General Election 2017: Rushcliffe constituency profile

Considered one of the safest Conservative seats in the county, the only surprise in Rushcliffe after June 8 may end up being the winning person – not the winning party.

Ken Clarke is running again for the Tories – he had earlier indicated he planned to stand down and retire, although that was before the surprise snap election was called.

Standing he is, and another victory for him would be is 13th in the constituency.

This aside, it’s worth noting his majority is still not the largest Conservative lead in the county. This belongs to Robert Jenrick in Newark – and with Labour increasing their share of the vote in 2015, Mr Clarke will need to ensure there is no complacency among his core support to win the seat.

Result in 2015: CONSERVATIVE HOLD – Ken Clarke
Majority: 13,829
Electorate: 73,430
Turnout: 75.3 per cent

Constituency boundary

Rushcliffe Constituency boundary. Contains OS data © Crown copyright and database right (2017)

Questioning the candidates

Ken Clarke

Kenneth Clarke – Conservative

Why should people vote for you?
“I hope they will vote for a Conservative majority – with me contributing from the back benches. I don’t recall a bigger combination of problems and bigger prospects of change facing this country in all my political life. I hope I can contribute because I have experience of being involved in quite a lot of it – I believe I can represent people in a way which improves the prospects for our future well-being.”

What local issue is most important in Rushcliffe?
“I think the constituency is largely in line with the mainstream of the public – I think the key thing is actually the economy – it usually is. With all the uncertainties in Britain and the rest of the world – compounded in our case by Brexit – we actually need strong, competent Government to run the economy sensibly.”

What has the area most got going for it?
“I just feel at home here – the great thing about my constituents is they are people like me – I am slightly defiantly provincial and suburbian. I live in this completely mad Westminster bubble where I’m there most of the week – it’s always a great relief to come back here to what I regard as the real world.”

Matthew Faithful

Matthew Faithful – UK Independence Party

Why should people vote for you?

“I’m the only candidate who represents the 40 per cent in Rushcliffe who voted to leave the European Union  and I’m the only candidate in Rushcliffe who represents what Theresa May is offering, genuine or otherwise, those people who normally vote Conservative in Rushcliffe should be voting for me.”

What local issue is most important in Rushcliffe?

“Probably the key thing in the medium term is that Rushcliffe could be abolished – they could lose their constituency [because of boundary changes] and their council and I don’t think may people are aware of it and I don’t think they would like that one bit. That of course and housing – the great [new] housing dump which has been put off for many years.”

What has the area most got going for it? 

“I just love the countryside. The valley out there [In Ruddington] is just one of the most fantastic places that you are going to find – and the people, particularly the older generation. You go out there on the doors and talk to people in the sort of 75 to 85 bracket, who remember Rushcliffe as it was in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s, they can talk to you about the people and the characters – there’s a potential there for what was a great society to be a great society.”

Richard Mallender

Richard Mallender, Green Party

Why should people vote for you?

“Voting Green is about voting for a real commitment on protecting the environment. It’s lovely to have all the other policies that parties do, but unless we’re actually looking after the earth that we live on, then ultimately, we’re going to be running out of resources – which means higher prices. It’s about making sure we have clean air, that the NHS is looked after, and that people take good care of the planet.”

What local issue is most important in Rushcliffe?

“The principle one is Brexit – this has been called the Brexit election and that just figures so hugely in everybody’s minds – not knowing what’s going to happen, the deal that we’re going to get the country has been split pretty much down the middle on this whole issue, Rushcliffe has a big rural hinterland out there as well, there’s farmers who are going to be worried about how their subsidies have maxed out – without EU subsidies some kind of subsidy is going to have to be put forward.”

What has the area most got going for it?

“The people – it’s got a really lovely community feel to it. It’s great that we are in a really lovely area you’ve got West Bridgford in the constituency and you are very close to the countryside, but at the same time there’s all the access to everything in the city as well.”

David Mellen

David Mellen, Labour Party

Why should people vote for you?

“Although there are lots of people who have great respect for Kenneth Clarke there are also people in Rushcliffe – on the face of it a nice, well-to-do area, who are struggling. Many people want a change and I want to go out there and talk to people on the doorsteps, on the streets.”

What local issue is most important in Rushcliffe?

“People are working in public services who have had their wages frozen, schools have had their budgets cut and people are using the health service and find they are waiting longer and longer for an appointment.”

Jayne Phoenix

Jayne Phoenix – Liberal Democrats

Why should people vote for you?

“I represent a party that is fighting against a hard Brexit – many people in Rushcliffe were telling me they are very, very concerned about what’s going to happen to us in the talks and what’s going to be the outcome, but in addition to that they are also very concerned about the fact schools are going to face massive cuts and they are worried about the NHS – if you look at our manifesto we are addressing a lot of these issues.”

What local issue is most important in Rushcliffe?

A lot of parents and grandparents are very concerned about schools funding cuts – you could go anywhere in the country and that would be a concern. The people are what makes an area – you immerse yourself into the community and talk to people about what they are most worried about.

What has the area most got going for it?

“The people really – I’ve met so many people, talked to so many people, and they are concerned about all sorts of things – pretty much what you would be concerned about wherever you lived.”

(Visited 464 times, 1 visits today)