for the House of Commons
|Electorate||78,433 (December 2010)|
|Member of Parliament||Jon Ashworth (Labour Co-op)|
|Number of members||One|
|Created from||Leicester South East and Leicester South West|
|Number of members||One|
|Type of constituency||Borough constituency|
|Replaced by||Leicester South East, Leicester South West and Leicester North East|
Leicester South is a constituency[n 1], recreated in 1974, represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2011 by Jon Ashworth of the Labour Co-op Party (which denotes he is a member of the Labour Party and Co-operative Party, one of 38 such current Labour MPs, and requires members to contribute practically to a cooperative business).[n 2] A previous version of the seat existed between 1918 and 1950. Except for a 2004 by-election when it was won by the Liberal Democrats, Leicester South has been held by the Labour Party since 1987.
When originally created in 1918, the South division of the Parliamentary Borough of Leicester was defined as including the municipal wards of Aylestone, Castle, Charnwood, De Montfort, Knighton, Martin's, and Wycliffe.
The initial report of the Boundary Commission for England dated October 1947 and published in December 1947 recommended that Leicester retain three seats, including a revised Leicester South constituency consisting of the wards of Aylestone, De Montfort, Knighton, North Braunstone and Spinney Hill, giving an electorate of 67,574 as of the review date of 15 October 1946. When the Representation of the People Bill enacting the Commission's recommendations was debated in the House of Commons, the Government brought forward amendments at Committee stage on 24 March 1948 to allow 17 more constituencies in England. Home Secretary James Chuter Ede announced that the Boundary Commission would be invited to consider an additional constituency to each of nine cities, including Leicester. The Government issued a White Paper proposing the new boundaries which created new borough constituencies of Leicester South East and Leicester South West in place of Leicester South. The Boundary Commission recommended no alteration to the proposals, and the revised constituencies were therefore enacted.
In 1969, the Second Periodical Report of the Parliamentary Boundary Commission for England reduced Leicester from four seats to three, and recreated Leicester South as a borough constituency consisting of the Aylestone, Castle, De Montfort, Knighton, Spinney Hill and Wycliffe wards of Leicester.
Minor boundary changes were made as a result of the Third Periodical Report of the Boundary Commission in 1983. Ward boundaries having changed, the constituency was defined as including the Aylestone, Castle, Crown Hills, East Knighton, Eyres Monsell, Saffron, Spinney Hill, Stoneygate, West Knighton and Wycliffe wards. The new constituency took in about 3,000 voters who were previously in other Leicester seats. No changes were made in the Fourth Periodical Report of the Boundary Commission in 1995, and in the Fifth Periodical Report of the Boundary Commission in 2007, the constituency had only minor changes with 73 voters being added from Leicester West.
Presently the seat is centred on the southern part of Leicester, and covers leafy suburbs such as Stoneygate and Knighton, inner-city areas with a strong Asian community, and deprived outer estates such as Saffron and Eyres Monsell. The constituency encompasses the council wards of Spinney Hills, Stoneygate, Knighton, Freemen, Aylestone, Eyres Monsell and virtually all of Castle. Another demographic feature is the presence of a large number of students studying at the University of Leicester and De Montfort University, which are both situated in the constituency.
Leicester South is a varied constituency. It contains some of the most pleasant and affluent areas of Leicester such as Stoneygate, Knighton and Aylestone, as well as more deprived areas such as Saffron and Eyres Monsell. The centre of Leicester, also within the constituency, is more ethnically diverse than the southern part of the area. The seat also contains HM Prison Leicester and both of Leicester's universities.
The seat was held by Derek Spencer for the Conservative Party between the general elections of 1983 and 1987. Its electorate demonstrated increased Labour support thereafter in local and national elections. A 2004 by-election caused by the death of Labour MP Jim Marshall was fought under the shadow of the Iraq War, and was won by Parmjit Singh Gill who became at the time the only Liberal Democrat MP from an ethnic minority. He held the seat for a year before being defeated by Labour candidate Sir Peter Soulsby at the 2005 general election. Soulsby subsequently resigned in order to seek election as Mayor of Leicester in 2011, giving Leicester South its second by-election in the space of seven years; this time the seat was safely held by Labour.
The expansion of the city's suburbs and commuter belt has altered the incomes and other demographic measures of the constituency. The seat saw close contests between Conservative and Labour candidates in the 1980s, with Jim Marshall losing the seat by 7 votes to the Conservatives in the 1983 general election, but regaining it in 1987.
Marshall died in 2004, and the resulting by-election was fiercely contested. As in a by-election in Birmingham Hodge Hill held on the same day, the Liberal Democrat candidates hoped—despite having additional competition for the anti-Iraq War vote from Respect—to build on their previous by-election gain at Brent East. The seat was won by the Liberal Democrat Parmjit Singh Gill, with a majority of 1,654.
Sir Peter Soulsby won the seat at the 2005 election, and was re-elected in 2010. Sir Peter resigned to seek election for the new position of Mayor of Leicester in 2011, triggering a by-election on 5 May 2011, that coincided with the referendum on the voting system. Jon Ashworth was elected as his successor, holding the seat for the Labour Party; he was re-elected in 2015 and 2017.
Despite being the only seat in Leicester that has been served by all three major parties in the past 35 years, Leicester South is also currently the safest of the three Labour seats in the city, with a majority in 2017 of 26,261 votes (52.0%), which, as in neighbouring Leicester East, is also the highest-ever majority for Labour in the seat.
Members of Parliament
|1922||William George Waterhouse Reynolds||Conservative|
|1923||Ronald Wilberforce Allen||Liberal|
MPs since 1974
Elections in the 2010s
|Labour Co-op||Jon Ashworth||33,606||67.0||-6.6|
|Liberal Democrats||Chris Coghlan||2,754||5.5||+3.0|
|Brexit Party||James Potter||1,187||2.4||New|
|Labour Co-op||Jon Ashworth||37,157||73.6||+13.8|
|Liberal Democrats||Harrish Bishnauthsing||1,287||2.5||-2.1|
|Labour Co-op||Jon Ashworth||27,493||59.8||+14.2|
|Liberal Democrats||Anita Prabhakar||2,127||4.6||-22.3|
|Liberal Democrats||Zuffar Haq||7,693||22.5||-4.4|
|Monster Raving Loony||Howling Laud Hope||553||1.6||New|
|Liberal Democrats||Parmjit Singh Gill||12,671||26.9||-3.7|
Elections in the 2000s
|Liberal Democrats||Parmjit Singh Gill||12,971||30.6||+13.4|
|Socialist Labour||Dave Roberts||315||0.7||-0.9|
|Liberal Democrats||Parmjit Singh Gill||10,274||34.9||+17.7|
|Socialist Labour||Dave Roberts||263||0.9||-0.7|
|Monster Raving Loony||R. U. Seerius||225||0.8||New|
|Ind. Conservative||Alan Barrett||25||0.1||New|
|Liberal Democrats gain from Labour||Swing||+21.5|
|Liberal Democrats||Parmjit Singh Gill||7,243||17.2||+3.4|
|Socialist Labour||Arnie Gardner||676||1.6||New|
Elections in the 1990s
|Liberal Democrats||Barry Coles||6,654||13.8||+2.1|
|Socialist Labour||Jim Dooher||634||1.3||New|
|National Democrats||Kevin Sills||307||0.6||New|
|Conservative||Michael K. Dutt||18,494||34.6||−6.2|
|Liberal Democrats||Anne Crumbie||6,271||11.7||−2.1|
|Natural Law||Patricia A. Saunders||154||0.3||New|
Elections in the 1980s
|Independent Labour||Mian Mayat||192||0.3||New|
|Workers Revolutionary||Robert Manners||96||0.2||New|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing||+1.7|
|Socialist Workers (Indian Workers' Association)||Dave Roberts||161||0.3||New|
|Conservative gain from Labour||Swing||+1.9|
The Conservatives' 7 vote majority made Leicester South their most marginal constituency after the 1983 election and was the closest result in any constituency in the United Kingdom in the election.
Elections in the 1970s
|National Front||A. R. Cartwright||940||1.8||-2.3|
|National Front||A. R. Cartwright||2,072||4.1||+1.1|
|Marxist-Leninist (England)||G. H. Rousseau||136||0.3||New|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing|
|National Front||John Kynaston||1,639||3.0|
|Conservative win (new seat)|
Elections in the 1940s
|Liberal||Thomas Allan Pratt||5,509||12.7||New|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing|
Elections in the 1930s
Elections in the 1920s
|Labour||Herbert Brough Usher||16,198||37.4||+7.7|
|Labour||Herbert Brough Usher||8,912||29.7||New|
|Liberal||Ronald Wilberforce Allen||6,079||20.3||−37.6|
|Unionist gain from Liberal||Swing||+22.8|
|Liberal||Ronald Wilberforce Allen||14,692||57.9||+8.1|
|Unionist||William George Waterhouse Reynolds||10,674||42.1||−8.1|
|Liberal gain from Unionist||Swing||+8.1|
|Unionist||William George Waterhouse Reynolds||12,534||50.2||−27.0|
|Liberal||Ronald Wilberforce Allen||12,425||49.8||New|
Elections in the 1910s
|Labour||Frederick Fox Riley||5,463||22.8|
|Unionist win (new seat)|
|C indicates candidate endorsed by the coalition government.|
Notes and references
- "Electorate Figures – Boundary Commission for England". 2011 Electorate Figures. Boundary Commission for England. 4 March 2011. Archived from the original on 6 November 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2011.
- "88. Parliamentary Borough of Leicester" in "Report of the Boundary Commission (England and Wales)", Cd. 8757, vol III.
- "Initial Report", Boundary Commission for England, Cmd. 7260, p. 30-1.
- "All-Night Debate on New Constituencies", The Times, 25 March 1948, p. 4.
- "Report of Boundary Commissioners for England on Representations relating to certain proposed new Constituencies", Cmd. 7400, p. 5.
- F. W. S. Craig, "Boundaries of Parliamentary Constituencies 1885–1972", Political Reference Publications, Chichester, 1972, p. 138.
- "The BBC/ITN Guide to the New Parliamentary Constituencies", Parliamentary Research Services, Chichester, 1983, p. 89.
- "Media Guide to the New Parliamentary Constituencies", BBC/ITN/PA News/Sky (Local Government Chronicle Elections Centre), 1995, p. 109.
- "Media Guide to the New Parliamentary Constituencies (Fifth Periodical Review)", BBC/ITN/PA News/Sky (Local Government Chronicle Elections Centre), 2007, p. 108.
- "UK Polling Report". ukpollingreport.co.uk.
- "Vote 2011: Details of elections taking place across UK". BBC News. 13 April 2011.
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "L" (part 2)
- "Leicester South Parliamentary constituency". BBC News. BBC. Retrieved 22 November 2019.
- "Parliamentary election". www.leicester.gov.uk.
- "Election Data 2015". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 17 October 2015. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- "Election Data 2010". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- "Election Data 2005". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
- Boothroyd, David. "Results of Byelections in the 2001-2005 Parliament". United Kingdom Election Results. Retrieved 5 October 2015.
- "Election Data 2001". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
- "Election Data 1997". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
- "Leicester South", Guardian Online
- "Election Data 1992". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
- "Politics Resources". Election 1992. Politics Resources. 9 April 1992. Archived from the original on 24 July 2011. Retrieved 6 December 2010.
- "Election Data 1987". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
- "Politico's Guide to the History of British Political Parties". Politico's. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
- "Election Data 1983". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
- "UK General Election results: June 1983 [Archive]". www.politicsresources.net. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 7 March 2011.
- The Times Guide to the House of Commons June 1983. London: Times Books Ltd. 1983. p. 282. ISBN 0-7230-0255-X.
- "UK General Election results: May 1979 [Archive]". www.politicsresources.net.
- "UK General Election results: October 1974 [Archive]". www.politicsresources.net.
- "UK General Election results: February 1974 [Archive]". www.politicsresources.net.
- "UK General Election results: July 1945 [Archive]". www.politicsresources.net. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 7 March 2011.
- The Constitutional Year Book (1937), p.210
- The Constitutional Year Book (1933), p.198
- The Constitutional Year Book (1930), p.234