Important: Labour marginals candidate selection – please read and share

top 80 cropped

As the SKWAWKBOX covered last week, Labour’s NEC (National Executive Committee) has signed off on a change of procedure for the selection of parliamentary candidates in eighty key target seats the party aims to win in the next General Election.

Previously for many years the NEC has appointed a panel of NEC members to run selections – which many members feel has resulted in the selection of too many ‘parachuted-in’ candidates or who align with the usually right-wing views of selectors.

But for these eighty seats, local members will elect the selection panel before voting on a shortlist of candidates selected by that panel – a hugely welcome improvement to the party’s internal democracy and a massive opportunity to bring the make-up of the parliamentary Labour Party (PLP) more into line with the party’s membership.

Below is a list (taken from here) of the 80 seats, along with the small, in many cases tiny, swing needed to win them for Labour – and if you live in one of them and are interested in standing, or know someone who is, the SKWAWKBOX wants to hear from you – see below for more info:

(Edit: the list now shows the top eighty English seats – as Scotland and Wales will use their own selection procedures)

Rank   Region Majority Swing Needed
1 Southampton Itchen South East 31 0.03%
6 Pudsey Yorkshire and the Humber 331 0.31%
7 Hastings and Rye South East 346 0.32%
8 Chipping Barnet London 353 0.32%
9 Thurrock East of England 345 0.34%
14 Calder Valley Yorkshire and the Humber 609 0.52%
15 Norwich North East of England 507 0.55%
16 Broxtowe East Midlands 863 0.78%
17 Stoke-on-Trent South West Midlands 663 0.80%
18 Telford West Midlands 720 0.81%
20 Bolton West North West 936 0.92%
22 Northampton North East Midlands 807 1.00%
23 Hendon London 1,072 1.03%
24 Mansfield East Midlands 1,057 1.05%
25 Middlesbrough South and Cleveland East North East 1,020 1.07%
26 Milton Keynes South South East 1,725 1.34%
27 Northampton South East Midlands 1,159 1.41%
28 Pendle North West 1,279 1.43%
30 Milton Keynes North South East 1,915 1.50%
31 Morecambe and Lunesdale North West 1,399 1.53%
32 Finchley and Golders Green London 1,657 1.58%
34 Camborne and Redruth South West 1,577 1.63%
35 Putney London 1,554 1.66%
36 Harrow East London 1,757 1.73%
37 Watford East of England 2,092 1.78%
38 Copeland North West 1,695 1.97%
39 Morley and Outwood Yorkshire and the Humber 2,104 2.01%
40 Vale of Glamorgan Wales 2,190 2.04%
41 Corby East Midlands 2,690 2.24%
43 Swindon South South West 2,464 2.40%
44 Worcester West Midlands 2,490 2.42%
45 Crawley South East 2,457 2.44%
46 Blackpool North and Cleveleys North West 2,023 2.47%
48 Chingford and Woodford Green London 2,438 2.60%
50 Reading West South East 2,876 2.78%
52 Derbyshire North East East Midlands 2,861 2.84%
53 Carlisle North West 2,599 3.02%
54 Southport North West 2,914 3.04%
57 Rossendale and Darwen North West 3,216 3.21%
59 Truro and Falmouth South West 3,792 3.35%
61 Scarborough and Whitby Yorkshire and the Humber 3,435 3.40%
62 Walsall North West Midlands 2,601 3.41%
63 Stevenage East of England 3,384 3.43%
68 Loughborough East Midlands 4,269 3.94%
70 Cities of London and Westminster London 3,148 4.07%
71 Filton and Bradley Stoke South West 4,182 4.12%
73 Shipley Yorkshire and the Humber 4,681 4.38%
74 Erewash East Midlands 4,534 4.55%
77 Worthing East and Shoreham South East 5,106 4.81%
79 Sherwood East Midlands 5,198 4.87%
80 Gloucester South West 5,520 5.10%
81 Nuneaton West Midlands 4,739 5.14%
82 Colchester East of England 5,677 5.30%
83 Uxbridge and Ruislip South London 5,034 5.39%
84 Wimbledon London 5,622 5.46%
85 Plymouth Moor View South West 5,019 5.53%
87 Shrewsbury and Atcham West Midlands 6,627 5.69%
89 Rochford and Southend East East of England 5,548 5.87%
90 Halesowen and Rowley Regis West Midlands 5,253 5.92%
91 Altrincham and Sale West North West 6,426 6.09%
92 Wycombe South East 6,578 6.15%
93 Dover South East 6,437 6.19%
94 Thanet South South East 6,387 6.42%
98 South Ribble North West 7,421 6.77%
100 Rushcliffe East Midlands 8,010 6.87%
101 Welwyn Hatfield East of England 7,369 7.13%
102 York Outer Yorkshire and the Humber 8,289 7.22%
103 Stafford West Midlands 7,729 7.44%
104 Swindon North South West 8,335 7.59%
105 Kingswood South West 7,500 7.69%
106 Harlow East of England 7,031 7.84%
107 Macclesfield North West 8,608 7.93%
108 Rugby West Midlands 8,212 8.00%
109 Stourbridge West Midlands 7,654 8.12%
110 Redditch West Midlands 7,363 8.14%
111 Bournemouth East South West 7,937 8.16%
112 Elmet and Rothwell Yorkshire and the Humber 9,805 8.23%
116 Basingstoke South East 9,466 8.46%
117 Bournemouth West South West 7,711 8.66%
118 Waveney East of England 9,215 8.75%

If you wish to register your interest in standing as a parliamentary candidate in one of the above seats, please complete this online form so we can co-ordinate support to get great candidates ready for the application and selection process in their constituency.

The SKWAWKBOX is provided free of charge but depends on the generosity of its readers to be viable. If you can afford to, please click here to arrange a one-off or modest monthly donation via PayPal. Thanks for your support so this blog can keep bringing you information the Establishment would prefer you not to know about.


  1. Marginals are already being asked to decide if they want short lists of all women, not all women or not bothered.

  2. It is & always has been the norm for members to select parliamentary candidates.
    Only in special circumstances does the NEC carry out the selection.
    Please stop perpetuating these myths.

    1. Members select *parliamentary* candidates, but the list they select from is routinely stuffed with people HQ or a usually right-dominated NEC subset decides are ‘suitable’. Especially in the case of all-women shortlists, as sadly local women keen to stand are often in short supply. There’s a suspicion that AWS are used as a convenient way of ensuring a ‘suitable’ outside candidate is selected.

  3. stafford Clp say they are now a target seat. Is there an updated list of target seats ?

  4. We were informed by Ann Black that our constituency, Kingswood is included in this process. Kingswood does not appear on your list.

  5. This isn’t a change from normal procedure; this IS normal procedure. As far as I know the use of NEC panels to select in certain circumstances, which sometimes leads to accusations of “parachuting in”, also remains, because the only occasions that procedure is used is when a hurried selection is necessary, as for a lot of constituencies in the last election, and more typically when a sitting MP has previously said they would stand again, but at the last minute decides to stand down. The rest of the time, open nominations, shortlisting by constituency members (and affiliates) and selection by local members (and affiliates) is normal; this is how my constituency selected Emily Thornberry, when in 2003 Chris Smith decided to stand down, & we were a (defensive) target seat at that time, & we chose to have an all-women shortlist.

    So nothing to get excited about, business as usual, but important news (although this has been out for a week or two if you follow those NEC members who report-back like Alice Perry!

  6. I live in East Worthing and Shoreham. We have an EC meeting on Tuesday. I believe we are looking at a panel selection for our candidate.

    Kind regards,

    Catherine Glynn-Davies


  7. I hope this doesn’t seem to fickle after all the amazing responses to my crowdfunder. I filled in the form above, hopefully that explains my rationale and why I am giving this consideration. It is of course dependent on what else happens and who emerges. What matters is having a solid standard bearer who can go forward to support Jeremy. Personal ambition or aggrandizement is irrelevant what matters is the socialist cause.

  8. Targeting SNP seats reduces the likelyhood of a labour government,. Had Scottish labour targeted the tories in Scotland instead of teaming with them and the lib dems to attack the SNP’s then jeremy corbyn could have been Prime minister right now as part of a progressive coalition.

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