1. ITV Report

Constituency Profile: South Shields

Labour currently holds South Shields. Photo: ITV News Tyne Tees

The former Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, used to represent this coastal town at the mouth of the River Tyne.

He stepped down from British politics in 2013 after narrowly losing out to his brother, Ed Miliband, in the race for the Labour leadership.

South Shields used to be a hub for coal mining and shipbuilding but the decline of those industries led to high unemployment. That eventually subsided as South Shields became a commuter town and focused on light industry and the service sector.

The town has returned Labour MPs continuously since 1935. Emma Lewell-Buck (Labour) won the 2013 by-election and is standing again. However, UKIP performed better than expected in that contest.

The 2013 by-election result:

Labour: 12,493 (50.4%)

UKIP: 5,988 (24.2%)

Conservative: 2,857 (11.5%)

Independent: 1,331 (5.4%)

Independent Socialist: 750 (3.0%)

BNP: 711 (2.9%)

Liberal Democrat: 352 (1.4%)

Monster Raving Loony: 197 (0.8%)

Independent: 57 (0.2%)

Majority: 6,505 (26.3%)

The 2015 candidates:

Norman Dennis (UKIP)

Shirley Ford (Green)

Gitanjali Gordon (Lib Dem)

Emma Lewell-Buck (Lab)

Robet Oliver (Con)

Lisa Nightingale (Independent)

Prospective candidates have until 9th April to submit their nomination papers and become official candidates on 7th May.

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