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Parliamentary constituencies in Hertfordshire

Parliamentary constituencies in HertfordshireDescription : The county of Hertfordshire in England is divided into eleven Parliamentary constituencies. Each of the eleven elects a Member of Parliament (MP) to represent it at the United Kingdom (UK) Parliament in Westminster. As of the 2010 general election, all of Hertfordshire's eleven MPs are Conservatives. The county currently has two urban borough constituencies (BC) – Broxbourne and Watford – while the other nine are classed as more rural county constituencies (CC).Hertfordshire has been represen... Page:p167

A small county slightly to the south and east of the centre of the country, and completely bounded by other counties.
The county of Hertfordshire in relation to England

The county of Hertfordshire in England is divided into eleven Parliamentary constituencies. Each of the eleven elects a Member of Parliament (MP) to represent it at the United Kingdom (UK) Parliament in Westminster. As of the 2010 general election, all of Hertfordshire's eleven MPs are Conservatives. The county currently has two urban borough constituencies (BC) – Broxbourne and Watford – while the other nine are classed as more rural county constituencies (CC).

Hertfordshire has been represented in Parliament since 1290. The number of MPs and the geographic areas they have represented have changed considerably, with some of the bigger changes occurring in 1832, 1885, 1974, 1983 and 1997. Since the last constituency elections in 2005, some boundaries have been altered slightly. The present ones are based upon recommendations made by the Boundary Commission for England, and came into legal effect with the passing of the Parliamentary Constituencies (England) Order 2007.

Parliamentary history of Hertfordshire

Further information: History of Hertfordshire, Parliament of England, and Parliament of the United Kingdom
The head and shoulders of a middle-aged man, wearing a brown jacket, white shirt and black bow-tie.
Arthur Balfour was MP for Hertford between 1874 and 1885, and later Prime Minister.

Hertfordshire was first represented in the English parliament in the thirteenth century, during the reign of King Edward I. Edward held a meeting of Parliament in the county in 1295. By 1307, the county's representation in parliament consisted of two representatives, known as Knights of the Shire, who represented the county as a whole. In addition, the city of St Albans and borough of Hertford elected two representatives of their own. Parliament's role evolved over the next five centuries, from a body existing primarily to advise the monarch on taxation, into a legislative body in its own right following the English Civil War. However, Hertfordshire's constituency makeup within it remained unchanged until 1852, when the constituency of St Albans was abolished. The next change came in the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885. The constituency of Hertfordshire itself was abolished, with the county represented by the constituencies of Hertford, the re-established St Albans, and the newly formed Watford and Hitchin.

Following the Redistribution of Seats Act in 1885, Hertfordshire's Parliamentary boundaries remained the same until 1950. However, the demographics of voters in the county changed significantly, with four new towns being designated in the county in the three years from 1946–48. Meanwhile the eligibility to vote was extended from men who held property of a high enough value, to universal suffrage for all adults over the age of 21, as a result of the Representation of the People Acts in 1918 and 1928. In 1950 South West Hertfordshire was formed from part of the old Watford constituency, and for the following general election in 1955 East Hertfordshire was created from parts of Hitchin and Hertford. The next national boundary change affecting Hertfordshire came into effect for the February 1974 election. Four new constituencies were introduced, however three of these were replaced at the next national boundary change in 1983, as were Hitchin and East Hertfordshire. The 1983 boundary review saw the formation of Broxbourne, Hertford and Stortford, Hertsmere, Hitchin and Harpenden, Stevenage and North Hertfordshire, although the latter was replaced by North East Hertfordshire in 1997. The Boundary Commission for England decided not to change Hertfordshire's representation in Parliament for the 2010 election, although small boundary changes were made affecting eight of the county's eleven existing constituencies.


See also: List of former United Kingdom Parliamentary constituencies
  Former constituency
  * Constituency for the United Kingdom general election, 2010
Hertford 1298–1974 
St Albans 1307–1852 1885–*
Watford 1885–*
Hitchin 1885–1983 
Hemel Hempstead 1918–1983 1997–*
South West Hertfordshire 1950–*
East Hertfordshire 1955–1983 
Hertford and Stevenage 1974–1983 
South Hertfordshire 1974–1983 
Welwyn Hatfield 1974–*
North Hertfordshire 1983–1997 
West Hertfordshire 1983–1997 
Broxbourne 1983–*
Hertford and Stortford 1983–*
Hertsmere 1983–*
Hitchin and Harpenden 1997–*
Stevenage 1983–*
North East Hertfordshire 1997–*

Constituencies represented by multiple MPs

The head and shoulders of a middle-aged man, wearing a brown jacket and a black top.
William Lamb, MP for Hertfordshire 1819–1826 and Prime Minister of the UK 1835–1841

Following the 1832 Reform Act and the 1885 Representation of the People Act, it has become common for constituencies to be represented by a single MP. Prior to these acts Parliament consisted of fewer constituencies, with some represented by multiple MPs. Those which were represented by multiple Members of Parliament are listed below, with the increase or reduction in representation being implemented at general elections held in those years.

NameYear of formationYear abolishedNumber of MPs
St Albans130718522

Present Constituencies

Further information: United Kingdom general election, 2015

Hertfordshire's Parliamentary boundaries were amended by the Boundary Commission for England's fourth report for the 1997 general election, and these boundaries were retained for the 2001 and 2005 elections. Each constituency is made up of a series of whole or partial local government wards, which elect individual councillors at English local elections. Nine constituencies are designated as county constituencies, while two are considered borough constituencies. County constituencies are generally larger and more rural, and therefore county constituency Parliamentary candidates are allowed to spend more per head than their borough counterparts.

At the 2010 general election, the Conservative Party gained two seats from Labour. By holding their existing nine seats, they therefore returned an MP in every Hertfordshire constituency. The seat with the smallest majority was Watford, where Richard Harrington defeated Sal Brinton of the Liberal Democrats by 1,425 votes. The safest seat was Hertsmere, where James Clappison received 17,605 votes more than his nearest rival.

At the 2015 General Election, the Conservative Party held on to all 11 seats in Hertfordshire, with the Labour Party coming second in all constituencies with the exception of Broxbourne, where UKIP came second. The constituency with the smallest majority was Stevenage, where Stephen McPartland won by 4,955 votes. The constituency with the largest majority was South West Hertfordshire, which David Gauke won with a majority of 23,263.

  † Conservative   ‡ Labour   ¤ Liberal Democrat   ‡ UKIP

NameElectorateMajorityMember of ParliamentNearest oppositionElectoral wardsMap
Broxbourne BC72,94416,723 Charles Walker† David PlattBroxbourne Borough Council: Broxbourne, Bury Green, Cheshunt Central, Cheshunt North, Flamstead End, Goffs Oak, Hoddesdon North, Hoddesdon Town, Rosedale, Rye Park, Theobalds, Waltham Cross, Wormley & Turnford.
Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council: Northaw.
A fairly small constituency in the southeast part of the county.
Hemel Hempstead CC74,69414,203Michael Penning†Tony BreslinDacorum Borough Council: Adleyfield East, Adleyfield West, Apsley, Ashridge, Bennetts End, Boxmoor, Chaulden and Shrubhill, Corner Hall, Gadebridge, Grove Hill, Hemel Hempstead Central, Highfield and St Pauls, Kings Langley, Leverstock Green, Nash Mills, Warners End, Watling, Woodhall.
A medium-sized constituency. It is slightly to the northwest of the centre of the county.
Hertford and Stortford CC80,03221,509Mark Prisk†Katherine ChibahEast Hertfordshire District Council: Bishop’s Stortford All Saints, Bishop’s Stortford Central, Bishop’s Stortford Meads, Bishop’s Stortford Silverleys, Bishop’s Stortford South, Great Amwell, Hertford Bengeo, Hertford Castle, Hertford Heath, Hertford Kingsmead, Hertford Rural South, Hertford Sele, Hunsdon, Much Hadham, Sawbridgeworth, Stanstead Abbots, Ware Chadwell, Ware Christchurch, Ware St Mary’s, Ware Trinity.
A medium-sized constituency located in the east of the county.
Hertsmere CC72,52818,461Oliver Dowden†Richard ButlerHertsmere Borough Council: Aldenham East, Aldenham West, Borehamwood Brookmeadow, Borehamwood Cowley Hill, Borehamwood Hillside, Borehamwood Kenilworth, Bushey Heath, Bushey North, Bushey Park, Bushey St James, Elstree, Potters Bar Furzefield, Potters Bar, Oakmere, Potters Bar Parkfield, Shenley.
A small-to-medium sized constituency, located in the south of the county.
Hitchin and Harpenden CC80,33320,055Peter Lilley†Rachel BurginNorth Hertfordshire District Council: Cadwell Graveley & Wymondley, Hitchin Bearton, Hitchin Highbury, Hitchin Oughton, Hitchin Priory, Hitchin Walsworth, Hitchwood, Hoo, Kimpton, Offa.
St Albans City Council: Harpenden East, Harpenden North, Harpenden South, Harpenden West, Redbourn, Sandridge, Wheathampstead.
A fairly large constituency, stretching from the centre of the county northwards.
North East Hertfordshire CC74,00019,080Oliver Heald†Andy Harrop¤East Hertfordshire District Council: Braughing, Buntingford, Hertford Rural North, Little Hadham, Mundens and Cottered, Puckeridge, Thundridge & Standon, Walkern, Watton-at-Stone.
North Hertfordshire District Council: Arbury, Baldock East, Baldock Town, Ermine, Letchworth East, Letchworth Grange, Letchworth South East, Letchworth South West, Letchworth Wilbury, Royston Heath, Royston Meridian, Royston Palace, Weston and Sandon.
The largest constituency in the county, primarily located in the northeast of the county. Its northernmost parts are considerably further north than constituencies in the west.
South West Hertfordshire CC79,66823,263David Gauke†Simon DigginsDacorum Borough Council: Aldbury and Wigginton, Berkhamsted Castle, Berkhamsted East, Berkhamsted West, Bovingdon Flaunden & Chipperfield, Northchurch, Tring Central, Tring East, Tring West.
Three Rivers District Council: Ashridge, Chorleywood East, Chorleywood West, Croxley Green, Croxley Green North, Croxley Green South, Hayling, Maple Cross & Mill End, Moor Park & Eastbury, Northwick, Penn, Rickmansworth, Rickmansworth West, Sarratt.
A medium sized constituency. It is long and thin in shape, stretching from the northwest to the southwest of the county.
St Albans CC75,82512,732Anne Main†Kerry PollardSt Albans City Council: Ashley, Batchwood, Clarence, Colney Heath, Cunningham, London Colney, Marshalswick North, Marshalswick South, Park Street, St Peters, St Stephen, Sopwell, Verulam.
Three Rivers District Council: Bedmond & Primrose Hill.
A small-to-medium sized constituency, slightly west of the centre of the county. It is bordered entirely by other constituencies in the county.
Stevenage CC70,8344,955Stephen McPartland†Sharon Taylor‡East Hertfordshire District Council: Datchworth & Aston.
North Hertfordshire District Council: Codicote, Knebworth.
Stevenage Borough Council: Bandley Hill, Bedwell, Chells, Longmeadow, Manor, Martins Wood, Old Town, Pin Green, Roebuck, St Nicholas, Shephall, Symonds Green, Woodfield.
A small constituency located slightly north of the centre of the county. It is bordered exclusively by other constituencies in the county.
Watford BC85,5359,794Richard Harrington†Matthew TurmaineThree Rivers District Council: Abbots Langley, Carpenders Park, Langleybury, Leavesden, Oxhey Hall.
Watford Borough Council: Callowland, Central, Holywell, Leggatts, Meriden, Nascot, Oxhey, Park, Stanborough, Tudor, Vicarage, Woodside.
A small constituency, southwest of the centre of the county.
Welwyn Hatfield CC73,26412,153Grant Shapps†Anawar MiahWelwyn Hatfield Borough Council: Brookmans Park and Little Heath, Haldens, Handside, Hatfield Central, Hatfield East, Hatfield North, Hatfield South, Hatfield West, Hollybush, Howlands, Panshanger, Peartree, Sherrards, Welham Green, Welwyn North, Welwyn South.
A medium sized constituency at the centre of the county. It is entirely bounded by other constituencies in the county.



Changes for the 2010 general election

See also: United Kingdom general election, 2010 and Constituencies in the 2010 United Kingdom general election

In its fifth periodical report, the Boundary Commission for England recommended that the Hertfordshire constituencies used for the 1997, 2001 and 2005 general elections should be retained for the 2010 election. It did however suggest slight boundary changes to some constituencies, in an effort to reduce electoral disparity between constituencies. The recommendations, which became law with the Parliamentary Constituencies (England) Order 2007, also ensured that local government wards in Hertfordshire would no longer be split between two Parliamentary constituencies.

Dash (—) signifies that there were no changes.

No. on mapConstituencyWards added from 2005Wards removed from 2005Pre-2010 BoundariesPost-2010 Boundaries
A map of a county, divided into eleven constituencies
The same map of a county. It is divided into eleven constituencies, some of which have slightly different boundaries.
2Hemel HempsteadBovingdon Flaunden & Chipperfield
3Hertford and StortfordHertford Rural South
5Hitchin and HarpendenCadwell Graveley & Wymondley, SandridgeLetchworth Wilbury, Marshalswick North
6North East HertfordshireHertford Rural South, Walkern, Letchworth WilburyCadwell Graveley & Wymondley
7South West HertfordshireBovingdon Flaunden & Chipperfield
8St AlbansMarshalswick North, Bedmond & Primrose HillSandridge
10WatfordBedmond & Primrose Hill
11Welwyn Hatfield
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