Paisley and Renfrewshire South (UK Parliament constituency)
Paisley and Renfrewshire South is a constituency of the House of Commons, located in Renfrewshire, Scotland to the southwest of Glasgow. It elects one Member of Parliament at least once every five years using the first-past-the-post system of voting.
|Paisley and Renfrewshire South|
for the House of Commons
|Major settlements||Paisley, Johnstone, Kilbarchan, Howwood, Lochwinnoch|
|Member of Parliament||Mhairi Black (SNP)|
|Created from||Paisley South, Paisley North, and Renfrewshire West|
Constituency profile and voting patterns
Covering the southern portion of the Renfrewshire council area, the east of the constituency includes half of Paisley, as well as the smaller town of Johnstone and the villages of Kilbarchan and Elderslie.
This is contrasted with the rural south and west of the seat, containing the villages of Lochwinnoch, Howwood and several hamlets and farms. The constituency also contains the Gleniffer Braes Country Park to the south and Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park to the west, notable for Castle Semple Loch.
This seat had traditionally been considered a heartland for the Labour Party, who had held constituencies containing Paisley and its surrounding towns and villages since 1945.
First used in the 2005 election, this seat was won by Labour politician Douglas Alexander, who had been previously MP for its predecessor constituency of Paisley South since 1997. Alexander was re-elected in the 2010 election with an increased share of the vote and majority.
The aftermath of the Scottish independence referendum 2014 resulted in a substantial increase in support for the SNP. Subsequently, the 2015 election saw the SNP candidate Mhairi Black gain the seat on a 27% swing. Black was re-elected in the 2017 election but only held the seat marginally over Labour. However, in the 2019 election she increased her majority and won over half the vote, making it a safe seat for the SNP.
The seat has also seen support for other parties, with the Conservative Party rising in 2017 and 2019 to around a fifth of the vote share. There is also a Liberal Democrat vote in the seat, with the party achieving 7% at the most recent election. The constituency has also seen several minor parties and independents stand in its history, however individually none of these have won more than 2% of the vote in any election.
This seat was created in 2005 from the bulk of the former Paisley South seat, with minor additions from neighbouring constituencies. Population areas in this seat include Glenburn, Saucel and Hunterhill, Johnstone and Kilbarchan.
Members of Parliament
The constituency's first MP was Douglas Alexander, who had held the seat since its creation in 2005 and its predecessor Paisley South since 1997. Alexander was the Shadow Foreign Secretary, and has previously held Cabinet posts such as Transport Secretary and Scottish Secretary (2006–07; joint), and International Development Secretary (2007–10).
When SNP candidate Mhairi Black gained the seat in May 2015, she was 20 years and 237 days old, making her the youngest ever Member of Parliament (MP) elected to the House of Commons since at least the Reform Act of 1832, replacing William Wentworth-Fitzwilliam; who was 20 years and 11 months old when elected in 1832. She subsequently held the seat at the snap 2017 general election and 2019 general election.
Elections in the 2010s
|Liberal Democrats||Jack Clark||2,918||6.8||+3.6|
|Liberal Democrats||Eileen McCartin||1,327||3.2||+1.0|
|Liberal Democrats||Eileen McCartin||1,010||2.2||–7.3|
|Scottish Socialist||Sandra Webster||278||0.6||–0.3|
|SNP gain from Labour||Swing||+26.9|
|Liberal Democrats||Ashay Ghai||3,812||9.5||–8.1|
|Scottish Socialist||Jimmy Kerr||375||0.9||–1.1|
Elections in the 2000s
|Liberal Democrats||Eileen McCartin||6,672||17.6||+8.0|
|Scottish Socialist||Iain Hogg||789||2.1||-0.7|
|Pride in Paisley Party||Gordon Matthew||381||1.0||N/A|
|Socialist Labour||Howard Broadbent||107||0.3||N/A|
|Labour win (new seat)|
- "Paisley and Renfrewshire South: Aristotle". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 18 June 2008. Retrieved 28 May 2008.
- Rix, Kathryn (11 May 2015). "The youngest MP? The 'baby' of the first Reformed Parliament". The Victorian Commons.
- "Mhairi Black defies exit poll odds by holding Paisley & Renfrewshire South". The National.
- "2019 - UK General Election". Renfrewshire Council. Renfrewshire Council. Retrieved 13 December 2019.
- "Paisley & Renfrewshire South parliamentary constituency - Election 2019". BBC News. Retrieved 16 December 2019.
- "SNP to meet over election candidates". 22 April 2017 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
- "Mhairi Black confirms she will stand in General Election". www.scotsman.com.
- "Election Data 2015". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 17 October 2015. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- "Election Data 2010". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 26 July 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2015.
- "Election Data 2005". Electoral Calculus. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2015.