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1973 Northern Ireland Assembly election
← 1969 28 June 1973 1975 →

All 78 seats to the Northern Ireland Assembly
40 seats were needed for a majority
  First party Second party Third party
 
Leader Brian Faulkner Gerry Fitt Ian Paisley
Party UUP SDLP DUP
Leader since 23 March 1971 21 August 1970 30 September 1971
Leader's seat South Down Belfast North North Antrim
Seats won 31[nb 1] 19 8
Seat change Decrease5 new Increase8
Popular vote 258,790 159,773 78,228
Percentage 35.8% 22.1% 10.8%
Swing Decrease12.4% new Increase7.0%

  Fourth party Fifth party Sixth party
 
Leader Oliver Napier William Craig None
Party Alliance Vanguard West Belfast
Loyalist Coalition
Leader since 1972 9 February 1972 n/a
Leader's seat Belfast East North Antrim None
Seats won 8 7 3
Seat change new new new
Popular vote 66,541 75,709 16,869
Percentage 9.2% 10.5% 2.3%
Swing new new new

  Seventh party
 
Leader Vivian Simpson
Party NI Labour
Leader since 1969
Leader's seat Belfast North
Seats won 1
Seat change Decrease1
Popular vote 18,675
Percentage 2.6%
Swing Decrease5.5%

Percentage of seats gained by each of the party

Chief Executive before election

Brian Faulkner as Prime Minister of Northern Ireland

Chief Executive after election

Brian Faulkner

The 1973 elections to the Northern Ireland Assembly took place following the publication of the British government's white paper Northern Ireland Constitutional Proposals which proposed a 78-member Northern Ireland Assembly, elected by proportional representation. The proposals for a Northern Ireland Assembly contained in the White Paper were put into effect through the Northern Ireland Assembly Act 1973 in May 1973.[1]

A cross-community coalition of the Ulster Unionist Party (UUP) under Brian Faulkner, the Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP) and the Alliance Party of Northern Ireland was agreed in November, and following the Sunningdale Agreement, a Power Sharing Executive was established from 1 January 1974. After opposition from within the UUP and the Ulster Workers Council Strike, the executive and assembly collapsed in May 1974.

Result

The election results were:

Party Votes Vote % Seats Seats %
UUP (Pro-White Paper) 182,696 25.3 24 30.8
SDLP 159,773 22.1 19 24.4
DUP 78,228 10.8 8 10.3
UUP (Anti-White Paper) 76,094 10.5 7 9.0
Vanguard 75,709 10.5 7 9.0
Alliance 66,541 9.2 8 10.3
NI Labour 18,675 2.6 1 1.3
West Belfast Loyalist Coalition 16,869 2.3 3 3.8
Independent Unionist 13,755 1.9 1 1.3
Republican Clubs 13,064 1.8 0
Nationalist 6,270 0.9 0
Independent 4,091 0.6 0
Loyalist 2,752 0.4 0
Independent pro-White Paper 2,008 0.3 0
Independent Nationalist 2,000 0.3 0
Republican Labour 1,750 0.2 0
Ulster Liberal 811 0.1 0
National Front 591 0.1 0
Ulster Constitution 202 0.0 0
Independent Loyalist 189 0.0 0
Communist Party 123 0.0 0
Total 722,151 100 78 100
All parties listed.
24 19 8 8 7 7 3 1 1
UUP (Pro) SDLP DUP APNI UUP (Anti) Vanguard

Votes summary

Popular vote
UUP (Pro-White Paper)
25.3%
SDLP
22.1%
Democratic Unionist
10.8%
UUP (Anti-White Paper)
10.5%
Vanguard
10.5%
Alliance
9.2%
NI Labour
2.6%
West Belfast Loyalist
2.3%
Independent Unionist
1.9%
Republican Clubs
1.8%
Nationalist
0.9%
Independent
0.6%
Other
1.5%

Seats summary

Parliamentary seats
UUP pro-white paper
30.8%
SDLP
24.4%
Democratic Unionist
10.3%
Alliance
10.3%
UUP anti-white paper
9.0%
Vanguard
9.0%
West Belfast Loyalist
3.8%
NI Labour
1.3%
Independent Unionist
1.3%

See also

References

Footnotes

  1. ^ 24 Ulster Unionist AMs were supportive of the White Paper, while 7 UUP AMs were against it.

Sources