Leeds Parliamentary Election Results

1974 - 10 October

D. W. Healey (Labour) 24,745
J. W. Dawson (Conservative) 12,434
S. Marsh (Liberal) 6,970
N. Russell (People) 327

North East
Sir K. Joseph (Conservative) 18,749
J. Gunnell (Labour) 13,121
C. Greenfeld (Liberal) 6,737

North West
Sir D. Kaberry (Conservative) 19,243
L. C. K. Fenwick (Labour) 15,216
D. Rolfe (Liberal) 8,663

M. Rees (Labour) 21,653
T. Stow (Conservative) 6,388
J. Adams (Liberal) 5,563

South East
S. Cohen (Labour) 17,160
M. Sexton (Conservative) 6,144
M. Clay (Liberal) 4,429
W. Innes (Communist) 317

J. Dean (Labour) 20,669
M. Meadowcroft (Liberal) 13,062
D. Hall (Conservative) 7,907

It was inevitable that Harold Wilson would call an election to rectify the electoral stalemate of a hung Parliament. At least Wilson could claim Labour had settled the miners’ dispute and though there was still a problem of high inflation, the party appeared to offer greater stability. Labour was successful winning 319 seats to the Conservatives 277 giving the party an overall majority albeit one of only 3. Both the Conservatives and the Liberals saw their share of the vote fall.

Once again there was no change but Liberal candidates stood in every constituency and once again in Leeds West came second where again the highest turnout of 68.9% was recorded. In the city generally there was a turnout of 64.4%, down by 10% on February’s figure. Joseph, speaking in Leeds North East as shadow Home Secretary, raised the possibility of ‘re-introducing capital punishment for terrorists’. It should be remembered that twelve people had been killed on the M62 near Leeds by a Provisional IRA bomb in February that year.