Page last updated at 12:06 GMT, Friday, 23 April 2010 13:06 UK

Constituency Profile: Fermanagh and South Tyrone

Noel Thompson
By Noel Thompson

So another election is on the way, and once again BBC Newsline will be pulling out the stops to make sure you have all the information you need to make your choice when May 6th rolls round.

Like most journalists, I love elections. The rise in the political temperature puts everyone on their mettle and adds an element of tension and expectation to every political encounter.

The cut and thrust of debate between politicians and between politicians and journalists takes on an extra edge, with the candidates wary of coming out with anything which would frighten off a potential voter, and the journalists eager to make the politicians commit themselves to positions and policies to which they can be held should they be successful.

For BBC Newsline, the challenge is to keep election coverage fresh and compelling.

We try to make it relevant to you, our viewers, by illustrating how the campaigns and the promises they make will affect your everyday life.

And we offer you, as much as we can in the limited daily time available, the opportunity to put your questions to the politicians.

So this year I'll be out on our outside broadcast vehicle each Friday between now and the election, in Banbridge, in Portrush, Enniskillen and in Belfast, with a live panel of politicians, putting to them some of the questions you have sent us.

During the run-up to the election we'll have constant updates about the individual constituencies around Northern Ireland and the political personalities challenging for the right to represent them at Westminster.

So I do hope you'll tune in and join us on this latest short and exciting electoral journey, the four weeks will go by in a flash.

BBC Newsline Election Roadshows

Between now and the election, BBC Newsline will be live, local and listening to people about what's concerning them in each of the 18 Northern Ireland constituencies.

Every Friday Noel Thompson will be out and about putting your questions on a variety of issues to the candidates standing for Westminster.

We continue our series of outside broadcasts this week in Belfast with a general discussion among some senior party members.

If you have a question on any of those subjects please send them to us.

Email us at or text the word Newsline followed by your comments to 63399. You can also phone 03704 111 630.

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

Fermanagh and South Tyrone is the only place in which unionists are fielding a unity candidate in an attempt to win back the seat off the outgoing MP, Sinn Fein's Michelle Gildernew .

Almost 70,000 people can vote here.

This constituency repeatedly has the highest turnout.

It is home to our only geopark, Marble Arch Caves, and to Lough Erne which has 154 islands.

While it is a long road from the West to Westminster, whichever candidate wins will soon be able to travel there that little bit faster with the extension of the M1 motorway between Dungannon and Ballygawley.

Access to health services is an important issue for people living here as our area reporter Julian Fowler has been finding out for our thirteenth constituency report.

In the thirteenth of our constituency profiles, Julian Fowler looks at the health service in Fermanagh and South Tyrone, while Noel Thompson chairs a debate between representatives from the main parties.

Previous constituency profiles


Print Sponsor

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2017 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific