Why Do the Conservatives Always Do (Even) Worse in Wales?

Richard Wyn Jones*, Roger Awan-Scully, Dafydd Trystan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in book/report/conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In the 2001 general election, the Conservative Party once more performed substantially worse in Wales and Scotland than in England. Yet in contrast to Scotland, where the Tories have been in secular decline since the 1950s, Welsh Conservatives upporth as followed a much more consistent pattern relative to their English brethren. In this article we examine why the Tories always seem to do worse in Wales than in England. After exploring the historical roots of Welsh Conservatism, and tracing the evolution of support for the Tories in Wales, we specify three potential hypotheses for explaining the relative weakness of Conservatismin Wales. These hypothese-s based on socio-economic factors, Welsh 'radicalism' and perceptions of the party - are then tested using survey data from the 2001 election. Our findings sugges that Welsh anti-Conservatism is more readily explicable through political factors than socio-economicones, but they also indicate a degree of alienation from the Tories in Wales that goes beyond even the factors identified here.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBritish Elections & Parties Review
Subtitle of host publicationThe 2001 General Election
EditorsLynn G. Bennie
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9780203045855
ISBN (Print)0714653691, 9780714653693, 9780714683034
Publication statusPublished - 30 Oct 2002

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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