Suffolk Coastal

2015 Result:
Conservative: 28855 (51.9%)
Labour: 10013 (18%)
Lib Dem: 4777 (8.6%)
Green: 3294 (5.9%)
UKIP: 8655 (15.6%)
MAJORITY: 18842 (33.9%)

Category: Very safe Conservative seat

Geography: Eastern, Suffolk. Most of the Suffolk Coastal council area and the four southernmost wards from Waveney.

Main population centres: Felixstowe, Woodbridge, Aldeburgh, Leiston, Saxmundham, Martlesham, Halesworth, Southwold.

Profile: A long thin seat, covering most of Suffolk`s coast with the exception of Lowestoft in the north. The largest town is Felixstowe at the souhern end of the seat, the busiest container port in the UK which deals with about a third of the container cargo going in and out of the country. Further north the seat is a mixture of small market towns, villages and quiet coastal towns. It includes Woodbridge, close to the important archeological site of Sutton Hoo and RAF Woodbridge, home to the 23 Engineer Regiment (Air Assault); Aldeborough, the administrative headquarters of Suffolk Coastal council and the well-to-do seaside town of Southwold, home of Adnams Brewery. The constituency also includes the two nuclear power stations at Sizewell.

Politics: Suffolk Coastal has been held by the Conservatives since its creation in 1983, generally relatively comfortably, although the Conservative majority dropped below 5000 in the Labour landslide years of 1997 and 2001. Until 2010 it was represented by former cabinet minister John Selwyn Gummer, whose son Ben now represents the neighbouring seat of Ipswich. Until 1832 part of the seat was one of the most notorious rotten boroughs. Dunwich was once an important port and market town, but over the centuries was mostly washed into the sea due to coastal erosion. Despite this it retained the right to return two members of Parliament. Today Dunwich remains as a small coastal village.


Current MP
THERESE COFFEY (Conservative) Born 1971, Wigan. Educated at St Edwards College and Oxford University. Former finance director. Contested Wrexham 2005, South East region 2009 European elections. First elected as MP for Suffolk Coastal in 2010. Government whip 2014-2015. Deputy Leader of the House of Commons since 2015.
Past Results
2010
Con: 25475 (46%)
Lab: 8812 (16%)
LDem: 16347 (30%)
UKIP: 3156 (6%)
Oth: 1103 (2%)
MAJ: 9128 (17%)
2005*
Con: 23415 (45%)
Lab: 13730 (26%)
LDem: 11637 (22%)
UKIP: 2020 (4%)
Oth: 1755 (3%)
MAJ: 9685 (18%)
2001
Con: 21847 (43%)
Lab: 17521 (35%)
LDem: 9192 (18%)
UKIP: 1847 (4%)
MAJ: 4326 (9%)
1997
Con: 21696 (39%)
Lab: 18442 (33%)
LDem: 12036 (21%)
Oth: 666 (1%)
MAJ: 3254 (6%)

*There were boundary changes after 2005

Demographics
2015 Candidates
THERESE COFFEY (Conservative) See above.
RUSSELL WHITING (Labour) Born Ipswich. Educated at Nottingham University.
JAMES SANDBACH (Liberal Democrat) Contested Castle Point 2005, Putney 2010.
DARYLL PITCHER (UKIP) Educated at Portsmouth University. Isle of Wight councillor since 2013.
RACHEL SMITH-LYTE (Green)
Links
Comments - 31 Responses on “Suffolk Coastal”
  1. Russell Whiting has been selected as Labour candidate for Suffolk Coastal. The link below is a clip of him speaking at the 2010 Labour conference.

    Interestingly, he was a member of Broxtowe CLP at that time, and had previously been a Conservative Party member and a member of Conservatives for Nick Palmer:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yhtn2F6RPOw&amp

  2. Therese Coffey was reselected in July:

    http://suffolkcoastalconservatives.com/487/487-2

  3. Prediction for 2015-
    Coffey (Conservative)- 44%
    Labour- 20%
    Liberal Democrats- 18%
    UKIP- 13%
    Green- 2%
    Others- 3%

  4. CON HOLD MAJ : 16%
    CON 39
    LAB 23
    LD 20
    UKIP 12
    GRN 6

  5. TheResults has to be closer there. I don’t see why this seat would swing by as much as 7% to Labour when the average is almost certainly going to be a good deal less than that.

  6. The Lib Dems will probably fall back by a fair amount here, back to somewhere near their 2001 level- be surprised if it’s even lower, though I suppose anything is possible.

  7. I have to say I hadn’t realised what a poor result the Tories got here in 2010. Was it boundary changes, the loss of John Gummer’s personal vote, or Therese Coffey being an A-lister?

    It does suggest though that the Tories might bounce back a bit next time.

  8. I think an increase in the majority for the Tories here under Coffey is highly likely personally.

  9. Rachel Smith-Lyte selected for the Greens.

  10. James Sandbach is the LibDem PPC here

  11. This could be a surprise UKIP gain

  12. I spent a good deal of my childhood here as it’s where my grandparents retired. Many happy memories of Southwold beach and pier.

    I can’t see it going UKIP. It has an elderly age profile (48% of the population are aged 55+) and some NIMBYish tendencies but also a fair amount of wealth and owner-occupied properties. They will have plenty of support here but not enough to win.

  13. I only know one millionaire in the UK and he is a UKIP supporter . Just throwing that out there.

  14. Even if they did win 128 seats as the Survation poll appears to predict I doubt if this would be one of them. Felixstowe has some UKIP potential but not much of the rest of the constituency does.

  15. Felixtowe is actually a surprisingly nice place, in complete contrast to the Lowestofts, Clactons and Yarmouths we are endlessly wittering about on here.

    The key factor is the prosperity of the container port, which is still expanding and indeed is soon to see its rail link electrified (Frederic Stansfield will be pleased). This is one bit of the Anglian coast that is not economically reliant on dwindling seaside tourism and B&B benefit hostels.

    UKIP’s policies are a direct threat to the viability of the port, at least in the medium term. I wouldn’t expect them to do that well here in comparison with neighbouring seats.

  16. I know this seat a bit and I think it’s too well-to-do for UKIP to win. There aren’t enough angry and digruntled voters. It’s quite a “happy” area, however simplistic that might sound.

  17. What survation poll put UKIP over 100 seats? Dear lord that’d be big big shake up. They only have 11 target seats!

  18. Look in the main thread. One poll sampled immediately after Clacton by Survation had topline figures of C 31 Lab 31 UKIP 25, which would probably mean more than 100 UKIP MPs. But it would be unwise to read too much into that one poll, to say the least.

  19. There were polls suggested 120 Lib Dem MPs in April 2010 as well. See how that turned out.

  20. Conceivably the ones suggesting 300-odd Labour MPs now might prove to be fluff as well.

  21. Just realised I just said ‘dear lord.’ This site is actually turning me into a posh head.

    I think come 2015 there will be about 275 labour seats and around 285 tory seats.

  22. Conceivably. Although they are still much more frequent and consistent than the one UKIP 25%

  23. Survation’s polling suggest that they might not be fully clued up to the First Past the Post voting system. UKIP could poll an impressive national share of the vote (possibly 3rd place if the Lib Dems really crash and burn on the popular vote), but if it’s spread across the land it won’t result in many seats. Either Diane James or Suzanne Evans (can’t remember who) said that UKIP plan to field candidates in all 650 seats. Might not be the smartest idea given that they only have so many resources to fight on the ground. Especially where the bigger parties have more troops to place in constituencies. Seeing as how there are UKIP-friendly seats between Grimsby down to South Thanet, they need to pick and choose which of those in-between (and especially Boston & Skegness) would be best to focus their campaign. Other clusters of UKIP potential are in Plymouth, a seat or two in Cornwall, the Black Country and some ex-industrial towns of the north like Rotherham.

  24. The Lib Dems didn’t fare that well in a lot of counties in England in 2001, and Suffolk was one of them.
    1. Bury St Edmunds- 13.9%, -4.3%
    2. Central Suffolk and North Ipswich- 16.1%, -4.5%
    3. South Suffolk- 24.9%, -2.8%
    4. Suffolk Coastal- 18.2%, -3.2%
    5. West Suffolk- 11.8%, -2.2%

  25. Lots of changes here since 2010. LibDems were the popular centre-left option for those not happy with the management of the country in 2010. But they sold out their voters with undue haste and for very little in return. Instead of balancing and moderating the policies of the 2010 government, they instead enabled a lot of extreme right wing policies and ensured that policies no centre-left voter would support made it into legislation.

    So I think the LibDems have had it round here for at least a decade.

    I’m not sure that Labour would be a popular choice, even though they are hardly a left wing party any more. That leaves the Greens and UKIP.

    The Greens have some very good policies, but also some weird ones. They also come across as being very amateurish and unprofessional.

    UKIP voters are knee-jerk reactionaries. They don’t think things through, imho, but want to vote against the other parties on a particularly narrow perception of issues. Theyou ignore the facts that the NHS would be replaced with an expensive American system, the legalisation of handguns on our streets, and the loss of an inconvenient (to UKIP) Human Rights Act all take second place to xenophobia.

    So who is going to get the LibDems’ former votes? Very hard to predict. All three opposition parties have their issues. An Thérèse Coffey isn’t a Ben Gummer.

    This might be a closer run than it at first appears from the 2010 results. I look forward to seeing future local poll results.

  26. Comfortable hold for the lovely Miss Coffey.

    Conservative: 43%
    Labour: 22%
    Liberal Democrats- 21%
    UKIP: 11%
    Others: 3%

  27. The picture of Miss Coffey isn’t flattering. Do you go for women who look like they have a tea cosy on their head?

  28. UKIP from 6% to 11% doesn’t seem likely to me. They got double the national average in 2010.

  29. Conservative Hold. 14,000 maj.

  30. Therese Coffey has been released from hospital.

    She stood down as a Minister just over a week ago, to deal with an infection.

    That leaves 8 MPs who are away on sick leave (6 Lab, 2 Cons, 1 SNP).

  31. Gummer denies the Mail on Sunday front page allegation.

    Reminds me of troughing Yeo.

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