ConservativeHome has learned that Robin Millar, Virginia Crosbie, and Sarah Atherton have all been readopted for their North Wales constituencies under their new boundaries. Each was first elected at the 2019 election, and each has a majority in their current constituency of under 2,500.

According to Electoral Calculus’ prediction, in Millar’s new seat of Bangor Aberconwy (which adds parts of Arfon, held by Plaid Cymru, and Clwyd West, held by the Conservatives, to his current seat of Aberconwy), he would have a notional majority of 153. With the site currently predicting Labour to win 422 seats at the next election against our 134, it is no surprise to see them predicting Millar will lose this new seat by quite a margin. The greater humiliation, perhaps, is they have him plummeting to third, behind Plaid, in a seat the Conservatives have held since 2010.

Being the seat for the isle of Anglesey, Crosbie’s constituency of Ynys Mon is not expected to change its composition ahead of the next election. It has long been a three-way marginal, held by the Conservatives, Plaid Cymru, Labour, and the Tories again in turn. Electoral Calculus predicts a tight result next time, but just not for the Conservatives. Labour is shown winning on 36 per cent, Plaid second on 32 per cent, and Crosbie plummeting to third on only 19 per cent.

Unlike her two near neighbours, Atherton is expected to do quite well out of the boundary review. The addition of parts of Clwyd South, another 2019 Tory gain, bring her majority up from 2,131 to a predicted 4,064. Nevertheless, this doesn’t stop Electoral Calculus giving her only a 10 per cent chance of winning next time – and from predicting a Labour majority of 20 per cent.  Of the three, Atherton was the first to achieve ministerial office, with two months as Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence People, Veterans and Service Families under Liz Truss. 

With two years to go and a hopeful recovery in the polls as the economic good news sweeps in, one would not want to write off any of these seats just yet, and we wish all three all the best in fighting them.

A point of interest. In both 2017 and 2020, opinion polls placed the Tories ahead of Labour. Wales voted to Leave, and has long proved a fertile ground for UKIP, the Brexit Party, and Reform UK. One cannot hope but get the impression that the Tories have lost a historic chance to turn the Principality blue. It is a shame that MPs like Millar, Crosbie, and Atherton look set to be brief interludes in a turgid and perpetual sea of Labour red.

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