Constituency Profile: Wicklow

Quick facts:

  • 5-seater 
  • 5 sitting TDs: Simon Harris (FG), Andrew Doyle (FG), Anne Ferris (LAB), Stephen Donnelly (SD), Billy Timmons (REN)
  • Ministerial representation: Minister of State Simon Harris
  • Population: 141,012
  • 2011 poll topper: Andrew Doyle, Fine Gael
  • Most likely to lose: Anne Ferris, Labour; Andrew Doyle, Fine Gael
  • One to watch: Andrew Doyle, Fine Gael

Fianna Fáil has no TD for the first time since 1923, but if the local elections are any guide then they should get one seat back. Fine Gael will also get one, but their other two seats are under real threat with Billy Timmons leaving to be one of the founders of Renua. Wicklow is effectively a four-seater and a one-seater, with the latter on the other side of the mountain in Baltinglass which the Timmons family has won at every election since 1968.

The last seat in 2011 was won by Stephen Donnelly by just 112 votes from John Brady of Sinn Féin. Both men are in the field again, but this time both may be elected. The only caveat is that Donnelly is now a member of a party - the Social Democrats - rather than an Independent, and it will be interesting to see if that has an impact on his support.

In any case he will probably hoover up a lot of Anne Ferris’s 2011 vote, which will leave Labour without a seat.

Possible result:

  • 1 FG (-2)
  • 1 FF (+1)
  • 1 SF (+1)
  • 1 SD (+1)
  • 1 REN (+1)
  • 0 LAB (-1)

Ivan's take: Yates is calling the result as two for Fine Gael, one for Sinn Féin, one for Fianna Fáil and one for the Social Democrats.

  • Joe Behan - IND More Info:

    Joe Behan previously served as a TD for Wicklow between 2007 and 2011. In October 2008 he resigned from the Fianna Fáil party in protest at the 2009 Budget, and declined to join the Technical Group. Before joining politics he worked as a teacher. He stood for re-election in Wicklow at the 2011 general election, but lost his seat - receiving 6% of the first preference votes. 

  • John Brady - SF More Info:

    John Brady is a Sinn Féin councillor for Bray. John previously ran for general election in 2007 and 2011, losing out by 112 votes to Stephen Donnelly in the last general election. He was elected to Bray Town Council in 2004, and both Bray Town and Wicklow County Council in 2009.

  • Sharon Briggs - AAA-PBP More Info:

    Sharon Briggs is a People Before Profit candidate for Wicklow. Sharon previously ran for local election in 2014, but she did not win a seat. In September 2014 she was arrested at a protest against the installation of water meters in Bray. 

  • Pat Casey - FF More Info:

    Pat Casey is running in the constituency for Fianna Fáil, and is on the party ticket with Cllr Jennifer Cuffe. He is a councillor for Wicklow.

  • Avril Cronin - FG More Info:

    Cronin is from Dunlavin and has been Peter Mathews PA since the 2011 election.

  • Jennifer Cuffe - FF More Info:

    Jennifer Cuffe is contesting the constituency for Fianna Fáil alongside Councillor Pat Casey. She is currently a local councillor for Killiney-Shankill.

  • Stephen Donnelly - SD More Info:

    Stephen Donnelly (born 1975) is joint-leader of the Social Democrats and has been a TD for Wicklow since 2011. In July 2015 Stephen launched the Social Democrats party along with former Róisín Shortall and Catherine Murphy, and is a member of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform. 

  • Anna Doyle - AAA-PBP More Info:

    Anna Doyle is a People Before Profit candidate for Wicklow. Anna ran for local election in 2014, however she was not successful. She has actively campaigned against the household charge and water rates.

  • Andrew Doyle - FG More Info:

    Andrew Doyle was elected as a Fine Gael TD for Wicklow in 2011. He previously ran for election to the Dáil in 2007, losing out by 1,086 votes to Billy Timmins. In the 2011 election Andrew topped the polls in Wicklow, receiving 14.2% of first preference votes. 

  • Anne Ferris - LAB More Info:

    Anne Ferris was elected to the Dáil 2011. She was was expelled from the Labour parliamentary party in February 2015 after voting against the Government on a motion by Clare Daly, which called for abortions in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities. In May 2015 her application to rejoin the Labour ranks was agreed unanimously by the parliamentary party.

  • Simon Harris - FG More Info:

    Simon Harris was elected as a Fine Gael TD for Wicklow in 2011 and served as Minister of State at the Departments of Finance PER and Taoiseach with Special Responsibility for the OPW, Public Procurement, and International Banking. At 28 years of age, he is the youngest member of the 31st Dail. Before his election to the Dáil, he served on Wicklow County Council, having been elected in June 2009 with the highest percentage vote of any County Councillor in Ireland.

  • Katrina Hutchinson - IND More Info:

    Katrina Hutchinson is a Clinical Biochemist from Redcross who is running under the Direct Democracy Ireland banner.

  • Bob Kearns - IND More Info:

    Bob Kearns is a 74-year-old former Wicklow Town Councillor where he served for 23 years.

  • Charlie Keddy - IND More Info:

    Charlie Keddy is a serial contester of elections, and it doesn’t matter the constituency. He is a vocal opponent of water charges and the local property tax.

  • Steven Matthews - GP More Info:

    Steven Matthews is a Wicklow County Councillor. Steven was co-opted onto the Bray Town Council in 2007 to replace Deirdre De Burca, who became a senator. Matthews did not retain his seat in 2009. However he won a seat again in the 2014 local elections. He has been an electrician at Irish Rail for 25 years. 

  • Billy Timmins - REN More Info:

    Billy Timmins is Deputy Leader of Renua Ireland and has been a TD for Wicklow since 1997. In July 2013 he was expelled from the Fine Gael parliamentary party for voting against the Protection of Life During Pregnancy Bill. In September 2013 he and six other expellees formed the Reform Alliance. During his time in the Fine Gael party, he was spokesperson for Agriculture and Food, Defence and Foreign Affairs. 

Wicklow - First Preference Vote Share, General Election 2011