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Monday, 4 June, 2001, 19:51 GMT 20:51 UK

Battleground seats

With all the parties worried about turnout and tactical voting it's clear that some seats will have more effect on the overall result than others. Over the course of the campaign, BBC News Online will provide coverage from these parts of the country - looking at the way local issues could upset national plans.

Watch/listen to coverage from Week One
Watch/listen to coverage from Week Two
Watch/listen to coverage from Week Three
Watch/listen to coverage from Week Four


4 June 2001 The polls would have us believe that the election is a foregone conclusion, but at a local level in many constituencies it's all rather tighter than that. In some marginals there's everything still to play for, as the BBC's Jon Manel found out when he visited Kingston on Thames.


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31 May 2001

One of the Liberal Democrats' top targets is Cardiff Central, where they came in second in 1997 and won the Welsh Assembly vote. But can they make a dent in a Labour majority of almost 8,000? The BBC's Richard Bilton reports.


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31 May 2001

Tony Blair insisted that voting should matter to everyone, but surveys are forecasting the lowest turnout since 1918 - particularly among young black voters. The BBC's George Alagiah has been to the London constituency of Southwark North and Bermondsey.


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30 May 2001

One of the most memorable moments of the 1997 election took place at the count in Enfield Southgate, when the Conservative MP Michael Portillo lost one of his party's safest seats to a virtually unknown Labour candidate, Stephen Twigg. But the area remains a traditional Tory heartland, so will Stephen Twigg succeed this time round? The BBC's Ben Brown reports.


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29 May 2001

After their strong showing in the Holyrood parliament, the Scottish National Party are hoping to increase their presence in Westminster as well. Their main target is the largely rural constituency of Inverness East Nairn and Lochaber. Transport, health and countryside issues are all major concerns. The BBC's Andrew Cassell reports.


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24 May 2001

The foot-and-mouth crisis has had an affect on politics in some rural areas - not necessarily to the advantage of politicians. One of those regions is Brecon and Radnor in mid Wales from where the BBC's Wyre Davies has sent us this report.


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23 May 2001

Edward Heath's career was most famous for his involvement with Europe, and voters in his former constituency, Bexley have Europe on their minds as well, as the BBC's Richard Bilton discovered.


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Voters in the three-way marginal seat of Hastings care more about local issues than tax harmonisation and the euro - most say the politicians aren't talking about what's important. The BBC's Fergal Parkinson reports.

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22 May 2001

William Hague takes his message to St Ives at the very tip of the South West, a seat the Tories think they can win back from the Liberal Democrats. The BBC's Richard Bilton has been asking locals what they think of his ideas.

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21 May 2001

Winchester is a key Tory target, after being solidly Conservative from the fifties right up to 1997. The BBC's Richard Bilton finds out what people in the crucial Hampshire seat think about the issues of tax and management of the economy.

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19 May 2001

The most electrifying constituency battle in the last election was the one fought in Tatton, in which Martin Bell defeated controversial Tory MP Neil Hamilton. At this election he is standing in another seat held by a Tory, that of Brentwood and Ongar in Essex. Michael Crick reports from there.

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18 May 2001

The railway line between Bedford and St Pancras passes through several key constituencies being targeted by the Conservatives having been won by Labour in the last election. The BBC's Ben McCarthy has been in search of Bedpan man.

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Concerns over foot and mouth and the future of the countryside are at the heart of the election campaign in Lancaster and Wyre, a Labour seat high on the Tory target list. The BBC's Richard Bilton reports from there.

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16 May 2001

Tony Blair launched his manifesto in Birmingham, the message was firmly aimed at the kind of middle England seat that Labour must retain - like nearby Edgbaston. The BBC's Richard Bilton has been to a typical street in the area.

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14 May 2001

The UK Independence Party are showing fresh confidence in this general election after making a breakthrough in the European elections two years ago. The BBC's Reeta Chakrabarti reports from Bexhill and Battle where the party is hoping its brand of robust Euro-sceptisicm will pay big dividends against the Tories.

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9 May 2001

The Sussex town of Hove was once classic Tory heartland which switched to Labour in 1997 but now the tables may turn again. The BBC's Julie Etchingham reports.

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West Bromwich is a multicultural inner city area which had a turnout of just over 50% at the last election. The BBC's Richard Bilton was there to ask local people what the election means to them.

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10 May 2001

Finchley and Golders' Green in North London was held by Margaret Thatcher between 1959 and 1992. Labour pinched it in 1997, and it's just the type of seat the Conservatives have to recapture if they are to win. The BBC's Julie Etchingham has been there.

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11 May 2001

Labour and Green Party members work towards electing a Lib Dem candidate in the Sussex town of Lewes in order to keep the Conservatives out. The BBC's Tim Franks has been to Lewes to talk to some tactical voters.

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