South Northamptonshire is a new constituency that was fought for the first time at the General Election which took place on May 6th, 2010. The boundary includes the following wards:
From Northampton Borough, the wards of East Hunsbury, West Hunsbury and Nene Valley.From the district of South Northamptonshire, the wards of Astwell, Blakesley and Cote, Blisworth and Roade, Brackley East, Brackley South, Brackley West, Brafield and Yardley, Cosgrove and Grafton, Danvers and Wardoun, Deanshanger, Grange Park, Hackleton, Kings Sutton, Kingthorn, Little Brook, Middleton Cheney, Old Stratford, Salcey, Silverstone, Steane, Tove, Towcester Brook, Towcester Mill, Washington and Whittlewood.
The main towns are Towcester and Brackley, and Silverstone - proud home of the British Grand Prix - is also within the boundary.
South Northants constituency covers a large geographic area stretching from Aynho near the M40 to Castle Ashby beyond J15 of the M1, with many rural communities, the two market towns and also three urban wards of Northampton Borough.
The Grand Union Canal runs through the constituency but otherwise there is limited tourism, with the exception of during Grand Prix week and for major races at Towcester racecourse.
Farming is an important industry - hit badly during the single payments fiasco. Diversification into non-traditional farming activities has saved some farms from closure.
The West Northants Development Corporation (WNDC) has control of planning for Northampton and Towcester and under the Labour Government's growth agenda there are plans for substantial new housing development. Demand for housing is high, and the population is growing at a higher rate than national average. Availability of affordable housing in rural villages is a particular issue.
There is significant engineering and high technology industry in the area including many businesses that support motor racing, including the Mercedes GP team, based in Brackley.
Many residents commute for work outside the constituency, and there is good scope to improve the local economy, as well as scope for improvements to the facilities available in the towns. Towcester, in particular, is undergoing a programme of regeneration.
Crime is low, although the fear of crime, particularly in the rural villages, is high. Transportation links by car are generally good, although public transport is limited and bus services tend to be poor to the more rural areas.
Provision of education is generally good. Healthcare is under pressure from inadequate funding and an ever increasing local population.
Risk of flooding is an issue in the Northampton area which was badly hit by the Easter Floods of 1998. Major flood relief schemes have been built within the Nene Valley area but residents remain concerned that any further development on the flood plain or additional mineral extraction could lead to loss of much needed water meadows which soak up excess water.
Overall, a beautiful area of rural England with good access to motorways and mainline trains.