Reading West (UK Parliament constituency)
for the House of Commons
|Major settlements||Reading, Theale and Tilehurst|
|Member of Parliament||Alok Sharma (Conservative)|
|Number of members||One|
|Created from||Reading North, Newbury and Reading South|
Reading West is a constituency[n 1] represented in the House of Commons of the UK Parliament since 2010 by Alok Sharma, a Conservative. He is currently serving in the Cabinet as the President for COP26. Sharma previously served as the Business Secretary, the International Development Secretary, and a minister in the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Department for Work and Pensions. [n 2]
The Reading West parliamentary constituency was first contested in 1983, when it was won by a member of the Conservative Party, Tony Durant, the sitting MP for the abolished Reading North constituency. He held the seat through two subsequent general elections until he retired at the 1997 election.
The constituency was then won by Martin Salter for Labour, as part of the landslide that brought Labour back to power under Tony Blair. Salter held the seat through the 13 years of Labour government until Parliament was dissolved in April 2010, but did not stand in the 2010 general election, when Alok Sharma won the seat for the Conservatives.
Since its 1983 creation the constituency has been a bellwether paradigm example of a marginal seat. Boundary changes have taken in areas of population expansion to the east in new largely private sector housing estates for the 2010 election. Unemployment is close to the regional average, which is lower than the national average and the constituency has seen a marked increase in properties and property prices throughout from 2001 to 2011 period which has seen town centre regeneration and investment by a Labour Party-controlled council enhanced by Reading railway station hub improvements and enterprise areas equally.
Boundaries and boundary changes
1983–1997: The Borough of Reading wards of Battle, Katesgrove, Kentwood, Minster, Norcot, Southcote, and Tilehurst, and the District of Newbury wards of Calcot, Pangbourne, Purley, Theale, and Tilehurst.
1997–2010: The Borough of Reading wards of Battle, Kentwood, Minster, Norcot, Southcote, Tilehurst, and Whitley, and the District of Newbury wards of Calcot, Pangbourne, Purley, Theale, and Tilehurst.
The boundary with Reading East was realigned, gaining Whitley ward and losing Katesgrove ward.
2010–present: The Borough of Reading wards of Battle, Kentwood, Minster, Norcot, Southcote, Tilehurst, and Whitley, and the District of West Berkshire wards of Birch Copse, Calcot, Pangbourne, Purley on Thames, Theale, and Westwood.
Marginal changes due to revision of local authority wards.
Members of Parliament
Elections in the 2010s
|Liberal Democrats||Meri O'Connell||4,460||8.9||+3.0|
|Liberal Democrats||Meri O’Connell||3,041||5.9||+1.0|
|Liberal Democrats||Meri O'Connell||2,355||4.9||−15.2|
|Liberal Democrats||Daisy Benson||9,546||20.1||+4.3|
|Common Sense||Howard Thomas||852||1.8||New|
|Conservative gain from Labour||Swing||+12.1|
|Source Reading Borough Council, BBC|
Elections in the 2000s
|Liberal Democrats||Denise Gaines||6,663||15.8||+3.0|
|Source Electoral Commission|
|Liberal Democrats||Polly Martin||5,387||12.8||+0.1|
|Source Guardian Unlimited, ONS|
Elections in the 1990s
|Liberal Democrats||Dee Tomlin||6,153||12.7||−5.4|
|Referendum||Steven G Brown||976||2.0||New|
|UKIP||David M Black||255||0.5||New|
|Labour gain from Conservative||Swing||−15.7|
|Source Guardian Unlimited|
|Liberal Democrats||KH Lock||9,572||18.1||−4.3|
Elections in the 1980s
|Green (UK)||EP Wilson||542||1.07||New|
|Conservative win (new seat)|
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