Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Ontario political regions: North Wentworth

For my third analysis, I will look at what was once northern (or western?) Wentworth County, or today's northwestern suburban and rural parts of the City of Hamilton. More specifically, we'll be covering what was once the separate municipalities of Ancaster, Dundas and Flamborough. This area is represented by the riding of Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Westdale, which consists of these three municipalities plus the neighbourhood of Westdale in the former city of Hamilton.

This area is a fairly safe Conservative region, with over half of voters supporting the Tories in the 2011 election.

At confederation, this area was represented by the riding of Wentworth North. The Township of Ancaster however, was in Wentworth South. For the purpose of this analysis though, we will follow the bulk of the region.

1) Jas. McMonies (1867-1872)
2) Thos. Bain (1872-1896)

The redistribution saw these same townships transferred to Wentworth South. Ancaster would be transferred to Wentworth North and Brant.

2) Thos. Bain (1896-1900) continued
3) E.D. Smith (1900-1904)

The 1903 redistribution united all of Wentworth County, save for the city of Hamilton.

3) E.D. Smith (1904-1908) continued
4) W.O. Sealey (1908-1911) 
5) G.C. Wilson (1911-1935)
6) F.E. Lennard Jr (1935-1940)
7) E.H. Corman (1940-1945)
8) F.E. Lennard Jr (1945-1949)

The region is split when the Townships of Ancaster and Beverley (which would later be part of Flamborough) are transferred to the new Brant--Wentworth riding. That riding just has one election in which J.A. Charlton is elected. Meanwhile, F.E. Lennard Jr is re-elected in Wentworth. The region is re-united for the 1953 election.

8 or 10) F.E. Lennard Jr (1953-1962)
9 or 11) J.R. Sams (1962-1963)
10 or 12) J.B. Morrison (1963-1968)

In 1966, the region is split into three. Ancaster goes to Hamilton--Wentworth, Beverley Twp. goes to Wellington, while Dundas and Flamborough (not including Beverley Twp.) went to the new riding of Halton--Wentworth, which we will follow here:

* J.B. Morrison (1968-1972)
* W.J. Kempling (1972-1979)

In 1976, the region is re-united in the riding of Hamilton--Wentworth
* G.D. Scott (1979-1993)
* J.H. Bryden (1993-1997)

In 1996, the region is transferred to the new riding of Wentworth--Burlington which was later re-named to Ancaster--Dundas-Flamborough--Aldershot which included this region, plus the community of Aldershot in the city of Burlington. J.H. Bryden is its only MP. In 2003, the riding loses Aldershot and gains the community of Westdale, becoming Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Westdale:

* Russ Powers (2004-2006)
* D.S. Sweet (2006-present)

The Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Westdale riding will probably lose a small part in the upcoming re-distribution. The region itself has at least 100,000, and would make a good riding in of itself. This would transfer Westdale back into Hamilton, and cause Hamilton Centre to revert to its old Hamilton West moniker.

Provincial history 
This region was represented by the riding of Wentworth North provincially before1999.

* T.R. Connell (1967-1971)
* D.W. Ewen (1971-1975)
* E.G. Cunningham (1975-1984)
* F. A. Sloat (1984-1985)
* C.C. Ward (1985-1990)
* D.C. Abel (1990-1995)
* A. Skarica (1995-1999)

Skarica then represented Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Aldershot until resigning in 2000. He was replaced by Liberal Ted McMeekin who has continued to represent the region in the new riding of Ancaster--Dundas--Flamborough--Westdale.

Political geography (2008 election)
The Tories dominated most of this riding in 2008. The only exception would be in Dundas, where the NDP and the Liberals won some polls. 

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