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election2001
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Readers Poll Con 52% Lab 28% LD 18% Nat 2% Enter your vote to win 1M

Beckenham
Conservative hold

Constituency Profile by Robert Waller
Beckenham, the north west wedge of the middle-class and Conservative south east London Borough of Bromley, witnessed the second by-election of the 1997 Parliament on 20 November of that year, after Piers Merchant, returned by 5,000 votes in May, was forced to resign after allegations of scandalous practice were found to be justified. Jacqui Lait scraped in with a majority of slightly more than 1,000 over Labour, and although the former Hastings MP must hope for clearer water ahead, with the very favourable polls for Labour as the campaign has opened, it should be borne in mind that Beckenham now counts as one of Labour's top four target seats in the capital.

Personality Profile by Byron Criddle
Jacqui Lait, one of a number of ambitious Scots Tories who have of necessity to take the high road South to electable pastures, held Hastings for only one Parliament (1992-97) and then was returned for Beckenham in the 1997 by-election . Born 1947, and educated at Paisley Grammar School and Strathclyde University, despite her Europhilia, William Hague, whose PPS she had been, made her a Whip in 1999 and a Social Security spokesman in 2000. A former lobbyist who was the first female Tory Whip in the Major government, her election for Beckenham upped the number of Conservative women MPs to 14. A campaigner for separate married women's taxation and against alcohol and tobacco smuggling, she has latterly trimmed to scepticism on a common currency. Labour's Richard Wattis, born 1966 and educated at Ramsden School for Boys, Orpington, and Leicester University, is a publishing director with Michael Heseltine's Haymarket Publishing.
ACORN Population Profile of the constituency
  Area
Percent
GB
Percent
Index
GB=100
 
Thriving
Wealthy Achievers, Suburban Areas 21.98% 14.99% 146.57
Affluent Greys, Rural Communities 0.00% 2.13% 0.00
Prosperous Pensioners, Retirement Areas 3.04% 2.49% 122.31
Expanding
Affluent Executives, Family Areas 0.00% 4.43% 0.00
Well-Off Workers, Family Areas 0.97% 7.27% 13.31
Rising
Affluent Urbanites, Town & City Areas 6.32% 2.56% 246.32
Prosperous Professionals, Metropolitan Areas 22.53% 2.04% 1,104.00
Better-Off Executives, Inner City Areas 7.97% 3.94% 202.04
Settling
Comfortable Middle Agers, Mature Home Owning Areas 7.71% 13.04% 59.10
Skilled Workers, Home Owning Areas 15.45% 12.70% 121.64
Aspiring
New Home Owners, Mature Communities 0.51% 8.14% 6.32
White Collar Workers, Better-Off Multi Ethnic Areas 6.53% 4.02% 162.32
Striving
Older People, Less Prosperous Areas 0.12% 3.19% 3.87
Council Estate Residents, Better-Off Homes 0.60% 11.31% 5.33
Council Estate Residents, High Unemployment 3.97% 3.06% 129.58
Council Estate Residents, Greatest Hardship 0.01% 2.52% 0.43
People in Multi-Ethnic, Low-Income Areas 2.29% 2.10% 109.07
Unclassified
Unclassified 0.00% 0.06% 0.00
Household Income of the constituency
  Area
Percent
GB
Percent
Index
GB=100
 
0-5K 4.81% 9.41% 51.06
5-10K 9.55% 16.63% 57.43
10-15K 11.60% 16.58% 69.94
15-20K 11.49% 13.58% 84.56
20-25K 10.37% 10.39% 99.75
25-30K 8.92% 7.77% 114.74
30-35K 7.48% 5.79% 129.12
35-40K 6.18% 4.33% 142.68
40-45K 5.07% 3.27% 155.34
45-50K 4.15% 2.48% 167.08
50-55K 3.39% 1.90% 177.93
55-60K 2.77% 1.47% 187.93
60-65K 2.27% 1.15% 197.14
65-70K 1.86% 0.91% 205.63
70-75K 1.54% 0.72% 213.46
75-80K 1.27% 0.57% 220.69
80-85K 1.05% 0.46% 227.36
85-90K 0.87% 0.37% 233.54
90-95K 0.73% 0.31% 239.27
95-100K 0.61% 0.25% 244.58
100K + 3.63% 1.34% 269.74

Local Map of the constituency
Beckenham - Local Map of the constituency

National Map of the constituency
Beckenham - National Map of the constituency

Swing
1992-1997 1997-2001
Labour (12.26%) Liberal Democrat (1.44%)
Conservative (- 17.73%)
Conservative (2.78%) Labour (1.01%)
Liberal Democrat (-  2.10%)
Con - 17.73%
Lab 12.26%
LD 1.44%
Con 2.78%
Lab 1.01%
LD - 2.10%
2001 Results - General Election (7 June 2001)
Jacqui Lait
Conservative hold
Con Conservative (45.25%) 20,618 45.25%
Lab Labour (34.37%) 15,659 34.37%
LD Liberal Democrat (16.04%) 7,308 16.04%
Oth Other (4.34%) 1,977 4.34%
Maj Majority (10.88%) 4,959 10.88%
Turn Turnout (63.07%) 45,562 63.07%
2001 Results - General Election (7 June 2001)
Jacqui Lait
Conservative hold
LD Alex Feakes 7,308 16.04%
C Jacqui Lait 20,618 45.25%
G Karen Moran 961 2.11%
UK Christopher Pratt 782 1.72%
L Richard Watts 15,659 34.37%
Lib Rif Winfield 234 0.51%
Candidates representing 6 parties stood for election to this seat.
Byelection Results
By Election (20 November 1997)
Appointment of Piers Rolf Garfield Merchant as Steward of the Manor of Northstead 21 October 1997
Jacqui Lait
Conservative
Con Conservative (41.25%) 13,162 41.25%
Lab Labour (37.40%) 11,935 37.40%
LD Liberal Democrat (18.38%) 5,864 18.38%
Oth Other (2.97%) 947 2.97%
Maj Majority (3.85%) 1,227 3.85%
Turn Turnout (43.11%) 31,908 43.11%
1997 Results - General Election (1 May 1997)
Piers Merchant
Conservative
Con Conservative (42.47%) 23,084 42.47%
Lab Labour (33.36%) 18,131 33.36%
LD Liberal Democrat (18.14%) 9,858 18.14%
Ref Referendum (3.06%) 1,663 3.06%
Oth Other (2.97%) 1,614 2.97%
Maj Majority (9.11%) 4,953 9.11%
Turn Turnout (74.65%) 54,350 74.65%
1992 Results -  General Election (9 April 1992)
Conservative
Con Conservative (60.20%) 35,154 60.20%
Lab Labour (21.10%) 12,341 21.10%
LD Liberal Democrat (16.70%) 9,765 16.70%
Oth Other (2.00%) 1,153 2.00%
Maj Majority (39.10%) 22,813 39.10%
Turn Turnout (77.48%) 58,413 77.48%

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