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Westminster General Election (NI)
Thursday 1 May 1997



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Text and Research: Fionnuala McKenna
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Westminster General Election (NI)
Thursday 1 May 1997

This is a first draft (v1) of the results of the 1997 Westminster General Election in Northern Ireland.

Introduction

The following provides the results from the 18 Northern Ireland constituencies where the 1997 Westminster General Election was contested. There were changes to the boundaries of the constituencies since the last Westminster election in 1992. These changes resulted in one additional constituency and also affected most of the previous 17 constituencies. Direct comparison between the results in 1992 and those in 1997 are not therefore possible. The reader should also note that because of a electoral pact between the Ulster Unionist Party (Ulster Unionist Party) and the Democratic Unionist Party (Democratic Unionist Party) it is not possible to gauge the absolute support of the two parties across the region. This is also true for those parties which did not stand in all the constituencies.

Summary of Results

Electorate: 1,175,162
Valid votes cast: 790,884
Spoiled votes: 3,120
Percentage poll: 67.3%

Party
Number of seats
Vote
% Valid Vote
Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
10 seats
258,439
32.7%
Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP)
3 seats
190,844
24.1%
Sinn Féin (SF)
2 seats
126,921
16.1%
Democratic Unionist Party (DUP)
2 seats
107,348
13.6%
Alliance Party of Northern Ireland (APNI)
0 seats
62,972
8.0%
United Kingdom Unionist Party (UKU)
1 seat
12,817
1.6%
Conservative Party (C)
0 seats
9,858
1.2%
Northern Ireland Women's Coalition (NIWC)
0 seats
3,024
0.4%
Workers' Party (WP)
0 seats
2,766
0.3%
Natural Law Party (NLP)
0 seats
2,210
0.3%

Source: Various media reports


Constituency Results

The results for each of the 18 constituencies contain the following information:
Name of constituency
Outcome of vote
Name of candidate (Party) Number of votes (Percentage share of the vote)

Size of the majority; size of the Electorate; and Turnout

East Antrim
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
Roy Beggs (Ulster Unionist Party) 13,318 (38.77%)
Sean Neeson (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 6,929 (20.17%)
Jack McKee (Democratic Unionist Party) 6,682 (19.45%)
Terence Dick (Conservative Party) 2,334 (6.79%)
Billy Donaldson (Progressive Unionist Party) 1,757 (5.11%)
Danny O'Connor (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 1,576 (4.59%)
Robert Mason (Independent) 1,145 (3.33%)
Ms Chrissie McAuley (Sinn Féin) 543 (1.58%)
Ms Maura McCann (Natural Law Party) 69 (0.20%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 6,389; Electorate 58,963; Turnout 34,353 (58.26%)

North Antrim
Seat retained by Democratic Unionist Party (DUP)
Rev Ian Paisley (Democratic Unionist Party) 21,495 (46.54%)
James Leslie (Ulster Unionist Party) 10,921 (23.65%)
Sean Farren (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 7,333 (15.88%)
James McCarry (Sinn Féin) 2,896 (6.27%)
Dr David Alderdice (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 2,845 (6.16%)
Ms Bronagh Hinds (Northern Ireland Women's Coalition) 580 (1.26%)
John Wright (Natural Law Party) 116 (0.25%)

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) majority 10,574; Electorate 72,411; Turnout 46,186 (63.78%)

South Antrim
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
Clifford Forsythe (Ulster Unionist Party) 23,108 (57.49%)
Donovan McClelland (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 6,497 (16.16%)
David Ford (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 4,668 (11.61%)
Hugh Smyth (Progressive Unionist Party) 3,490 (8.68%)
Henry Cushinan (Sinn Féin) 2,229 (5.55%)
Ms Barbara Briggs (Natural Law Party) 203 (0.51%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 16,611; Electorate 69,414; Turnout 40,195 (57.91%)

Belfast East
Seat retained by Democratic Unionist Party (DUP)
Peter Robinson (Democratic Unionist Party) 16,640 (42.63%)
Reg Empey (Ulster Unionist Party) 9,886 (25.33%)
Jim Hendron (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 9,288 (23.80%)
Miss Sarah Dines (Conservative Party) 928 (2.38%)
Dominic Corr (Sinn Féin) 810 (2.08%)
Mrs Patricia Lewsley (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 629 (1.61%)
Derek Dougan (Independent) 541 (1.39%)
Joseph Bell (Workers' Party) 237 (0.61%)
David Collins (Natural Law Party) 70 (0.18%)

Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) majority 6,754; Electorate 61,744; Turnout 39,029 (63.21%)

Belfast North
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
Cecil Walker (Ulster Unionist Party) 21,478 (51.81%)
Alban Maginness (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 8,454 (20.39%)
Gerry Kelly (Sinn Féin) 8,375 (20.20%)
Tom Campbell (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 2,221 (5.36%)
Peter Emerson (Green Party) 539 (1.30%)
Paul Treanor (Workers' Party) 297 (0.72%)
Ms Andrea Gribben (Natural Law Party) 88 (0.21%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 13,024; Electorate 64,577; Turnout 41,452 (64.19%)

Belfast South
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
Rev Martin Smyth (Ulster Unionist Party) 14,201 (35.97%)
Dr Alasdair McDonnell (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 9,601 (24.32%)
David Ervine (Progressive Unionist Party) 5,687 (14.40%)
Steve McBride (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 5,112 (12.95%)
Sean Hayes (Sinn Féin) 2,019 (5.11%)
Ms Annie Campbell (Northern Ireland Women's Coalition) 1,204 (3.05%)
Miss Myrtle Boal (Conservative Party) 962 (2.44%)
Niall Cusack (Independent Labour) 292 (0.74%)
Patrick Lynn (Workers' Party) 286 (0.72%)
James Anderson (Natural Law Party) 120 (0.30%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 4,600; Electorate 63,439; Turnout 39,484 (62.24%)

Belfast West
Seat regained by Sinn Féin (SF) from Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP)
Gerry Adams (Sinn Féin) 25,662 (55.93%)
Dr Joe Hendron (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 17,753 (38.69%)
Frederick Parkinson (Ulster Unionist Party) 1,556 (3.39%)
John Lowry (Workers' Party) 721 (1.57%)
Liam Kennedy (Human Rights) 102 (0.22%)
Ms Mary Daly (Natural Law Party) 91 (0.20%)

Sinn Féin (SF) majority 7,909; Electorate 61,785; Turnout 45,885 (74.27%)

North Down
Seat retained by United Kingdom Unionist Party (UKU)
Robert McCartney (United Kingdom Unionist Party) 12,817 (35.06%)
Alan McFarland (Ulster Unionist Party) 11,368 (31.10%)
Sir Oliver Napier (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 7,554 (20.66%)
Leonard Fee (Conservative Party) 1,810 (4.95%)
Miss Marietta Farrell (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 1,602 (4.38%)
Ms Jane Morrice (Northern Ireland Women's Coalition) 1,240 (3.39%)
Tom Mullins (Natural Law Party) 108 (0.30%)
Robert Mooney (Northern Ireland Party) 57 (0.16%)

United Kingdom Unionist Party (UKU) majority 1,449; Electorate 63,010; Turnout 36,556 (58.02%)

South Down
Seat retained by Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP)
Edward McGrady (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 26,181 (52.91%)
Dermot Nesbitt (Ulster Unionist Party) 16,248 (32.83%)
Mick Murphy (Sinn Féin) 5,127 (10.36%)
Julian Crozier (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 1,711 (3.46%)
Ms Rosaleen McKeon (Natural Law Party) 219 (0.44%)

Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) majority 9,933; Electorate 69,855; Turnout 49,486 (70.84%)

Fermanagh and South Tyrone
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
Ken Maginnis (Ulster Unionist Party) 24,862 (51.48%)
Gerry McHugh (Sinn Féin) 11,174 (23.14%)
Tommy Gallagher (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 11,060 (22.90%)
Stephen Farry (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 977 (2.02%)
Simeon Gillan (Natural Law Party) 217 (0.45%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 13,688; Electorate 64,600; Turnout 48,290 (74.75%)

Foyle
Seat retained by Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP)
John Hume (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 25,109 (52.51%)
Mitchel McLaughlin (Sinn Féin) 11,445 (23.94%)
William Hay (Democratic Unionist Party) 10,290 (21.52%)
Mrs Helen-Marie Bell (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 817 (1.71%)
Donn Brennan (Natural Law Party) 154 (0.32%)

Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) majority 13,664; Electorate 67,620; Turnout 47,815 (70.71%)

Lagan Valley
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
Jeffrey Donaldson (Ulster Unionist Party) 24,560 (55.43%)
Seamus Close (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 7,635 (17.23%)
Edwin Poots (Democratic Unionist Party) 6,005 (13.55%)
Ms Dolores Kelly (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 3,436 (7.75%)
Stuart Sexton (Conservative Party) 1,212 (2.74%)
Ms Sue Ramsey (Sinn Féin) 1,110 (2.51%)
Frances McCarthy (Workers' Party) 203 (0.46%)
Hugh Finlay (Natural Law Party) 149 (0.34%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 16,925; Electorate 71,225; Turnout 44,310 (62.21%)

East Londonderry
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
William Ross (Ulster Unionist Party) 13,558 (35.58%)
Gregory Campbell (Democratic Unionist Party) 9,764 (25.63%)
Arthur Doherty (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 8,273 (21.71%)
Malachy O'Kane (Sinn Féin) 3,463 (9.09%)
Ms Yvonne Boyle (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 2,427 (6.37%)
James Holmes (Conservative Party) 436 (1.14%)
Ms Clare Gallen (Natural Law Party) 100 (0.26%)
Ian Anderson (National Democrats) 81 (0.21%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 3,794; Electorate 58,831; Turnout 38,102 (64.77%)

Mid Ulster
Seat gained by Sinn Féin (SF)
Martin McGuinness (Sinn Féin) 20,294 (40.05%)
Rev William McCrea (Democratic Unionist Party) 18,411 (36.34%)
Denis Haughey (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 11,205 (22.11%)
Ephren Bogues (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 460 (0.91%)
Mrs Marian Donnelly (Workers' Party) 238 (0.47%)
Ms Maureen Murray (Natural Law Party) 61 (0.12%)

Sinn Féin (SF) majority 1,883; Electorate 58,836; Turnout 50,669 (86.12%)

Newry and Armagh
Seat retained by Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP)
Seamus Mallon (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 22,904 (42.99%)
Danny Kennedy (Ulster Unionist Party) 18,015 (33.82%)
Patrick McNamee (Sinn Féin) 11,218 (21.06%)
Pete Whitcroft (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 1,015 (1.91%)
David Evans (Natural Law Party) 123 (0.23%)

Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) majority 4,889; Electorate 70,652; Turnout 53,275 (75.40%)

Strangford
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
John Taylor (Ulster Unionist Party) 18,431 (44.29%)
Mrs Iris Robinson (Democratic Unionist Party) 12,579 (30.22%)
Kieran McCarthy (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 5,467 (13.14%)
Peter O'Reilly (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 2,775 (6.67%)
Gilbert Chalk (Conservative Party) 1,743 (4.19%)
Garret O Fachtna (Sinn Féin) 503 (1.21%)
Mrs Sarah Mullins (Natural Law Party) 121 (0.29%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 5,852; Electorate 69,980; Turnout 41,619 (59.47%)

West Tyrone
New seat gained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
William Thompson (Ulster Unionist Party) 16,003 (34.58%)
Joe Byrne (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 14,842 (32.07%)
Pat Doherty (Sinn Féin) 14,280 (30.86%)
Ms Ann Gormley (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 829 (1.79%)
Tommy Owens (Workers' Party) 230 (0.50%)
Robert Johnstone (Natural Law Party) 91 (0.20%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 1,161; Electorate 58,168; Turnout 46,275 (79.55%)

Upper Bann
Seat retained by Ulster Unionist Party (UUP)
David Trimble (Ulster Unionist Party) 20,836 (43.60%)
Ms Brid Rodgers (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 11,584 (24.24%)
Ms Bernadette O'Hagan (Sinn Féin) 5,773 (12.08%)
Mervyn Carrick (Democratic Unionist Party) 5,482 (11.47%)
Dr William Ramsay (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 3,017 (6.31%)
Tom French (Workers' Party) 554 (1.16%)
Brian Price (Conservative Party) 433 (0.91%)
Jack Lyons (Natural Law Party) 108 (0.23%)

Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) majority 9,252; Electorate 70,398; Turnout 47,787 (67.88%)


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