Islington North

2015 Result:
Conservative: 8465 (17.2%)
Labour: 29659 (60.2%)
Lib Dem: 3984 (8.1%)
Green: 5043 (10.2%)
UKIP: 1971 (4%)
Others: 112 (0.2%)
MAJORITY: 21194 (43%)

Category: Ultra-safe Labour seat

Geography: Greater London. Part of the Islington council area.

Main population centres: Tufnell Park, Archway, Finsbury Park, Highbury.

Profile: A compact, densely-populated inner-city seat in North London, the smallest in the country by area. While there is some gentrification this this seat covers some of the most deprived, troubled and crime-ridden parts of Islington, inclusing the huge Andover Estate. It includes HMP Holloway and Arsenal`s Emirates Stadium. Islington is a particular young area, and has the highest proportion of unmarried people in the country.

Politics: The constituency has been safely Labour since the 1930s, though the then sitting MP Michael O`Halloran defected to the SDP in 1981 and fought the seat as an independent in 1983, having lost the selection for the SDP nomination.

Current MP
JEREMY CORBYN (Labour) Born 1949, Chippenham. Educated at Adam`s Grammar School and North London Polytechnic. Former trade union organiser. Haringey councillor 1974-1983. First elected as MP for Islington North in 1983. Leader of the Labour Party since 2015. Jeremy Corbyn spent over thirty years on Labour`s backbenches, a stalwart member of the left-wing Campaign Group and Labour`s most rebellious MP. In the 2015 he was the left`s sacrificial candidate for the Labour leadership, reportedly because it was his turn. In the event he was not just competitive in the contest, but won a landslide victory.
Past Results
Con: 6339 (14%)
Lab: 24276 (54%)
LDem: 11875 (27%)
GRN: 1348 (3%)
Oth: 716 (2%)
MAJ: 12401 (28%)
Con: 3740 (12%)
Lab: 16118 (51%)
LDem: 9402 (30%)
GRN: 2234 (7%)
MAJ: 6716 (21%)
Con: 3249 (11%)
Lab: 18699 (62%)
LDem: 5741 (19%)
GRN: 1876 (6%)
Oth: 651 (2%)
MAJ: 12958 (43%)
Con: 4631 (13%)
Lab: 24834 (69%)
LDem: 4879 (14%)
Oth: 1516 (4%)
MAJ: 19955 (56%)

2015 Candidates
ALEX BURGHART (Conservative)
JEREMY CORBYN (Labour) See above.
JULIAN GREGORY (Liberal Democrat)
CAROLINE RUSSELL (Green) Islington councillor.
BILL MARTIN (Socialist Party GB)
Comments - 3,991 Responses on “Islington North”
  1. The most significant example of this in recent times being Karen Bradley’s admission that she didn’t understand the polarisation between unionists and republicans in Northern Ireland.

    I can imagine her mental cogs whirring as she thought to herself, “wow, these two groups of people who spent large chunks of the last hundred years trying to kill each other really don’t vote for each other. Who could have guessed that?”

  2. ‘The most significant example of this in recent times being Karen Bradley’s admission that she didn’t understand the polarisation between unionists and republicans in Northern Ireland.’

    Bradley was as well suited to that job as Patel and Raab are to head the Home and Foreign office respectively]

    Whilst most politicians to be fair are considerably above average intelligence, it makes no sense to hand plum role to those that aren’t

  3. Tim – but you are again letting your prejudice get in the way of the facts.

    Raab is both objectively intelligent and suited to that role from his CV. A First in Law, prosecuting war crimes at the Hague and so on.

    It reminds me of those on here who derided Fox [because they hate his views] as both unsuitable for Health and not bright compared with a certain Labour Education spokeswoman who left school after having failed all of her exams! Their CVs speak for themselves, especially in their 20s.

    There are many examples of intelligent Labour people (although I’d argue far fewer than in the days of Peter Shore and Tony Benn) in the House and stupid Tory MPs, but not the ones referenced on here.

  4. Next GE Odds

    Cons 2/5
    Lab 7/2

    Labour to win a majority 12/1

    Next Lab Leader Starmer 5/1 (now ahead of all of the women)

  5. Kevin Maguire on the Sky News Paper Review was right in predicting that a couple of chicken suits have been spotted.

    He opined that the Sun or Express were likely to doorstep [or follow them on College Green] Jezza or Thornberry et al in the same way the Mirror used to follow Major around in the dying days of his Govt.

  6. I didn’t see it, but I understand Andrew Neil was his usual self and totally defenestrated Corbyn on BBC last night.

    A review today said he refused four times to apologise for anti-Semitism in the Party. He admitted the abolition of the married couples’ allowance would mean tax rises would affect the average taxpayer and not just the top 5% and he refused to say that a marauding terrorist should be shot dead.

    I expect Boris & Swinson to be attacked in the same way, as none of them appear good on detail.

  7. That’s if Boris agrees – they still haven’t got him to agree a date.

  8. The most astonishing thing about the interview was that he seemed more remorseful about his implementing much-needed middle-class tax rises than any of the thing he should have been apologising for!

    Still, it won’t touch the polls. Already been forgotten, 24 hours later – I suspect the party had been sitting for a while on that US trade dossier, for deployment when they really needed it.

  9. The climate change part of the trade deal is getting noticed on social media. Saw someone I went to Uni with and who has never posted anything political posting about it. Could be something that moves even more of the remain vote back to Labour.

  10. The BBC’s Chris Mason says Labour wants to plant billions of trees here by 2040, which works out as:

    200 trees per minute, 24/7 and a forest the size of Wales!

  11. Planting trees is great and I certainly support a target that isn’t as unachievable as some are saying; certainly it’s a far more realistic target than decarbonising within ten years. My concern is where those trees are going to be planted; I suspect that he is treating them as a resource to be enjoyed by people, and will want to put them right on the edge of conurbations. But that’s just catnip for NIMBYs, the worst and most powerful special interest group in Britain, and in my opinion the trees should purely be seen as carbon sinks and kept as far away from civilisation as possible.

  12. AFAIK a national strategy was in fact agreed last year: one by a quango of sorts and the other by a charity.

    Frank Field gained approval from HM Queen for the Commonwealth Canopy of trees (I forget but think it’s 1m+ trees over the next decade).

    Plus the Woodland Trust are currently giving away 150,000 trees for free to anyone with a Nectar card.

    I agree with most of what you said except the last sentence: randomly planting them on rural hillsides would if anything spoil the landscape.

  13. Andrew Neil has ran rings round every politician he has interviewed on the BBC thus far, although the Corbyn interview was particularly brutal

  14. Best PM:

    Leavers: 76% BJ v 6% JC

    Working class: 46% BJ v 17 JC%

    Women 32% BJ v 20% JC

    18 – 24s: 32% BJ v 29% JC

    Even London was neck and neck

  15. There will be an almighty effort by ‘the centrists’ to get like minded people to join Labour between now and the cut off date, 20th January.

  16. A day after the closure of Parliament, we are told the PM has caught Covid19. I hope he recovers quickly & fully.

    He was very conciliatory and generous to the LOTO yesterday who was heard with respect and silence in the HoC at PMQs. It’s a terrible shame and regret that in PMQs, Corbyn was shouted down, howled at and ridiculed right from the off way back in September 2015. And also had to endure with stony faced unfriendliess by most of his own MPs!

    He’s now saying, “I’ve been proved right”. Well he was, wasn’t he?

  17. No, not at all and if he honestly believes that, then he’s more stupid than I thought he was.

    He wanted to spend billions more as a matter of course. These are largely emergency loans etc. Quite apart from the fact that he was wrong on almost every major issue from Salisbury to anti-Semitism and Momentum. He can now return to the backbenchers and the amusing oddity he always was.

  18. Difficult to judge Corbyn’s reaction to this crisis since he’s been pretty invisible since December. I think the “told you so” stuff is motivated reasoning of the highest order; and even if he had a point, I’m not sure it would be that helpful to the overriding goals of saving lives in the next twelve months and making sure we have a liberal, dynamic society to get back to afterwards.

    This is a very difficult time in which to be leader of the opposition. Scrutiny of the government must obviously continue, but opposition will be strangely non-ideological because, for this duration of the pandemic, the Tories and Labour will have exactly the same goals. (This is something that is yet to catch up with a certain sort of left-wing culture warrior.) Instead, opposition will need to be measured, analytical, conciliatory and constructive, geared towards pointing out and rectifying government errors, rather than having a “gotcha” at PMQs which you can pump our on your social media channels.

    That’s a tough gig for Corbyn, well outside his comfort zone. But I suspect it’s a role in which Keir Starmer will excel. He’ll br 2020’s Attlee to Boris’s Churchill.

  19. If Corbyns comments are motivated its clearly doing him no harm. Last three polls; Opinium, Ipsos and Number Cruncher all show Corbyns personal ratings improving. No where near as good as Rishi Sunak who has taken the country by storm and is as popular as 2002 Tony Blair

  20. Latest polls show the Tories on 54%.

    Thanks JC – you ended as well as you began.

  21. It really is extraordinary. With those kinds of ratings, Boris is the luckiest Prime Minister since early Blair, and looks set to dominate the political scene for as long as he did (God willing, that he only suffers mildly from the virus himself). The recession in 2020 which was always going to happen anyway, as they come along every 10 years or so, will now be known as the Coronavirus recession not the Brexit recession, giving the government an easy get out of jail free card politically.

  22. The support for the Tories is less to do woth Corbyn than it is to do with Corona. Pretty much every government is receiving a boost from public showing of unity. Trumps personal ratings are 12% higher than they were and unemployment has shot through the roof. He could be the first President to win re election during a recession

  23. It depends where you believe the “rally round the flag” effect comes from. In my view it’s more just a form of motivated reasoning – people in a crisis know they can’t do anything about who’s in charge, and want to feel safe. Obviously this calculation would change if voters *could* do something about it. Hence I am kind of disregarding non-covid polling for the duration, it’s fairly meaningless data in my eyes.

    Though I do agree that the recent polling gaps are not Corbyn’s fault, and the dreaded “centrists” (for want of a better word) have painted themselves into a corner over the notion that “Starmer would be ten points ahead.”

  24. Matt W – except Spain’s and Italy’s Govts, of course!

    Populists are popular and so it’s not surprising that those who called Trump racist (as well as telling New Yorkers to still party & go to restaurants etc) – when he stopped flights from China – are now regretting that call. Cuomo (unlike De Blasio) is usually accurate and decent and I like him, unlike his brother on CNN. But he was apparently offered 30,000 ventilators 6 months ago for emergency use but he declined and only ordered 6,000.

    The Dems appear incapable of assessing public opinion. Indeed they only supported the stimulus by larding it with their favourite pork: 350m for illegals & refugees, 120m for the Kennedy Center for the Arts & 87m for PBS tv. The Kennedy Center then promptly made the orchestra redundant.

    Will anyone even notice if/when Starmer and Biden become their Parties’ choice.

  25. Lega Nord appear to continue to have a healthy lead over SD while their junior partners 5 Star have crashed and burned. I have not checked up on Spain for some time.

    Edit: Pedro Sachez appears to be dominating his rivals in popularity. Not as much as the Tories atm but all the same.

    No, no one will know or care when Keir Biden become leader

  26. Corbyn was destroyed unfairly and wrongly – and that it is dangerous for our democracy, according to ex Telegraph, Spectator and Daily Mail columnist, Peter Oborne:

  27. Important to note that Peter Oborne is not a former conservative who has undergone a Damascene conversion. He’s just discovered that being a fringe-left outrider is a lucrative grift, and being the cold-hearted capitalist he is, he cannot resist the lure of the invisible hand, even when pitched against his former principles.

    At least Jones, Sarkar, Blakely et al believe what the stuff they write. I actually have more respect for them than I do for this calculating turncoat.

  28. Are we close to seeing Corbyn losing the Party Whip after he criticised the Starmer decision to pay out to the makers of the Panorama tv show? Perhaps it’ll wait till after the telling off from the report of the Equalities and Human Rights Commission in September and the inevitable contention of the findings from Corbyn.

  29. Dan Hodges tweeted earlier that senior Labour sources distance themselves from any suggestion that Corbyn will have the whip removed.

    Meanwhile Labour members have raised £150,000 in 48 hours for Corbyns legal fees after the news that John Ware would be challenging Corbyns statement about the settlement

  30. Now £280,000. Now there’s rumours that the Labour ex staff / whistleblowers are asking the party for the expulsion of Corbyn in return for them dropping their law suits.

  31. Yes I read that. This is becoming a very difficult wire for Starmer to balance on. There are rumours that these lawsuits could cost the party 8 million and would basically bankrupt the party for the next local elections. Initially people were trying to blame Corbyn for the costly fees but now Starmer is facing increasing pressure. Sources report ex staffers saying:

    ‘it’s no Corbyn or no money, Starmer’s choice’

    I spoke to a friend earlier who said that while he didn’t like Corbyn he didn’t really think he should be expelled. Ayesha Hazerika has written for the Guardian something similar. Saying expulsion will only organise the left further against Starmer at a difficult juncture with the NEC elections.

    Something has to give though and someone’s going to be upset. The Campaign Against Anti-Semitism have written that Starmer must expel Corbyn and has already critised him for failing to suspend Diane Abbott.

    He’s already settled once but there’s a lot of money on the line and while it’s not the first time Labour has been in the red 8 million seems a lot. Rightly or wrongly a poll of Labour members has Corbyn one of most popular leaders. Could throwing water out throw the baby out too? Starmer has worked hard to remain on party members side. This week the party reaffirmed its support for abolishing tuition fees. This carefully constructed coalition might be at breaking point.

    The ex staffer goes on to say:

    ‘zero tolerance to anti semitism means no Corbyn or corbynites’

    They won’t stop with Corbyn and maybe that means they’ll be pressure on Starmer to expel left members who voted for Corbyn like me. I hope not. I don’t have any other hobbies

  32. At what point do you leave? What would make you say – that’s It, no more and walk away?

    It’s hocking how incidents/comments have been spun so skilfully so as to reach this stage. There were comparatively very few genuine cases of anti Jewish behaviour within Labour and not one incident reported at a meeting. Most of it appears to be as a result of squabbles online usually during a conversation about the Isr/Pal conflict.

    Just wondering what the ECHR report is going to say. It ought to bring some sanity to this long running farce but I suspect it’ll be more torture for Corbynites.

  33. I dont know what my breaking point is or if i have one maybe I’m just a stubborn masochist. If Corbyn was suspended and could not stand at the next election I imagine the rest of my family would leave and i don’t think we could talk about politics anymore at home.

    I read an article yesterday calling anti semitism an inevitable problem with an influx of new members but I disagree. There were clearly members pre 2010; Ken, Corbyn, Williamson, Walker, Greenstein, etc. who have said things in the past which have hurt members of the Jewish community but social media has meant so many more of these things are so much more revealing. There isn’t an increase in incidents necessarily but significantly more have now seen the light of day.

    I suspect the report will say the party has failed dramatically to in its disciplinary process to the shock of nobody in particular. Though i must say despite all the talk of new management the party is still has crap disiplinary measures. Sure it seems that a few members are facing suspensions but so far there have been no expulsions. It’s early days but not holding my breath. The party maybe found criminally liable and is served notice.

    I don’t think the party will be found to be institutionally anti semitic. Though I must say ITVs drama the murder of Stephen Lawrence laid bare much of flaws that led to the Mcphereson Inquiry finding the London Met institutionally racist. There are parallels like the internal investigations.

  34. I don’t have a dog in this fight, but FWIW the Labour Party is stronger for having people like Matt in it. For a start, he actually gets off his backside to canvas etc, unlike the rest of us armchair pundits.

    If you’re worried about being expelled from the party in an ideological purge, well, I guess we must take the possibility seriously, because you have a habit of being right about things.

  35. Thanks PollTroll appreciate your kind words

  36. This is worth a read:

    Having read all this, that (a) the party’s internal polling had been in existential crisis territory in the autumn (losing Vauxhall to the Tories!) and (b) the Labour campaign team was filled with people who hated each other, there’s an argument that a Conservative majority was inevitable, and Labour actually did okay in the circumstances simply to guarantee the survival of the party. They also did pretty well to cover up all the behind-the-scenes dysfunctionality and present what looked like a professional election campaign.

    This is also, I think, a vindication for supporting a 2nd EU referendum. Had they not done so, it is possible that the party would have fallen between two constitutional stools, as it has already done in Scotland.

  37. I’m not going to read it but it sounds absurd (that he did things to sabotage his own campaign).

    But another ridiculous thing coming out of the Labour side of the GE. Very soon someone will write a play or tv series (probably a comedy) on this and most of us will have a bloody good laugh.

    I guess a lot of this might be covered in Corbyn’s autobiography/account of his leadership, which presumably will come in the next year or so, which I for one, can’t wait for!

  38. I don’t think anyone’s saying he *deliberately* sabotaged his own campaign. What comes through again and again is that he (a) didn’t have a good strategic mind, and (b) was too stubborn to listen to those who did (especially John McDonnell).

  39. I am surprised we haven’t seen a biopic yet there have been so many biographies.

  40. If there was a biopic- and btw I doubt very much that it would be kind to him – who would play him?

    The immediate answer one comes to is ..Martin Sheen!

    But I’d suggest Bill Nighy or Robert Powell.

  41. Larry lamb should play mcdonnell

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