The East Midlands could be a crucial battleground at the general election, with a host of Labour/Tory marginals. Based on Ladbrokes’ current odds on every constituency, we are forecasting that Labour will gain seven seats straight from the Conservatives. Below is a list of those seats, along with others that we calculate are at most risk. The “lose chance” is the probability, according to our odds, that the incumbent party will be defeated. TCTC = Too Close To Call.
|Seat||2010 Winner||2010 Maj %||Lose Chance||Prediction|
|Amber Valley||Conservative||1.2||66.86%||LAB GAIN|
|Northampton North||Conservative||4.8||59.79%||LAB GAIN|
|High Peak||Conservative||9.3||39.18%||CON HOLD|
|Leicestershire NW||Conservative||14.5||24.51%||CON HOLD|
|Boston & Skegness||Conservative||28.8||25.88%||CON HOLD|
|Louth and Horncastle||Conservative||27.5||19.83%||CON HOLD|
One of the most high profile casualties could be Anna Soubry in Broxtowe, with former Labour MP Nick Palmer a 2/7 shot to retake the seat. We list Corby as a Labour gain, although they currently hold it after the by-election to replace Louise Mensch. We’ve seen some informed money for the Conservatives to win this back and their odds have shortened from 4/1 to 3/1. New Education Secretary Nicky Morgan faces a tough battle to remain at Westminster, with the result in her Loughborough constituency currently too close to call; both Labour and the Tories are listed at 10/11.
We give the Liberal Democrats virtually no chance of winning a seat in the region, with the interesting exception of Ashfield. They achieved the second highest Lab-Lib swing in the country here in 2010 and came within 200 votes of winning. The early betting suggests that a Lib Dem gain is not out of the question here in 2015, at 4/1.
UKIP have two of their best chances in the whole of the UK in this region. They got over 50% of the vote in Boston & Skegness in May’s European elections and are just 7/2 to overturn a huge Tory majority. Neighbouring Louth & Horncastle is another very live possibility for them, particularly with the long-standing Peter Tapsell stepping down as MP; UKIP are 4/1 to take the seat.
So, here’s how we think the seats will break down in 2015, with changes from 2010:
- Cons 23 (-7)
- Lab 22 (+7)