2022 Wakefield by-election

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Event.png 2022 Wakefield by-election (UK/By-election) Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Rachel Reeves Wakefield.jpg
Rachel Reeves on the stump at Wakefield
Date23 June 2022
DescriptionHeld on 23 June 2022, triggered by the resignation of Tory MP Imran Ahmad Khan following a criminal conviction for child sexual assault

The 2022 Wakefield by-election was held on 23 June 2022. It was triggered by the resignation, on 3 May 2022, of Member of Parliament (MP) Imran Ahmad Khan, who was elected as a Conservative at the UK/2019 General Election and resigned following a criminal conviction for child sexual assault.[1]

The by-election was won by Simon Lightwood of the Labour Party with a majority of 4,925 votes, or 17.9 percentage points, with a swing of 12.7% from the Conservatives towards Labour.[2]

It was held on the same day as the 2022 Tiverton and Honiton by-election in Devon, which the Conservatives lost to the Liberal Democrats.[3]



Nadeem Ahmed, a Conservative councillor for Wakefield South ward and Leader of the Wakefield Conservative group from 2014 to 2021 has been selected as Conservative Party candidate.


Calder Valley 2013 was the fifth.[4]

The Wakefield Labour CLP executive resigned over the selection process.[5] The Labour Party selected Simon Lightwood, former staffer of the anti-Brexit, anti-Corbyn Mary Creagh. He was selected on 15 May on a turnout of just 23% of local party members. The local party reportedly walked out of the meeting.[6][7]

Simon Lightwood has presented himself as a local candidate.[8] Guido Fawkes reported that this is his fifth attempt to be elected MP.[9]

Yorkshire Party

The Yorkshire Party selected the Crigglestone-based, former Conservative Councillor David Herdson as their candidate.

Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats selected Jamie Needle as their candidate. Needle previously contested the constituency in 2019.

Workers Party

In May 2022, George Galloway, who ran in the 2021 Batley and Spen by-election, suggested he may run in this by-election for the Workers Party of Britain, but eventually decided not to.

Britain First

This was the first by-election candidate for Britain First since they re-registered as a political party in September 2021.

Visit of Rachel Reeves

On 28 May 2022, following a visit by Labour Shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves, Carl Doran tweeted:

5 people this week.

That's the entire Labour activist turnout for a visit by the *Shadow Chancellor* to a forthcoming "red wall" by-election target seat.

The only electoral target for the entire Labour Party at the moment.

5 people.

They can't afford rosettes either, apparently.[10]

Cautionary tweet

Caution needed over a Tory ‘stay at home’ Wakefield result. Labour only secured 13,000 votes in Wakefield - The lowest Labour vote in there since 1931 and down from 18,000 votes in 2019 and 23,000 in 2017.[11]

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