with any electoral knowledge knows, some left-wing MPs have excellent electoral records (Corbyn, McDonnell, Mike Wood & Kelvin Hopkins are good examples) but so do some right-wing ones (Barry Gardiner, Jim Murphy, Russell Brown & many others). I think Forbes has made an excellent impression but I am not going to let my general approbation of her get in the way of forecasting the seat. I still have it as a Con hold at present but I would say by no more than 1,500. It’s still up for grabs right now & will remain so if Labour remains in a statistically significant lead as is the case at the moment.

  15. How did you work out Bob’s identity without his real first name? I wouldn’t have known where to start.

    Is it Dan Hodges lol?

  16. No, someone else worked it out & I have no reason to disbelieve them. It isn’t Dan Hodges. I presume that unlike that benighted person Bob is still a Labour Party member.

  17. Considering the current Conservative MP’s defiant attitude against Cameron & Co by resigning his PPS position on Europe and other matters, and taking on the Tory Council, I can’t see Labour doing well here at all – everyone likes an ‘independent’ party rebel (in 2005 so many rebel Labour MPs kept their seats), and the local papers seem to lap up his no nonsense and hardline approach all the time.

    Considering his rebellion on Europe again today (one of only 17 MPs that defied Cameron), him speaking out constantly against immigration and other matters, UKIP will go nowhere and Labour haven’t a chance in hell of winning back this seat. In fact searching Labour in Peterborough seems to come up with more articles about the Labour PPC’s relations to the unions than anything about her, her policies or her work for the constituency!

    Con hold definitely, even with a Lab majority in Government.

  18. I feel that the Conservatives are really trying hard with this seat compared to very little activity from anyone else – as a resident I’ve just had my fourth leaflet from the incumbent MP Stewart Jackson and nothing from the Labour or Lib Dem candidates.

    If all the other parties are going to be so apathetic on the doorstep, clearly the Tories are going to win here again with another large majority.

  19. The Tories will almost certainly hold I would have thought but I’m puzzled by the minescule swing Jackson achieved in 2010 when most seats like this – unattractive WWC/LMC new towns with an ethnic minority population – swung massively to the Tories

    He doesn’t seem to be a particularly nice man if truth be told but he’s not exactly the only MP you could say that about

  20. I hate posts like the one above. What you say, even if it is true, shows nothing more than the fact that the other parties have got you down as a Tory and so don’t waste their resources leafleting or canvassing you. It says absolutely nothing about how well they are working the other 70,000 or so electors.

    I have a very hard time believing that Labour aren’t working the seat. It is a must-win seat for them if they are aiming for an overall majority, and the strength of UKIP locally is likely to help them. Though I do agree a Tory hold is most likely, “another large majority” most certainly is not, and in any case I wouldn’t call the present majority all that large to start with.

  21. Plus it was also near (used to be sort of in) Northants where the Tories did very well in the seats they had gained in 2005,

  22. Was replying to Leslie.

    To answer Tim, I think Helen Jackson will have caused an above average swing in 2005 which meant the scope for further swing in 2010 was limited. Also the UKIP+ED vote not that far off 10% must have leeched from the potential Tory vote.

  23. Sorry I meant Helen Clark

  24. ‘Plus it was also near (used to be sort of in) Northants where the Tories did very well in the seats they had gained in 2005,’

    Peterborough was certainly in Northamptonshire prior to the 1970s and its results to correlate with those in 2005 – but the righ-wingers elected in 2005 in Northamptonshire (Bone, Binley, Hollobone) all got big swings in 2010, whereas Jackson did not – although I take Hemelig’s point that Helen Brinton’s canditure almost ceratainly auided the Tories in 2005

  25. The Tories also did very well here in 2001 and 1997, compared with the national swing. The 1997 boundary changes took out a lot of outlying Tory areas and on these boundaries Brian Mawhinney would only have had a small majority in 1992 – I’m guessing about 2000 or so, I’m sure Pete will know. It was pretty inevitable the Tories would have an election here where they underperformed sooner or later.

    The Romanian/Bulgarian immigration issue will presumably be a big factor here and it’s not obvious how it will play out. Early days but it’s Jan 8th and the sky hasn’t fallen in yet….I wonder if UKIP might not look like they have over-reacted, but we’ll have to wait and see.

  26. Tim Jones:
    I was elaborating on your point about the Peterborough result in 2010 being atypical by comparing it with the other Northamptonshire results.

  27. As UK Polling Report’s resident traditional Counties hawk, I will clarify Peterborough’s position.

    Peterborough remains part of the traditional County of Northamptonshire, though it has always somewhat semi-autonomous, hence the ‘soke’ or liberty of Peterborough.

    In 1965, Peterborough was tied with Huntingdonshire in a purely administrative arrangement- ‘the county of Huntingdon and Peterborough’.

    In 1974, Peterborough was included in the non-metropolitan county of Cambridgeshire. Again this is a purely administrative arrangement. The 1972 Act did not alter the boundaries of the traditional Counties and the new counties are simply for administrative purposes.

  28. Of course, I should add that parts of the modern day Peterborough constituency are part of the traditional County of Cambridgeshire as well as the administrative one. Thorney is a good example.

  29. “The 1997 boundary changes took out a lot of outlying Tory areas and on these boundaries Brian Mawhinney would only have had a small majority in 1992 – I’m guessing about 2000 or so, I’m sure Pete will know. ”

    I’m not sure as I don’t have the figures in front of me but I recall posting recently that the boundary changes made Peterborough ever so slightly safer in percentage terms (although the numerical majority may well have been smaller as the electorate was). The areas which were removed to NW Cambs were/are by no means uniformly Tory and include some good Labour areas like Fletton. I think on balance they may have been slightly more Tory than the area they left behind, but they were replaced with the far more solidly Conservative Werrington which was previously in Huntingdon

  30. Pete is right. Here are the 1992 notionals (thanks to Andy JS)

    Con 26,455 (49.5%)
    Lab 20,201 (37.8%)
    LD 4,973 (9.3%)
    Oth 1,839 (3.4%)

    TOTAL 53,468

  31. Thanks both. IIRC the media at the time certainly made it sound like Mawhinney’s seat had been made much more marginal, though it wouldn’t be the first time they mis-reported the implication of boundary changes.

  32. Indeed – they pretty much allowed David Amess to get away with making out the boundary changes had made Basildon harder for him when it had if anything done the opposite and the most famously repeated lie of this kind is that Tony Benn was defeated in 1983 due to boundary changes. In fact the new Bristol East seat was significantly safer on the notional figures than his existing Bristol SE seat was

  33. Tony Benn even makes that claim in his own diaries.

  34. I think that there is some evidence that Helen Clark was unusually unpopular as the local MP by the time of her defeat. There probably has been a little bit of pro-Labour demographic change in terms of an increase in the Asian (mainly Pakistani Muslim I think) population, but that’s mainly been in areas which were Labour-inclined anyway. Bearing in mind that, as SJBME19 has pointed out, in nearby seats the Tories did extremely well in relation to 2005, it seems most likely that either Stewart Jackson is unusually unpopular (which I don’t think is likely, personally, despite the fact I can’t stand him), or more likely Clark, who was by this time noted for a mixture of eccentricity & (counter-intuitively) slavish devotion to Blair, was a major depressing factor on the Labour vote in 2005, which made it hard for Jackson to increase his majority that greatly. My dismissal of demographic change as a major factor is influenced by Labour’s pretty mediocre local election results, especially in 2011 (piss-poor wouldn’t be an unfair description of Labour’s results in Peterborough that year). I suspect Labour are working this pretty hard but it strikes me as a pretty unlikely gain. Jackson must be peeved at having so little first-time incumbency factor, so his lack of this factor in his favour won’t help Labour that much.

  35. I really don’t think you can blame Stewart Jackson’s poor performance in 2010 purely on the alleged unpopularity of the previous Labour MP.

    The fact is that most newly incumbent MPs will acquire some sort of personal vote after their first term. In addition please remember that there was a 5% nationwide swing to the Tories from 2005-10.

    The fact that Jackson failed to even hold his share of the vote in 2010 almost certainly says something about how his electorate views him as an individual.

    For the record, I’ve had five Tory opponents in my time. When I was a candidate for the SDP in the 1986 Croydon Council elections I stood in the now-defunct 2-seater Rylands Ward; and when I was a candidate for Labour in the 1994 Ealing Council elections I stood in the now-defunct 3-seater Wood End Ward (and in that contest, one of my Tory opponents was Stewart Jackson).

    Out of the five, Jackson impressed me the least. In fact he launched quite a ferocious personal attack on me in the local newspaper before he had even met me, yet when he did finally meet me (we bumped into each other while canvassing) he was sheepishly polite.

    I didn’t think much of his behaviour at the counting of votes, either. My election agent had succeeded in forcing two recounts and Jackson became visibly irritated by this.

    It was a ward that everyone had assumed the Tories would comfortably hold and at first it did indeed look like another clear-cut Conservative victory until some of the Labour block vote bundles were discovered in the Tory shelf.

    Incidentally, this was neither the first nor the last time that Ealing’s “Democratic Services” department had made a complete hash of an election count, and in fact they declared the result for the neighbouring West End Ward before realising that some vote bundles from that ward had been accidentally mixed up with the Wood End Ward bundles (and incredibly the West End Ward result was never changed to reflect the error).

    But I digress. I certainly wouldn’t say this about every constituency, but based on what I’ve heard about Lisa Forbes and what I know about Stewart Jackson this is one seat where the Labour candidate wins hands down on the issue of calibre.

    But can she actually win this? I’ve explained elsewhere why I don’t think there will be a significant nationwide Con/Lab swing and so in my view she’s got a pretty herculean task on her hands.

    With no national swing, a 10% margin is not going to be easy to overwhelm, and please bear in mind that Jackson’s negative personal vote is already in the equation.

  36. In responding to H.Hemmelig, my point was – as a local and someone who follows local politics a bit – he delivers leaflets, is always active in the paper, has a good reputation as a constituency MP. He is very outspoken sometimes but he’s not afraid to hold people like the Tory Council to account. People do not want MPs who are mindless career politicians – I would vote for a candidate that isn’t afraid to speak out and challenge the Council, the hospital, the police or other institutions when they get it wrong – than one that slavishly follows the party line and sucks up to everyone. He rebelled over Europe, gay marriage and has challenged a few other votes. Has Lisa Forbes (Labour candidate) every had a conscience of her own and voted against Labour Party policy at the Council? Probably not.

    I am also NOT a party member and have never stood for Council or gone to a political meeting – all I’m saying is if I still haven’t received one piece of literature from the other parties mentioning the election, then it’s likely no one else in this area has either. Any political party has to put in the footwork.

    As for the comment above, I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that Labour partisans are slagging off Stewart based on allegations that happened 20 years ago in Ealing!

  37. “My dismissal of demographic change as a major factor is influenced by Labour’s pretty mediocre local election results, especially in 2011 (piss-poor wouldn’t be an unfair description of Labour’s results in Peterborough that year)”

    Demographic change is the biggest advantage that Labour have given themselves in the past decade and a half. To pretend otherwise would be to ignore the truth. You trying to play down demographic change helping Labour is as silly as me trying to pretend that Cameron really understands the plight of the ordinary person (which he most certainly does not and I doubt he cares either). There has been more than a “little bit of pro-Labour demographic change” here and elsewhere in the country. The difference now is those WWC/LMC Labour voters who voted for New Labour by and large switched to Cameron in 2010, not because they really liked him (or the Tories) but they felt that Labour had neglected them.

    The Tories will hold Peterborough in 2015 despite the wind blowing in the opposite direction and the fact that the seat is not in London means that demographic change may slow here a bit but all in all I see Peterborough heading in the same direction as Luton and eventually Slough. I also think Jackson is good for this seat with his anti EU rhetoric etc which may help to stem the flow of votes to UKIP.

    One of the problems Labour have in local elections is that many people who vote Labour nationally do not bother to vote in local elections, allowing other parties to benefit. Muslim voters however can be very reliable if the candidate is Muslim themselves – this tends to be the case in East/North East London. You also have a minority of national Labour voters who vote Tory on a local level as they see Tory councils as being better run. My friends parents are a perfect example of this.

  38. I think its a combination of the two factors – both MPs are in my mind one of the weakest ones in their respective parties. Stewart Jackson is exactly the sort of person to put off swing voters.

    P.S. Leslie – I wouldn’t call Robin Hood is a Labour partisan, partly because he joined the SDP and secondly as he is extremely pessimistic.

  39. ‘I also think Jackson is good for this seat with his anti EU rhetoric etc which may help to stem the flow of votes to UKIP.’

    It hasn’t worked that way so far given that UKIP did pretty well here in 2010

    Whilst I’m sure Jackson’s brand of right-wing populism is popular with some of his constituents, combined with his dislikeability as an individual, it can only put potential swing voters off – as Joe states – and the result in 2010 stands out as one of the Tories worst in an area (East Midlands) where overall they did rather well

  40. True Tim

    But Jackson has been a great deal more vocal this parliament then he was pre 2010. Likeability is obviously important…I wonder what makes him unlikeable?

  41. I’m not sure it’s fair to say he’s unlikeable – LBernard makes the important point that the demographics of Peterborough are moving backwards against both Labour and the Conservatives. His stance on many things will ring chords with much of the electorate.

    People on here always seem to make the mistake of classing ‘swing voters’ as being in a black and white Labour v Conservative arena – neglecting to realise that they are also in a Labour v UKIP and Conservative v UKIP etc. Maybe he might not win the lefty liberal vote ‘swing voters’, but there are also many disillusioned Tory voters and UKIP voters who remain strong fans of Jackson – despite their views on Cameron & Co and might have otherwise left the Conservatives for UKIP in 2015.

    Remember, UKIP won over 3000 votes in Peterborough in 2010, and those votes are up for grabs – Stewart Jackson’s actions over his term in parliament will no doubt secure any major slippage to UKIP.

    Labour may remain the main opposition, but anyone will realise that for any votes they pick up from the Tories, they will also lose voters who backed them at the last election to UKIP.

    You’ve got to remember that Stewart Jackson has twice won a demographically tough, urban multi ethnic seat with a cumulative swing of 13% since 1997, with only minor boundary changes. He must be doing something right by the voters of Peterborough?

  42. As a resident, I have to say Jackson’s reputation is that of a no-nonsense, straight talking exponent of common sense and fairness. Yes he is Tory – so he approaches things from that perspective. But he certainly works hard on stuff which is not party political. His proposals on housing are correct – and he is trying to position Peterborough as city with a future, and promoting economic growth based on something other than the public sector and agriculture! He is ahead of the field in that respect.

    As has been said earlier, he stands up for the constituent even when it means taking on his own Government or local council. Can’t see Ms. Forbes doing that. Anyway – she doesn’t even live in the Constituency and has not really impressed on the council.

    I think he will hold the seat (even given the demographic changes in places like Park Ward) and that’s a good thing because with ten years under his belt, he has experience.

    Sure, his personality isn’t to everyone’s liking – and he doesn’t take any prisoners, but at least he has passion and some beliefs – even if I disagree with some of them. Do we need ‘cuddly’ people in Parliament – or do we need people willing to stand up and fight a bit?

  43. But being likeable is an essential part of being an MP

    Look at someone like Gerald Howarth who has held Aldershot since 1997 – a nadir year for the Tories – yet has seen his majortity decrease in every subsequent election – well against the national trend

    Now Howath is a hard-working, conscientious MP whose robust views on things like immigration and defence would ceratainly ring chords with many of his constituents – and yet even his strongest supporters would concede he is not likeable and this has definitely had an impact on the Tory vote here

    Especially so considering his predecessor was the arch wet Julian Criitchley whose moderate views would be much moire out of synch with this electorate, yet who held the seat with towering five-figure majorities. His most notable trait was his likeabilty

  44. Tim’s right to a certain extent about likeability. In Stewart Jackson’s case however, more important than him being dislikeable is the fact that he is widely seen as a bit of a twat…as much by those on his own side as by opponents. Robin Hood’s post shows that this unfortunate image has been present throughout Stewart Jackson’s earlier political career as well as since he was elected in Peterborough.

    “Remember, UKIP won over 3000 votes in Peterborough in 2010, and those votes are up for grabs – Stewart Jackson’s actions over his term in parliament will no doubt secure any major slippage to UKIP.”

    That is complete and utter horseshit. There are plenty of reasons to expect significant further slippage to UKIP, though perhaps because they will get some Labour votes as well, it’s unlikely to lose the Tories the seat.

    Finally I would like to point “Leslie S” and “Skipton” to the comments policy, which bans sockpuppeting on this site. They should at least make sure their writing style isn’t exactly the same if they want to get away with it.

  45. ‘As has been said earlier, he stands up for the constituent even when it means taking on his own Government or local council.’

    It would be a huge indictment of his nine years in office if he didn’t

    All MPs choose to portray themselves as local champions of the areas they represent, willing to stand up for their constituents – and Jackson is no different

    But whereas most of his Tory colleagues who won their seats in 2005 were seeing huge swings in their favour, Jackson didn’t – and UKIP’s high vote in a seat that has a right-wing MP who is far closer to UKIP in policy terms than his own party, there has to be some basis to what Robin Hood and H Hemelig are saying about Jackson

  46. HH – Not the same person (Or at least, the IP addresses are from completely different places and I know exactly who “Leslie” is as it’s someone I know personally. People I know certainly wouldn’t go about sock puppetting on MY website. If they are being “Skipton”, then stop it!)

    [Edit – wrong way round, I know who Leslie is, not Skipton]

  47. Firstly, what is ‘sockpuppeting’? If it is (as I suspect) having more than one identity then I invite the moderators of this site to compare the IP address of myself with Leslie S, and delete both posts if they are the same person. They are not – which I know will disappoint those who attack the messenger because they cannot attack the message – but there you go

    And now to the nonsense written:

    1. “But whereas most of his Tory colleagues who won their seats in 2005 were seeing huge swings in their favour, Jackson didn’t”. Tim Jones

    Really – why didn’t Cameron win an overall majority then? If Jackson is as unpopular as you portray, why didn’t Ed Murphy win?

    The facts are as follows: in 2010, the Labour candidate polled nearly 5% fewer votes than Helen Clarke did in 2005, which was itself a 10% reduction on her 2001 result. Labour dropped from 45% of the vote in 2001 to 29% in 2010.

    To the contrary, Jackson’s vote has increased numerically in each of the three elections he stood in. Although his percentage of the vote fell in 2010, this was probably due to the UKIP vote increasing by a slightly larger amount than Jackson’s fell by.

    As you have all noted – UKIP takes from the Tories most – so no surprise his vote decreased as a percentage roughly in line with UKIP’s increase.

    2. ” In Stewart Jackson’s case however, more important than him being dislikeable is the fact that he is widely seen as a bit of a twat…”

    Really? Not where I live he isn’t. Robust, forceful and not particularly bothered with the opinions of his detractors – but so what. We would all like doctors, lawyers and teachers to be nice too – bit not at the expense of their competence and ability to get stuff done!

    3. “Look at someone like Gerald Howarth who has held Aldershot since 1997 – a nadir year for the Tories – yet has seen his majortity decrease in every subsequent election – well against the national trend”

    Sorry – that is utterly wrong. Howarth: In fact his percentage in 1997 was 42.7%. In 2001 it was 42.2% and then it INCREASED in 2005 to 42.7. In 2010 it ‘collapsed’ by increasing to nearly 48%. So how is that “seeing his majortity (sic) decrease in every subsequent election”

    Aldershot was a military town and even Options for Change, the loss of 3 Para to Colchester and the recent MOD reconfiguration has not affected the tendency of military types in Hampshire to vote Tory! Look at Gosport – same sceanrio where anyone in a blue rossette – even a blonde bird like Caroline Dinenage would get elected with a thumping majority. The military are not big fans of Labour or the Liberals in the same way the public sector workers are not big fans of the Tories.

    If you are going to slag Jackson off, at least be bothered to do your homework first – or else you are the one looking like ‘a bit of a twat’.

  48. ” In Stewart Jackson’s case however, more important than him being dislikeable is the fact that he is widely seen as a bit of a twat…”

    Really? Not where I live he isn’t.’

    Of course you’re going to say that becase you’re a Tory who obviously voted for him

    No matter how you try and twist it the fact is that in strark contrast to his similarly right-wing colleagues who won their seats in 2005 in neighbouring areas, Jackson’s share of the vote decreased

    So did Labours – but that was repeated throughout the country, whereas 90% of Tories in England saw their vote share go up

    That on its own tells you he can’t be as brilliant a candidate as you are trying to suggest he is

    As for Geard Gowarth his majorities have been thus:
    1997 – 6621
    2001 – 6594
    2005 – 5334
    2010 – 5586

    Okay it went up as tiny amount in 2010, but for a seat like Aldershot – which as you say is as Tory as they come – is a poor result and I stribgly suspect the reason is because he’s not a likeable fellow

    And to suggest that UKIP’s 3000 votes are up for grabs – when it looks very likely that they will better their 2010 performance in 2015 quite easdily (and I’m someone who doesn’t think they will do great) is again wrong

    If Jackson couldn’t win them in 2010, he has even less chance of winning them in 2015

  49. Surely Gerald Howarths personality was already known and factored in – so something else must be causing his problems.

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