Newry and Armagh

map East
                Antrim East Antrim East Belfast East Belfast East Londonderry Foyle Foyle Fermanagh & South Tyrone Lagan
                Valley Mid-Ulster North Antrim North Antrim Newry & Armagh North Belfast North Belfast North
                Down North Down South Antrim South Belfast South Belfast South Down Strangford Upper Bann West Belfast West Belfast West Tyrone results
              graph
Map and diagram by Conal Kelly

This constituency takes in all of Armagh District Council and the western part of Newry and Mourne District Council. The member of parliament is Conor Murphy (SF), who won the seat when Seamus Mallon (SDLP) retired in 2005. Mallon had defeated Jim Nicholson (UUP) in a 1986 by-election. Sinn Fein have three Assembly seats here, and the other three are held by the SDLP, UUP and DUP (Sinn Fein gained a seat from the SDLP in 2003). See the 1983-1992 Newry and Armagh results.

See spreadsheets from the 2011 Assembly election, the 2010 Westminster election, the 2007 Assembly election, the 2005 Westminster election, the 2003 Assembly election, the 2001 Westminster election, the 1998 Assembly election, the 1997 Westminster election and the 1996 Forum/talks election. See also the detailed guide from 2007 by "Sammy Morse".

Newry and Armagh was created in 1983, hardly changed in 1995 and not changed at all in 2010.

Newry and Armagh's population in the 2001 census was 100,950 (6th of the 18 constituencies).

Results of recent elections


DUP UUP Oth U Alliance Oth SDLP SF
2011a 13.1% 18.7% 2.0% 1.6% 0.2% 23.5% 40.8%
2011lg 11.9% 18.8% 3.0%
3.8% 22.8% 39.7%
2010w 12.8% 19.1% 1.5% 1.2%   23.4% 42.0%
2007a
12.9% 13.1% 5.9% 0.6% 6.6% 19.8% 42.1%
2005w 18.4% 13.9%

1.2% 25.2% 41.4%
2005lg 16.9% 16.1%

4.6% 24.0% 38.5%

2011 Assembly election (six seats)

@Conor Murphy MP (SF) 9,127 (19.6%)
@Danny Kennedy (UUP) 8,718 (18.7%)
@Dominic Bradley (SDLP) 7,123 (15.3%)
@Cathal Boylan (SF) 6,614 (14.2%)
@William Irwin (DUP) 6,101 (13.1%)
Thomas O'Hanlon (SDLP) 3,825 (8.2%)
@Mickey Brady (SF) 3,254 (8.2%)
Barrie Halliday (TUV) 830 (1.8%)
David Murphy (Alliance) 734 (1.6%)
Robert Woods (UKIP) 98 (0.2%)
James Malone (Independent) 90 (0.2%)

@ member of the Assembly when it was dissolved.
SF 18,995 (40.8%, -1.2%) 3 seats
SDLP 10,948 (23.5%, +3.8%) 1 seat
UUP 8,718 (18.7%, +5.6%) 1 seat
DUP 6,101 (13.1%, +0.2%) 1 seat
TUV 830 (1.8%)
Alliance 734 (1.6%, +1.0%)
UKIP 98 (0.2%)
Independent 90 (0.2%)

Electorate: 77,544
Votes cast: 47,562 (61.3%); spoilt votes 1,048 (2.2%)
Valid votes: 46,514; quota 6,645

This was the only constituency where there were no women candidates, and also the only constituency where all six MLA's elected in 2007 were standing; all six were re-elected, O'Hanlon of the SDLP ending 610 votes behind SF's Brady - though with a 478-vote SDLP surplus undistributed, the result was closer than it looked, and I understand that Brady was made to sweat until his running-mates' transfers came through.

2011 local government election

My projection of votes cast in Armagh, Newry Town, Slieve Gullion, and The Fews (except Donaghmore):

SF 18,533 (39.7%)
SDLP 10,641 (22.8%)
UUP 8,778 (18.8%)
DUP 5,574 (11.8%)
TUV 277 (0.6%)
Inds 2,904 (6.2%)

These votes, if cast in a six-seat STV election, would probably get SF three seats and one each for the SDLP, UUP and DUP (though the DUP seat would be tight).

2010 Westminster election (one seat)

*@Conor Murphy (Sinn Féin) 18,857 (42.0%, +0.6%)
@Dominic Bradley (SDLP) 10,526 (23.4%, -1.8%)
@Danny Kennedy (UCUNF) 8,558 (19.1%, +5.2)
William Irwin (DUP) 5,764 (12.8%, -5.6%)
William Frazer (Independent) 656 (1.5%)
Andrew Muir (Alliance) 545 (1.2%)
Electorate: 74,308; Total Poll: 45,249 (60.9%); Invalid Votes: 343 (0.8%); Valid Votes: 44,906

* incumbent
@ elected to the Northern Ireland Assembly from this constituency

A decent defence from Murphy; more interesting is the switch between the two Unionist parties, this beig I think the only seat where the DUP were outpolled by the UUP. However, a six-seat Assembly election on these votes would give no change to the current distribution of MLAs.

2007 Assembly Election

Full details of each count are available here.
*Conor Murphy MP (SF) 7437 (15.0%)
Cathal Boylan (SF) 7105 (14.3%)
*Danny Kennedy (UUP) 6517 (13.1%)
William Irwin (DUP) 6418 (12.9%)
Mickey Brady (SF) 6337 (12.8%)
*Dominic Bradley (SDLP) 5318 (10.7%)
Sharon Haughey (SDLP) 4500 (9.1%)
*Paul Berry (Independent Unionist) 2317 (4.7%)
*Davy Hyland (Independent) 2188 (4.4%)
William Frazer (Independent Unionist) 605 (1.2%)
Arthur Morgan (Green) 599 (1.2%)
Máire Hendron (Alliance) 278 (0.6%)

*Elected in 2003 from Newry and Armagh
SF 20,879 (42.1%, +2.3%) 3 seats
SDLP 9,818 (19.8%, -4.8%) 1 seat
UUP 6,517 (13.1%, -2.4%) 1 seat
DUP 6,418 (12.9%, -5.2%) 1 seat
Ind U's 2,922 (5.9%)
Ind 2,188 (4.4%)
Green 599 (1.2%)
Alliance 278 (0.6%)

Electorate 70,823
Votes cast 50,165 (70.8%); spoilt votes 546 (1.1%)
Valid votes 49,619; quota 7,089

Two incumbent MLAs here had left their original parties and stood as independents - Berry (DUP) and Hyland (SF) - but there was no change in party strengths, and both lost their seats. [On a personal note, both Hendron and Hyland taught at the grammar school I attended in Belfast, though neither of them ever taught me.] On the last count, Haughey was 942 votes behind Bradley (both SDLP), with 441 undistributed SF votes.

2005 Westminster election (5 May, 1 seat)

@Conor Murphy (Sinn Fein) 20,965 (41.4% +10.5%)
@Dominic Bradley (SDLP) 12,770 (25.2% -12.2%)
@Paul Berry (DUP) 9,311 (18.4% -1.0%)
@Danny Kennedy (UUP) 7,025 (13.9% +1.6%)
Gerry Markey (Independent) 625 (1.2%)

@ Member of the Assembly

SF's most widely anticipated (and, as it turned out, only) gain. These votes, if cast in a six-seat STV election, would have given SF three seats and the SDLP, DUP and UUP one each.

2005 Local Government Election (5 May)

The Newry and Armagh constituency contains all 22 wards in Armagh and 17 of the 30 wards in Newry and Mourne (all 7 wards in the Newry Town DEA, all 5 wards in the Slieve Gullion DEA, and 5 of the 6 wards in The Fews DEA [Bessbrook, Camlough, Derrymore, Newtownhamilton and Tullyhappy])

Sinn Fein 19,449.8 (38.5%)
SDLP 12,124.8 (24.0%)
DUP 8,527.5 (16.9%)
UUP 8,142.8 (16.1%)
Independents 2,338 (4.6%)

Extrapolating from the local government elections is difficult because the Newry and Armagh constituency breaches one electoral area boundary. These votes, cast in a six seat STV election, would have elected two from SF and one each from the SDLP, DUP and UUP, with the last seat between the SDLP and SF.

2003 Assembly election (26 November; six seats)

Also available: details of each count with analysis of surplus transfers.
*Paul Berry (DUP) 8125 (17.1%)
*Conor Murphy (SF) 7595 (16.0%)
*Danny Kennedy (UUP) 7347 (15.5%)
Davy Hyland (SF) 5779 (12.2%)
Patricia O'Rawe (SF) 5478 (11.6%)
Jim Lennon (SDLP) 4116 (8.7%)
Dominic Bradley (SDLP) 4111 (8.7%)
*John Fee (SDLP) 3410 (7.2%)
William Frazer (Ind) 632 (1.3%)
Freda Donnelly (WP) 474 (1.0%)
Peter Whitcroft (Alliance) 311 (0.7%)
SF 18,852 (39.8%, +13.8%) 3 seats
SDLP 11,637 (24.6%, -10.4%) 1 seat
DUP 8,599 (18.1%, +4.8%) 1 seat
UUP 7,347 (15.5%, -2.6%) 1 seat
Ind 632 (1.3%)
Alliance 311 (0.7%, -0.7%)

Electorate 68,731
Votes cast 48,233 (70.2%); spoilt votes 855 (1.8%)
Valid votes 47,378; quota 6,769
Reaction: SF made a gain from the SDLP, who thus held only one out of six in a constituency where they still had the Westminster seat. O'Rawe ended up 599 votes ahead of Lennon, with undistributed surpluses of 578 from Kennedy and 14 from Bradley which would have narrowed the gap but not sufficiently.

Paul Berry was subsequently suspended from the DUP, and eventually resigned from the party, after media allegations about his private life, and sits as an independent (but deignated Unionist) in the Assembly.

Newry and Armagh had lost 10.27% of its electorate in the great electoral register shake-out, varying from 14.93% in the Drumgullion ward of Newry and Mourne to 4.50% in the Hamilton's Bawn ward of Armagh. 9 constituencies lost fewer voters, 8 lost more.

2001 Westminster Election (7 June; 1 seat)

*@Seamus Mallon (SDLP) 20,785 (37.4%)
@Conor Murphy (Sinn Fein) 17,209 (30.9%)
@Paul Berry (DUP) 10,795 (19.4%)
Sylvia McRoberts (UUP) 6,833 (12.3%)

Electorate: 72,466; votes cast: 56,208 (77.5%); spoilt votes: 587 (1.0%)
Valid votes: 55,621; SDLP majority 3,576

* outgoing MP
@ member of the Assembly

The narrowness of Mallon's victory surprised many observers. If this had been a six-seat Assembly election, the Nationalist parties would have won two seats each and the Unionist parties one each.

2001 Local Government Election (7 June)

SF 19161.3 (35%)
SDLP 15237.8 (28%)
UUP 10115.7 (18%)
DUP 8254.5 (15%)
NIWC 209 (0.4%)
Independents 2091 (4%)
Total valid 55069.3

The above figures in a six-seat STV election would have given two seats each to Sinn Fein and the SDLP, and one each to the UUP and the DUP.

1998 Assembly Election (25 June; six seats)

Also available: details of each count with analysis of surplus transfers.

*Seamus Mallon (SDLP) 13,582
Paul Berry (DUP) 7,214
*Danny Kennedy (UUP) 5,495
Conor Murphy (SF) 4,839
Davy Hyland (SF) 4,643
*Pat McNamee (SF) 4,570
Jim Speers (UUP) 4,324
John Fee (SDLP) 3,166
*Frank Feeley (SDLP) 2,205
Mary Allen (Ind) 1,227
Kate Fearon (WC) 1,138
William Fraser (Ulster Independence) 933
Pete Whitcroft (Alliance) 777
David Evans (NLP) 23
SDLP 18,953 votes (35.01%) 2 seats
SF 14,052 votes (25.96%) 2 seats
UUP 9,819 votes (18.14%) 1 seat
DUP 7,214 votes (13.33%) 1 seat
Independent 1,227 votes (2.27%)
WC 1,138 votes (2.10%)
Ulster Independence 933 votes (1.72%)
Alliance 777 votes (1.44%)
NLP 23 votes (0.04%)

Electorate: 71,553
Votes cast: 55,293 (77.3%); quota 7,734

* elected in 1996 Forum/talks election from Newry and Armagh

A good result for the DUP; not so good for the UUP who held this parliamentary seat from 1983 to 1986. The three SF candidates balanced their votes well but one was overtaken by the SDLP's John Fee, who finished with 7,169 votes, far ahead of his running mate Frank Feely's 5,875. Feely had been elected at all four previous regional elections.

1997 Local Government Election

Social Democratic and Labour Party 15,705.4 (34%)
Ulster Unionist Party 13,778.6 (30%)
Sinn Féin 11,408.8 (25%)
Democratic Unionist Party 3,117 (7%)
Alliance 348 (1%)
Others 1,959 (4%)
Total valid 46489.8 (65.93% of electorate)

1997 Westminster Election (one seat)

*ƒSeamus Mallon (Social Democratic and Labour Party) 22,904 (43%)
ƒDanny Kennedy (Ulster Unionist Party) 18,015 (34%)
ƒPatrick McNamee (Sinn Féin) 11,218 (21%)
Pete Whitcroft (Alliance Party of Northern Ireland) 1,015 (2%)
David Evans (Natural Law Party) 123 (0.23%)
Turnout 53,275 (75.40%)

* outgoing MP
ƒ member of the Forum

1996 Forum election (five seats)

Also available: full list of 1996 candidates

Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) 16,775 (34%) 2 seats (Seamus Mallon, Frank Feeley elected)
Sinn Féin (SF) 12,585 (26%) 2 seats (Patrick McNamee, Maria Caraher elected)
Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) 11,047 (22%) 1 seat (Danny Kennedy elected)
Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) 4,774 (10%)
Alliance Party of Northern Ireland (APNI) 1,037 (2%)
Progressive Unionist Party (PUP) 640 (1%)
United Kingdom Unionist Party (UKUP) 474 (1%)
Northern Ireland Women's Coalition (NIWC) 356 (1%)
Labour (Lab) 262 (1%)
Ulster Democratic Party (UDP) 257 (1%)
Workers Party (WP) 208 (0.42%)
Green Party 205 (0.42%)
Ulster Independence Movement (UIM) 173 (0.35%)
Conservative Party (Con) 131 (0.27%)
Democratic Partnership 114 (0.23%)
Independent Democratic Unionist Party 55 (0.11%)
Democratic Left (DL) 46 (0.09%)
Natural Law Party (NLP) 31 (0.06%)
Independent Chambers 12 (0.02%)

Electorate: 69,887; votes cast: 49,347 (70.6%); spoilt votes: 165 (0.3%); valid votes: 49,182

Both  Mallon and Feeley had been elected to the 1973 Assembly, the 1975 Convention and the 1982 Assembly, for Armagh and South Down respectively (Mallon, however, was disqualified after the 1982 election).

Results 1996-2007


DUP UUP Oth U Alliance Oth SDLP SF
2007a
13% 13% 6% 1% 6% 20% 42%
2005w 18% 14%

1% 25% 41%
2005lg 17% 16%

5% 24% 38%
2003a 18% 16% 1% 1%
25% 40%
2001w 19% 12%


37% 31%
1997lg 15% 18%

4% 28% 35%
1998a 13% 18%
1% 6% 35% 26%
1997lg 7% 30%
1% 4% 34% 25%
1997w
34%
2% 0% 43% 21%
1996f 10% 22% 3% 2% 3% 34% 26%



See also: Full 2003 results from Newry and Armagh | Full 1998 results from Newry and Armagh | The Boundary Commission's Provisional Recommendations | Boundary Commission 2003 | Jim Riley's analysis of votes and seats in the 1998 Assembly election | The constituencies

Other sites based at ARK: ORB (Online Research Bank) | CAIN (Conflict Archive on the INternet) | Northern Ireland Life and Times Survey

Your comments, please! Send an email to me at nicholas.whyte@gmail.com.

This page has been developed with the support of a project grant from the New Initiatives Fund of the Electoral Commission. However, any views expressed on this page or, in particular, other pages of this website are those of the author and not necessarily shared by The Electoral Commission.

Nicholas Whyte, 3 June 1998; last updated 9 May 2010.



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