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Foyle

Notional 2005 Results:
SDLP: 19668 (46%)
SF: 14494 (33.9%)
DUP: 6046 (14.1%)
UUP: 988 (2.3%)
Other: 1553 (3.6%)
Majority: 5174 (12.1%)

2005 Result:
SDLP: 21119 (46.3%)
SF: 15162 (33.2%)
DUP: 6557 (14.4%)
Soc: 1649 (3.6%)
UU: 1091 (2.4%)
Rainbow: 31 (0.1%)
Majority: 5957 (13.1%)

Boundary Changes: Foyle ceases to be co-terminous with Derry City, losing the wards of Banagher and Claudy to East Londonderry.

Profile: Foyle covers Derry/Londonderry itself, the second city in Ulster, and the large village of New Buildings to the South. Derry has boomed in recent years with large amounts of new building and investment, but there remains a high level of unemployment and reliance on benefit. Historically this was a textile area, and the chemical company DuPont continue to produce Lycra and Kevlar (somewhat ironically the material for bulletproof clothing) here, employment though is now more dependent on the booming high tech industry.

The western side of the city around the old walled city is the catholic core of Derry. Despite redevelopment there is still much deprivation here in places like the Bogside and Creggan, these are the core of Republican Derry and come with many historical resonances from the Troubles. It was here in 1972 that 14 people were shot on Bloody Sunday. In many places the housing is dominated by the famous political murals commemorating the Troubles (most famously here the Derry Free Corner mural, a remnant of the Free Derry area controlled by the IRA until crushed by the British Army in Operation Motorman).

Across the river the Waterside area was traditionally more protestant, that has dwindled over the years as protestants have abandoned the west of Derry – now only the Fountain Estate remains as a protestant enclave in Derry, though there is a middle class protestant population dotted around the city and the village of New Buildings is overwhelmingly protestat. Overall Foyle is about three quarters catholic.

This was once the stronghold of John Hume, the leader of the SDLP, who served as MP here from its creation in 1983 until 2005 when Hume’s successor as SDLP leader, Mark Durkan, also succeeded to his seat.

portraitCurrent MP: Mark Durkan (SDLP) born 1960, Derry. Educated at St. Columb’s College and Queens University Belfast. Former aide to John Hume. Chairman of the SDLP 1990-1995. Member of the NI Assembly since 1998. NI Minister of Finance 1999-2001. Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland 2001-2002. Leader of the SDLP 2001-2010. First elected as MP for Foyle in 2005.

Candidates:
portraitMartina Anderson (Sinn Fein) Born 1962, Derry. Former IRA volunteer, convicted in 1986 of conspiracy to case explosions. Released in 1998 under the Good Friday Agreement. MLA for Foyle since 2007.
portraitDavid Harding (UCUNF) Vet. Coleraine councillor.

NB - The constituency guide is now archived and is no longer being updated. The new guide is at http://ukpollingreport.co.uk/2015guide