Rayleigh (UK Parliament constituency)

Former County constituency
for the House of Commons

Outline map

Boundary of Rayleigh in Essex for the 2005 general election.

Outline map

Location of Essex within England.
County Essex
Number of members One
Replaced by Rayleigh and Wickford
Created from Rochford

Rayleigh was a parliamentary constituency in Essex represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom. It elected one Member of Parliament (MP) by the first past the post system of election. It existed from 1997 to 2010.


This largely rural constituency was the tenth safest Conservative seat in the United Kingdom and the second safest seat in Essex.


The District of Rochford wards of Ashingdon, Canewdon, Downhall, Grange and Rawreth, Hawkwell East, Hawkwell West, Hockley Central, Hockley East, Hockley West, Hullbridge Riverside, Hullbridge South, Lodge, Rayleigh Central, Trinity, Wheatley, and Whitehouse, and the Borough of Chelmsford wards of East and West Hanningfield, Rettendon and Runwell, South Hanningfield, South Woodham-Collingwood East, and West and South Woodham-Elmwood and Woodville.

Following their review of parliamentary representation in Essex, the Boundary Commission for England has made radical alterations to existing constituencies to allow for the number of parliamentary seats in the county to be increased to eighteen. These changes include the formation of a number of new constituencies in the southern and eastern parts of the county.

Rayleigh has been modified to form a new constituency of Rayleigh and Wickford which was first contested in 2010.

Members of Parliament

1997 Michael Clark Conservative
2001 Mark Francois Conservative
2010 Constituency abolished: see Rayleigh and Wickford


Elections in the 2000s

General Election 2005: Rayleigh
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Mark Francois 25,609 55.4 +5.3
Labour Julian Ware-Lane 10,883 23.6 -7.1
Liberal Democrat Sid Cumberland 7,406 16.0 +0.5
UKIP Janet Davies 2,295 5.0 +1.3
Majority 14,726 31.9 +12.5
Turnout 46,193 64.2 +3.7
Conservative hold Swing 6.2
General Election 2001: Rayleigh
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Mark Francois 21,434 50.1 +0.4
Labour Paul Clark 13,144 30.7 +1.8
Liberal Democrat Geoff Williams 6,614 15.5 4.3
UKIP Colin Morgan 1,581 3.7
Majority 8,290 19.4 1.4
Turnout 42,773 60.5 13.8
Conservative hold Swing 1.4

Elections in the 1990s

The 1997 election result has swings relative to the notional, not the actual, 1992 result.

General Election 1997: Rayleigh[2]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Michael Clark 25,516 49.7 11.4
Labour Raymond Ellis 14,832 28.9 +14.1
Liberal Democrat Sid Cumberland 10,137 19.8 2.1
Liberal Alan Farmer 829 1.6
Majority 10,684 20.8 18.4
Turnout 51,314 74.3
Conservative hold Swing -12.70

See also

Notes and references

  1. Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs – Constituencies beginning with "R" (part 1)
  2. C. Rallings & M. Thrasher, The Media Guide to the New Parliamentary Constituencies, p.136 (Plymouth: LGC Elections Centre, 1995)

Coordinates: 51°35′N 0°40′E / 51.59°N 0.66°E / 51.59; 0.66

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