Somewhat more disruptive than we had in mind': The Boundary Commission for England's 2011 Proposed Redistribution of Parliamentary Constituencies

Ron Johnston*, Charles Pattie, David Rossiter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


In February 2011 the UK Parliament passed an Act that both reduced the number of MPs to be elected to the House of Commons and significantly altered the rules for the definition of Parliamentary constituencies. After six redistributions in which organic criteriaMPs representing places with a community of interestdominated the redrawing of constituency boundaries, the new rules gave precedence to an arithmetic criterion: all constituencies must have electorates within 5 per cent of the national quota (average). Seven months later the Boundary Commission published its initial proposals for a new set of 502 constituencies implementing these new rules. This paper evaluates the amount of change to the country's electoral map that this involves, identifies the main features of the new constituency configurations, and assesses their likely impact on UK political life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-59
Number of pages16
JournalPolitical Quarterly
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • redistribution
  • new constituencies
  • England
  • 2011 proposals

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