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 Gosport
Other Conservative hold
Name Party Votes % +/- %
Peter Viggers Conservative 17,364 43.6 0.0
Richard Williams Labour 14,743 37.1 +6.4
Roger Roberts Liberal Democrat 6,011 15.1 -4.5
John Bowles UK Independence 1,162 2.9  
Kevin Chetwynd Socialist Labour 509 1.3  
Majority 2,621 6.6
Turnout 39,789 57.1 -13.2
Swing
Against 1997 General Election 3.2% from Conservative to Labour

Description
Gosport has been politically schizophrenic: an historically safe parliamentary seat for the Conservatives but with local authority control swinging between the Lib Dems and Labour. However, in the 2000 council elections the Conservatives managed a three-seat gain - not enough to give them overall control, but sufficient to run the council.

The history of the seat is closely tied to the sea, and in particular to the Portsmouth naval base. For hundreds of years its inhabitants have been employed there, and the proportion remains high, even after the cutbacks of recent years.

The string of forts which was built around the south of the constituency to protect the harbour still exists today, while major Navy closures have given the opportunity for a major redevelopment of the harbour.

Nevertheless, this is not an impoverished part of the world, as the peninsula sits between the harbour and the Solent and the wealthy sailing communities of both. Perhaps the biggest issue locally is the MoDís proposed closure of Haslar, the military hospital which nevertheless treats 96,000 civilian cases annually.

Past Results

1997 General Election
 Gosport
Conservative hold
Name Party Votes %
Peter Viggers Conservative 21,085 43.6
Ivan Gray Labour 14,827 30.7
Steve Hogg Liberal Democrat 9,479 19.6
Andrew Blowers Referendum 2,538 5.2
Patrick Ettie Independent 426 0.9
Majority 6,258 12.9
Turnout 48,355 70.3
 
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