The seat had become vacant when the Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) James Guy had resigned from the House of Commons due to ill-health on 24 November 1941, by the procedural device of accepting the post of Steward of the Manor of Northstead. Guy had held the seat since the 1931 general election.
The parties in the war-time Coalition Government had agreed not to contest vacancies in seats held by other coalition parties, but other by-elections had been contested by independent candidates or those from minor parties. In this case, the Independent Labour Party (ILP) fielded a candidate, Thomas Taylor, who had previously contested the Glasgow Govan seat at the 1935 general election.
The result was a clear victory for Watt, who won comfortably, albeit on a much reduced turnout. He held the seat until his defeat at the 1945 general election by the Labour Party candidate Andrew Gilzean.
|Ind. Labour Party||T. Taylor||1,950||29.0||New|
- Craig, F. W. S. (1983) . British parliamentary election results 1918–1949 (3rd ed.). Chichester: Parliamentary Research Services. ISBN 0-900178-06-X.
- Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs