Election 97

The East Midlands

East Midlands 92 East Midlands 97
The electorally critical East Midlands repeated the familiar nationwide pattern, with Labour taking every one of its target seats and more, with the Conservatives reduced to a rural/suburban rump.

Some old loyalties die hard, however, and Lincolshire remains Tory blue, with the single exception of Lincoln city itself, effectively ceded to Labour by boundary changes. In Nottinghamshire, an all-too-familiar picture of Conservative meltdown was visible - here Labour completed the job it began in 1992, with gains at Broxtowe, Gedling and Newark, all seats that the Tories must have expected to keep. Their only Notts MP is now their possible leader Kenneth Clarke at Rushcliffe.

Derbyshire, too, now contains only one Tory seat, rural Derbyshire West. Labour easily gained its targets of Amber Valley, Derby North, Derbyshire South (unseating outspoken Tory Edwina Currie) and Erewash, also picking up less-marginal High Peak.

Leicestershire was rather kinder to the Tories, though Labour easily took its target seats of Leicestershire NW and Loughborough, while Northamptonshire was the site of yet another Conservative disaster - once again they only hold one seat at rural Daventry. Labour mopped up their targets of Corby and Northampton North, going on to take the much less likely Northampton South, Wellingborough and Kettering, the last by a mere 189 votes.

The Liberal Democrats had no professed electoral hopes in the East Midlands, and their pessimism was justified - this is the only one of the standard British regions to return no Lib Dems to the Commons, either now or in 1992.