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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

Wells
Conservative hold

Constituency Profile by Robert Waller
There was a rather odd result in the Somerset seat of Wells in 1997. With Conservatives going down all over the country like ninepins, and the long-established Liberal strength in the West Country and particularly in the county of Somerset, Wells might surely have been expected to join Somerton/Frome and Taunton as a Lib Dem gain; yet David Heathcoat-Amory held on, as the LD share of the vote scarcely rose. Rather it was Labour's which jumped forward, anti-tactically as it were. This may have had much to do with the candidature in the Labour interest of Michael Eavis, the organiser of the huge music festival near Glastonbury. Eavis is not standing this time, but the Liberal Democrat performance in Mendip and Sedgemoor district council elections in May 1999 does not indicate that they have the depth of local support to win Wells from Heathcoat-Amory in a 2001 General Election either.

Personality Profile by Byron Criddle
David Heathcoat-Amory resigned in 1996 as Paymaster General in the Major government to oppose the single currency but was reinstated to the front bench under Hague and is currently Shadow Trade Secretary. A diffident, somewhat uncharismatic accountant, farmer and sometime Lloyds underwriter, he was born into a rich West country family (which included his great uncle, Derick Heathcoat-Amory, Chancellor of the Exchequer under Macmillan) and was educated at Eton and Balliol College Oxford. With his Thatcherite convictions reflected in his initial hesitation between Howard and Redwood in 1997, he had nonetheless earlier expressed doubts on the poll tax. He led the hunting-down of Labour's Paymaster General, Geoffrey Robinson in 1997-98. Liberal Democrat hopes here rest with the male nurse Graham Oakes, born 1959 and brought up in Yeovil. With ten years experience on Somerset County Council, he currently manages an old peoples' home.
ACORN Population Profile of the constituency
  Area
Percent
GB
Percent
Index
GB=100
 
Thriving
Wealthy Achievers, Suburban Areas 30.27% 14.99% 201.91
Affluent Greys, Rural Communities 4.14% 2.13% 194.51
Prosperous Pensioners, Retirement Areas 4.42% 2.49% 177.62
Expanding
Affluent Executives, Family Areas 2.10% 4.43% 47.42
Well-Off Workers, Family Areas 4.40% 7.27% 60.43
Rising
Affluent Urbanites, Town & City Areas 0.04% 2.56% 1.57
Prosperous Professionals, Metropolitan Areas 0.00% 2.04% 0.00
Better-Off Executives, Inner City Areas 0.56% 3.94% 14.29
Settling
Comfortable Middle Agers, Mature Home Owning Areas 19.19% 13.04% 147.15
Skilled Workers, Home Owning Areas 14.99% 12.70% 118.02
Aspiring
New Home Owners, Mature Communities 10.11% 8.14% 124.15
White Collar Workers, Better-Off Multi Ethnic Areas 3.15% 4.02% 78.43
Striving
Older People, Less Prosperous Areas 3.75% 3.19% 117.84
Council Estate Residents, Better-Off Homes 2.79% 11.31% 24.66
Council Estate Residents, High Unemployment 0.00% 3.06% 0.00
Council Estate Residents, Greatest Hardship 0.00% 2.52% 0.00
People in Multi-Ethnic, Low-Income Areas 0.00% 2.10% 0.00
Unclassified
Unclassified 0.09% 0.06% 148.71
Household Income of the constituency
  Area
Percent
GB
Percent
Index
GB=100
 
0-5K 9.58% 9.41% 101.80
5-10K 17.39% 16.63% 104.57
10-15K 17.39% 16.58% 104.87
15-20K 14.07% 13.58% 103.61
20-25K 10.56% 10.39% 101.57
25-30K 7.72% 7.77% 99.25
30-35K 5.61% 5.79% 96.90
35-40K 4.10% 4.33% 94.66
40-45K 3.02% 3.27% 92.59
45-50K 2.25% 2.48% 90.70
50-55K 1.69% 1.90% 89.00
55-60K 1.29% 1.47% 87.47
60-65K 0.99% 1.15% 86.11
65-70K 0.77% 0.91% 84.90
70-75K 0.60% 0.72% 83.82
75-80K 0.48% 0.57% 82.86
80-85K 0.38% 0.46% 82.00
85-90K 0.30% 0.37% 81.23
90-95K 0.25% 0.31% 80.55
95-100K 0.20% 0.25% 79.94
100K + 1.04% 1.34% 77.74

Local Map of the constituency
Wells - Local Map of the constituency

National Map of the constituency
Wells - National Map of the constituency

Swing
1992-1997 1997-2001
Labour (7.50%) Liberal Democrat (0.45%)
Conservative (- 10.21%)
Conservative (4.38%)
Labour (-  2.67%) Liberal Democrat (-  0.13%)
Con - 10.21%
Lab 7.50%
LD 0.45%
Con 4.38%
Lab - 2.67%
LD - 0.13%
2001 Results - General Election (7 June 2001)
David Heathcoat-Amory
Conservative hold
Con Conservative (43.77%) 22,462 43.77%
Lab Labour (15.42%) 7,915 15.42%
LD Liberal Democrat (38.32%) 19,666 38.32%
Oth Other (2.48%) 1,271 2.48%
Maj Majority (5.45%) 2,796 5.45%
Turn Turnout (69.17%) 51,314 69.17%
2001 Results - General Election (7 June 2001)
David Heathcoat-Amory
Conservative hold
WR Colin Bex 167 0.33%
C David Heathcoat-Amory 22,462 43.77%
L Andy Merryfield 7,915 15.42%
LD Graham Oakes 19,666 38.32%
UK Steve Reed 1,104 2.15%
Candidates representing 5 parties stood for election to this seat.
1997 Results - General Election (1 May 1997)
David Heathcote-Amory
Conservative
Con Conservative (39.39%) 22,208 39.39%
Lab Labour (18.10%) 10,204 18.10%
LD Liberal Democrat (38.45%) 21,680 38.45%
Ref Referendum (3.89%) 2,196 3.89%
Oth Other (0.16%) 92 0.16%
Maj Majority (0.94%) 528 0.94%
Turn Turnout (78.11%) 56,380 78.11%
1992 Results -  General Election (9 April 1992)
Conservative
Con Conservative (49.60%) 28,620 49.60%
Lab Labour (10.60%) 6,126 10.60%
LD Liberal Democrat (38.00%) 21,971 38.00%
Oth Other (1.80%) 1,042 1.80%
Maj Majority (11.50%) 6,649 11.50%
Turn Turnout (82.39%) 57,759 82.39%

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