Leeds Parliamentary Election Results
1895 - 17th July
G. W. Balfour (Conservative) 4,631
L. Jones (Liberal) 3,977
T. R. Leuty (Liberal) 3,857
J. D. Powers (Conservative) 3,147
W. L. Jackson (Conservative) 5,992
H. S. Baines (Liberal) 4,484
J. L. Walton (Liberal) 4,608
R. J. Neville (Conservative) 4,447
J. Shaw (Independent Labour) 622
H. J. Gladstone ( Liberal) 6,314
Col. J. T. North (Conservative) 6,218
Lord Salisbury’s Conservatives with 340 seats combined with the Liberal Unionists 71 secured a resounding victory over the depleted Liberals who registered just 177 seats. There was no change in Leeds but the Liberal vote was down. In Leeds East Leuty’s majority dropped from 1,131 to 710 whilst Walton’s in Leeds South dropped from 948 to 161. In Leeds West, Colonel North, the ‘Nitrate King’, was accused of ‘vulgar and debasing methods’ and flourishing ‘his moneybags’. Nevertheless, it was a close run thing there and only after two recounts was Herbert Gladstone declared the winner by just 96 votes.
The Liberals, considered the natural party of the working man, feared the influence of the emerging Labour movement in the city. An Independent Labour Party had been established in Leeds in 1892 and then joined the national ILP when it was founded in Bradford the following year. However, only one ILP candidate stood and he made little impact on the vote in Leeds South. The two issues that dominated attention was again Home Rule and voluntary schools.