2015 Result:
Conservative: 6688 (20%)
Labour: 18755 (56%)
Lib Dem: 1244 (3.7%)
Green: 1643 (4.9%)
UKIP: 5139 (15.4%)
MAJORITY: 12067 (36.1%)

Category: Ultra-safe Labour seat

Geography: North West, Lancashire. Most of Preston council area.

Main population centres: Preston.

Profile: The middle slice of the city of Preston - the northern suburbs of Fulwood and Sharoe Green are in Wyre and Preston North, while places south of the river Ribble like Penwortham are outside the city boundaries and included in the South Ribble constituency. Preston is a Victorian industrial town and the administrative centre for Lancashire. The old textile industry and much of the manufacturing that replaced it in the twentieth century have now gone, with major employment sectors now including retail, distribution, call centres and the defence industry (BAE Systems have two major facilities located in villages to the east and west of Preston). There is a significant asian and Muslim population in the seat, with 19% of the population giving their ethnicity as asian in the 2011 census.

Politics: Before 1983 Preston had two constituencies, Preston North and Preston South, which were both close marginals between Labour and the Conservatives. Since the creation of a single Preston seat and the removal of the more affluent suburbs of Preston into neighbouring seats it has been a reliable Labour constituency, held by the left winger Audrey Wise and, since 2000, by Mark Hendrick.

Current MP
MARK HENDRICK (Labour) Born 1958, Salford. Educated at Salford Grammar School and Liverpool Polytechnic. Former engineer and lecturer. Salford councillor 1987-1995. Contested MEP for Central Lancashire 1994-1999. First elected as MP for Preston in 2000 by-election. PPS to Margaret Beckett 2003-2007, PPS to Jack Straw 2007-2008, PPS to Ivan Lewis 2009-2010. Opposition whip 2010-2012.
Past Results
Con: 7060 (22%)
Lab: 15668 (48%)
LDem: 7935 (24%)
UKIP: 1462 (4%)
Oth: 380 (1%)
MAJ: 7733 (24%)
Con: 7803 (23%)
Lab: 17210 (50%)
LDem: 5701 (17%)
UKIP: 1049 (3%)
Oth: 2318 (7%)
MAJ: 9407 (28%)
Con: 8272 (23%)
Lab: 20540 (57%)
LDem: 4746 (13%)
GRN: 1019 (3%)
Oth: 1464 (4%)
MAJ: 12268 (34%)
Con: 10540 (22%)
Lab: 29220 (61%)
LDem: 7045 (15%)
Oth: 345 (1%)
MAJ: 18680 (39%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

2015 Candidates
RICHARD HOLDEN (Conservative)
MARK HENDRICK (Labour) See above.
JO BARTON (Liberal Democrat)
Comments - 79 Responses on “Preston”
  1. The forthcoming County council elections should see the city revert to type – Labour in Preston. Conservative in Fulwood.

    I note that the newly formed UKIP Preston branch aims to stand a full slate next month. I dare say they’ll do pretty terribly.

  2. County Council candidates in Preston:

    Con: 10
    Lab: 10
    LD: 8
    UKIP: 9
    Green: 6

    Most significant number of Green candidates since their Euro election “success”.

    UKIP miss out in Preston Central South, which is based on Deepdale and the student/young families bit of Plungington

  3. I know that this constituency lost Bamber Bridge & Walton-le-Dale in the last boundary changes; did it gain other territory in its place?

  4. Am I right in think the MP here stands for the Co-Operative Party as well as Labour?

    Perhaps Anthony might amend the biographies of the MPs concerned to show if they are Labour and Co-operative, rather than just Labour. This has not recently been very important, might it may be significant at the next General Election.

  5. Snooker players Stuart Pettman and Ian Burns both come from the eponymous city that makes up this constituency, the former retired a couple of years ago.

  6. Better late than never, Barnaby. This seat lost Bamber Bridge and Walton-l-D, and gained the Preston electoral ward of Ingol.

  7. thanks Dok. I can’t remember where Ingol came from – was it Fylde?

  8. I notice the Greens scored 2.8% across Lancashire while standing in only 30 out of the potential 86 wards. If they had stood in all wards, then based on their average polling, they’d have scored 7.4%.

    Current Prediction:
    LAB HOLD MAJ : 35%
    LAB 53
    CON 18
    LD 17
    UKIP 9
    GRN 3

  9. However if you discount the two divisions in Lancaster where they got around 40% then the average for the remaining 28 divisions would be only just over 5%.

  10. Oh right. Thanks Pete. So surely if they could notionally have scored 5%, the Greens could achieve 60% of that in a general election, 3%?

  11. Barnaby – yes

  12. thanks once more.

  13. The addition of ingol explains the rise to 2nd place of the lib Dems in 2010. If i remember Doc Bs lectures on Preston it’s a ld stronghold

  14. Yes, Ingol was previously in Ribble Valley I think, as was the rest of Fulwood. The loss of that area to Preston and the awkwardly named ‘Wyre and Preston North’ (why not Garstang?) was probably the main reason why the Lib Dems are so much weaker in the current Ribble Valley than in the pre-2010 version.

  15. Yes, I think the Lib Dems will have carried Ingol relatively cleanly in 2010- fairly split Tory-Labour opposition perhaps.

  16. Tory – DoktorB says that Ingol was in Fylde not Ribble Valley, unlike Fulwood. He is probably authoritative on matters appertaining to this city.

  17. Yes, sorry, I’ve checked again and he is right.

  18. I was confusing myself because on some definitions Ingol is part of Fulwood. IIRC it was part of the old Fulwood Urban District though again, I’m sure Doktor B will be the one to ask.

  19. Very sad to report the passing of a veteran local councillor here. Labour’s Tom Burns, most recently of Fishwick ward, died on Tuesday. RIP.

  20. Ingol is something of an oddity. It is Preston facing but geographically Fulwood.

  21. Has anybody noticed that outside London, and areas actively targetted by UKIP, the local elections last Thursday were perhaps remarkable for the lack of change between the major parties? Preston is a case in point.

  22. Preston often bucks the national trend, to be honest. UKIP has little organisation here so relied on the national mood to get them elected.

    It may interest the forum that the UKIP vote was higher in the southern Labour leaning Preston, than the northern Conservative leaning Fulwood.

  23. Adverts for the LibDem selection here (and Wyre/Preston North) to be uploaded soon.

    Unless somebody knows different, Mark Hendrick MP has yet to be readopted here.

  24. prediction for 2015-

    Lab- 51%
    Con- 20%
    Lib- 13%
    UKIP- 10%
    Green- 5%
    Christian- 1%

  25. Correction to my message – he is not the Tory PPC.

    And I would hope we’d get more than 13% next year!!

  26. Hope springs eternal. It’s probably one of Robbie’s less stupid predictions, though Labour would be extremely disappointed with only 51% (3% below 1992). UKIP at 10% would surely burn more into the Tory vote than a 2% drop from 2010.

  27. Worth pointing out that Lancashire (indeed the whole NW) is fairly slim pickings for UKIP. They under-perform here by a country mile.

  28. Yes that is a fair point

  29. Strange that they do. Any ideas why?

  30. Labour have kept the loyalty of the WWC in Manchester, Merseyside & environs much more solidly than in Yorkshire & the North East. One reason, I suspect, is that there is far less mining history west of the Pennines.

  31. The ethnic population here will be largely voting labour too and really it’s quite large.

  32. UKIP will get more than 10% here considering they got half that in 2010

  33. There is quite a strong WWC Tory vote in East Lancs, indeed there has been for quite a long time now. It is weaker however in Preston & Blackpool in particular. It isn’t that unusual to go through small towns & villages in Lancs which are full of quite humble owner-occupied terraces & find to slight surprise that the area tends to vote Conservative – I think it’s true in some of the less urban, non-coalfield areas of W Yorks too. But UKIP have yet to show much sign of attracting this vote, yes I’d agree.

  34. I think there may be a Catholic angle as well. UKIP aren’t as popular with people from that background even if they aren’t religious.

  35. Some interesting and valid points. There has been no BNP history in the west of Lancashire either, and I think the reason may be very similar to why UKIP fail to get much electoral support west of the Pennines.

    The idea that UKIP will get 10% just because they didn’t five years earlier is fanciful to me. Look at the most recent all-County election results – barely anything for UKIP and the last BNP councillor defeated.

  36. Southport Cllr Jo Barton chosen for the LibDems here.

  37. At least UKIP seem to be organise in the open. There used actually to be quite a strong BNP presence in this part of Lancashire, but they stayed below the surface and voted Conservative.

  38. Ric Holden chosen here for the Conservatives

  39. There has recently been comment on the Isle of Wight thread about Julian Amery’s alleged drunkenness.

    Given that Amery was MP for Preston North for a number of years, perhaps one should mention here that he continued to be n MP very much on the right of the Conservative Party even when his brother John Amery had been executed for his actions in Germany during the Second World War, when amongst other things he tried to recruit British prisoners of war (with extremely little success) to fight for Hitler.

  40. James Barker for UKIP here

  41. Green have announced they’re standing here – candidate is Gemma Christie

  42. easy this one lab hold 9000 to 9500. con to take 2nd from libdem.

  43. Labour Hold. 12,000 majority. Tories 2nd.

  44. Almost exactly right, Shaun!

  45. Preston was pretty much another example of a held seat where Labour stacked up their vote in the wrong places, while support was mediocre in target seats.

  46. I’m still baffled why the Tories poll quite well on Preston Council but have a pretty derisory vote in the Parliamentary seat.

    I know the boundaries go out beyond the centrally based Parliamentary seat – but it must be to the north as it’s South Ribble south of the river.

    They must go quite a long long way out.

  47. I think I do get the impression but it seems like it’s a real contrast between the two.

  48. Fulwood and some rural divisions – big difference to Preston central.

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