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East Somerset (UK Parliament constituency)

East Somerset was the name of a parliamentary constituency in Somerset, represented in the House of Commons of the Parliament of the United Kingdom between 1832 and 1918.

East Somerset
Former County constituency
for the House of Commons
CountySomerset
18851918
Number of membersOne
Replaced byWells and Yeovil
18321885
Number of membersTwo
Type of constituencyCounty constituency
Created fromSomerset

From 1832 to 1885, it returned two Members of Parliament (MPs), elected by the bloc vote system of election. From 1885 to 1918, a different constituency of the same name returned one MP, elected by the first past the post voting system.

BoundariesEdit

1885-1918: The Sessional Divisions of Somerton and Wincanton, and part of the Sessional Divisions of Shepton Mallet and Wells.

HistoryEdit

1832–1868Edit

The constituency, formally called The Eastern Division of Somerset, was created for the 1832 general election, when the former Somerset constituency was divided into new East and West divisions. It also absorbed the voters from the abolished borough of Milborne Port. The constituency might have been better described as North-Eastern Somerset, since its limits stopped well short of the southern extremities of the county. It surrounded the cities of Bath and Wells (although both were boroughs electing MPs in their own right, freeholders within these boroughs who met the property-owning qualifications for the county franchise could vote in East Somerset as well, as could those in Frome); other towns in the division were Glastonbury, Burnham-on-Sea, Clevedon, Keynsham, Midsomer Norton, Portishead, Radstock, Shepton Mallet, Somerton and Weston-super-Mare.

1868–1885Edit

The Second Reform Act brought about significant boundary changes, which came into effect at the 1868 general election, as Somerset was given a third county constituency. The southern end of East Somerset (including Glastonbury, Radstock, Shepton Mallet and Somerton as well as the area round Frome and Wells) was moved into the new Mid Somerset division. The revised East Somerset constituency was now defined as consisting of the Long Ashton, Axbridge, Keynsham, Temple Cloud and Weston Petty Sessional Divisions.

1885–1918Edit

At the 1885 general election, there were further radical boundary changes, Somerset's three two-member county divisions together with one abolished borough being reorganised into seven single-member county constituencies. One of these took the name of Eastern Somerset, but this included none of the voters from the 1867-85 East Somerset constituency, who were divided between the new Frome, Northern Somerset and Wells divisions.

The new Eastern division was carved out of the previous Mid Somerset division, with Shepton Mallet being its largest town; it also included Somerton, Street and Wincanton. This was a predominantly rural constituency, though with some industry in the towns (notably brewing and bootmaking), and a strong Nonconformist religious tradition. It would probably have been a safe Liberal seat, but when its sitting Liberal MP joined the Liberal Unionists when the party split in 1886, he had no difficulty holding his seat until he retired.

AbolitionEdit

The constituency was abolished for the 1918 general election, when Somerset's number of county members was reduced by one. It was mostly replaced by the revised Wells county constituency, but the town of Somerton was transferred to Yeovil.

Members of ParliamentEdit

Election resultsEdit

Decades:

Elections in the 1840sEdit

General election 1841: East Somerset [11][2]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative William Miles Unopposed
Whig William Gore-Langton Unopposed
Registered electors 9,759
Conservative hold
Whig hold

Gore-Langton's death caused a by-election.

By-election, 10 April 1847: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Whig William Pinney Unopposed
Whig hold
General election 1847: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative William Miles Unopposed
Whig William Pinney Unopposed
Registered electors 9,655
Conservative hold
Whig hold

Elections in the 1850sEdit

General election 1852: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative William Miles 4,643 38.9 N/A
Conservative William Knatchbull 4,309 36.1 N/A
Whig Arthur Elton[12] 2,984 25.0 N/A
Majority 1,325 11.1 N/A
Turnout 7,460 (est) 73.6 (est) N/A
Registered electors 10,140
Conservative hold
Conservative gain from Whig
General election 1857: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative William Knatchbull Unopposed
Conservative William Miles Unopposed
Registered electors 10,592
Conservative hold
Conservative hold
General election 1859: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative William Knatchbull Unopposed
Conservative William Miles Unopposed
Registered electors 10,644
Conservative hold
Conservative hold

Elections in the 1860sEdit

General election 1865: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Richard Paget Unopposed
Conservative Ralph Neville-Grenville Unopposed
Registered electors 11,867
Conservative hold
Conservative hold
General election 1868: East Somerset [11][13]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Ralph Shuttleworth Allen 3,887 29.7 N/A
Conservative Richard Bright 3,848 29.4 N/A
Liberal Arthur Hayter 2,704 20.6 N/A
Liberal William Pinney 2,656 20.3 N/A
Majority 1,144 8.7 N/A
Turnout 6,548 (est) 74.4 (est) N/A
Registered electors 8,795
Conservative hold
Conservative hold

Elections in the 1870sEdit

General election 1874: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Ralph Shuttleworth Allen Unopposed
Conservative Richard Bright Unopposed
Registered electors 8,435
Conservative hold
Conservative hold

Bright's death caused a by-election.

By-election, 20 Mar 1878: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Philip Miles Unopposed
Conservative hold

Allen resigned, causing a by-election.

By-election, 19 Mar 1879: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Francis Greville Unopposed
Conservative hold

Elections in the 1880sEdit

General election 1880: East Somerset [11]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Conservative Francis Greville Unopposed
Conservative Philip Miles Unopposed
Registered electors 8,360
Conservative hold
Conservative hold
 
Hobhouse
General election 1885: East Somerset [14][15][16]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Henry Hobhouse 4,732 59.1 N/A
Conservative Henry Hoare 3,280 40.9 N/A
Majority 1,452 18.2 N/A
Turnout 8,012 85.7 N/A
Registered electors 9,344
Liberal gain from Conservative
General election 1886: East Somerset [14][16]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist Henry Hobhouse Unopposed
Liberal Unionist gain from Liberal

Elections in the 1890sEdit

 
Morley
General election 1892: East Somerset [14][16]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist Henry Hobhouse 4,330 54.8 N/A
Liberal Charles Morley 3,575 45.2 N/A
Majority 755 9.6 N/A
Turnout 7,905 85.8 N/A
Registered electors 9,208
Liberal Unionist hold
General election 1895: East Somerset [14][17][16]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist Henry Hobhouse 4,408 56.9 +2.1
Liberal John Swinburne-Hanham 3,334 43.1 -2.1
Majority 1,074 13.8 +4.2
Turnout 7,742 83.5 −2.3
Registered electors 9,268
Liberal Unionist hold Swing +2.1

Elections in the 1900sEdit

General election 1900: East Somerset [14][17]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist Henry Hobhouse Unopposed
Liberal Unionist hold
General election 1906: East Somerset [18][14]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal John Thompson 4,553 53.9 N/A
Liberal Unionist Bertram Falle 3,890 46.1 N/A
Majority 663 7.8 N/A
Turnout 8,443 86.9 N/A
Registered electors 9,717
Liberal gain from Liberal Unionist

Elections in the 1910sEdit

General election January 1910: East Somerset [18][19]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist Ernest Jardine 4,997 55.7 9.6
Liberal John Thompson 3,970 44.3 -9.6
Majority 1,027 11.4
Turnout
Liberal Unionist gain from Liberal Swing +9.6
General election December 1910: East Somerset [18][19]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Liberal Unionist Ernest Jardine 4,748 55.1 -0.6
Liberal John Thompson 3,875 44.9 +0.6
Majority 873 10.2 -1.2
Turnout
Liberal Unionist hold Swing -0.6

General Election 1914/15:

Another General Election was required to take place before the end of 1915. The political parties had been making preparations for an election to take place and by July 1914, the following candidates had been selected;

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Jenkins, Terry. "Somerset: Background information". The History of Parliament. The History of Parliament Trust. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  2. ^ a b c d e Stooks Smith, Henry (1845). The Parliaments of England, from 1st George I., to the Present Time. Vol II: Oxfordshire to Wales Inclusive. London: Simpkin, Marshall, & Co. p. 25. Retrieved 27 May 2019 – via Google Books.
  3. ^ Mosse, Richard Bartholomew (1838). The Parliamentary Guide: a concise history of the Members of both Houses, etc. p. 186. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
  4. ^ "North Devon Journal". 27 December 1832. p. 3. Retrieved 27 May 2019 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Somerset Eastern 1832-1918". Hansard. Retrieved 5 October 2012.
  6. ^ "Election Talk". The Spectator. 13 December 1834. p. 6. Retrieved 19 May 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  7. ^ "The General Election". Sherborne Mercury. 27 July 1852. p. 3. Retrieved 19 May 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  8. ^ "To the Editor of the Sherborne and Yeovil Mercury". Sherborne Mercury. 28 August 1847. p. 3. Retrieved 19 May 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  9. ^ Elvins, Brian. "Somerset County M.P.s 1832–1885—A Profile" (PDF). Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. p. 152. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  10. ^ "The Provinces". The Spectator. 3 April 1847. p. 6. Retrieved 19 May 2018.
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Craig, F. W. S., ed. (1977). British Parliamentary Election Results 1832-1885 (e-book) (1st ed.). London: Macmillan Press. pp. 450–451. ISBN 978-1-349-02349-3.
  12. ^ "To the Electors of the Eastern Division of Somerset". Bristol Times and Mirror. 24 July 1852. p. 4. Retrieved 13 August 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  13. ^ "East Somerset Election". Frome Times. 2 December 1868. p. 2. Retrieved 17 March 2018 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  14. ^ a b c d e f The Liberal Year Book, 1907
  15. ^ Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1886
  16. ^ a b c d Craig, FWS, ed. (1974). British Parliamentary Election Results: 1885-1918. London: Macmillan Press. ISBN 9781349022984.
  17. ^ a b Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1901
  18. ^ a b c British Parliamentary Election Results 1885-1918, FWS Craig
  19. ^ a b Debrett's House of Commons & Judicial Bench, 1916
  • The Constitutional Year Book for 1913 (London: National Union of Conservative and Unionist Associations, 1913)
  • F W S Craig, British Parliamentary Election Results 1832-1885 (2nd edition, Aldershot: Parliamentary Research Services, 1989)
  • Michael Kinnear, The British Voter (London: BH Batsford, Ltd, 1968)
  • Henry Pelling, Social Geography of British Elections 1885-1910 (London: Macmillan, 1967)
  • Frederic A Youngs, jr, Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, Vol I (London: Royal Historical Society, 1979)