Conservative Women and Parliament

Portcullis Logo After the 1931 general election, there were 13 Conservative women MPs.

After the 1997 general election, there were 13 Conservative women MPs.


Women on the Conservative benches in the House of Commons still remain woefully under-represented - the 2005 election returned only 17 women MPs - 9% of the Parliamentary Party. The CWO is dedicated to enabling more women to become elected as Members of Parliament.

The Conservative Party has overhauled its selection procedures and made great strides in the selection of women candidates.

The priority A-list was, when announced by David Cameron in 2005, one of a number of interventions that helped to deliver more than 80 women candidates in winnable constituencies and the CWO has been at the forefront of finding, mentoring, training and helping women to stand in public life.

In 2010, the Party had 49 Conservative women MPs, a 250% increase over the previous number of 17 women MPs. This was further increased by another 40% with 68 Conservative women MPs returned in May 2015.

There have been very real advances made within the party while David Cameron was the Party leader but there is more to be done to increase female representation at all levels of public life.

 

Number of Conservative MPs by Gender

Year Women Men % Women
1918 0 359 0
1922 1 333 0.2
1923 2 246 1
1924 3 397 1
1929 4 246 2
1931 13 446 3
1935 6 370 2
1945 1 188 1
1950 6 282 2
1951 6 306 2
1955 9 326 3
1959 11 342 3
1964 11 281 4
1966 7 235 3
1970 15 315 5
1974 (Feb) 9 287 3
1974 (Oct) 7 269 3
1979 8 331 2
1983 13 384 3
1987 17 358 5
1992 20 310 6
1997 13 152 8
2001 14 152 8
2005 17 180 9
2010 48 257 16
2015 68 262 20


Sources: British Electoral Facts: 1832-1999, Rallings and Thrasher, Parliamentary Research Services, 2000; House of Commons Library; parliament.uk

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