Election 97
 Belfast North


Old constituency Belfast North
Current MP Cecil Walker
UUP 92 17,240
SDLP 92 7,615
Sinn Fein 92 4,693
Alliance 92 2,246
Conservative 92 2,107
Elected party Ulster Unionist
Belfast North

Robert Waller writes

An intensely divided seat within a divided city, North Belfast contains areas that have seen the UK's greatest civil strife of postwar years. The Ardoyne, New Lodge, the Shankill Road (heart of the loyalist working class) and many other place names are sadly familiar from the daily news bulletins. Catholics are in a substantial minority in this seat - in 1992 the SDLP and Sinn Fein polled one-third of the vote between them - but the majority of the seat is safely Unionist.

Although North Belfast fell to the DUP in 1979, it has been held by Cecil Walker for the Ulster Unionists since 1983. The expansion of the seat to take in suburban and rural districts should not affect the outcome this time, which will be a clear win for him.