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General Election: How will new constituency changes affect me in Co. Armagh?

While there are still 18 constituencies, there have been a number of geographical changes to each

Polling station local elections

Northern Ireland is set to go to the polls on July 4 after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak called a General Election from the steps of Downing Street on Wednesday afternoon.

The public in Northern Ireland will elect 18 MPs – one for each constituency – to represent the same at Parliament in Westminster.

However, one talking point this time around is that this will be the first election fought under new changes to constituency boundaries.

While there are still 18 constituencies, there have been a number of geographical changes to each.

Following three rounds of public consultation, the four Boundary Commissions for England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland published their final recommendations in June 2023, meaning some Co. Armagh voters may find themselves voting in a different area than usual.

Upper Bann

The sitting MP in Upper Bann is Carla Lockhart (DUP).

The constituency takes in a large area surrounding Craigavon, including Portadown and Lurgan.

It also stretches out to cover areas such as Banbridge, Gilford, Donaghcloney and Waringstown.

96.4% of the new Upper Bann constituency comes from the current Upper Bann boundary, while 3.6% comes from the current Newry and Armagh constituency.

This means that places like Loughgall and Ardress, which were previously in Newry and Armagh, will be in Upper Bann in the coming election.

However, there are some losses, with 7.4% of the current Upper Bann constituency moving to Lagan Valley and 2.2% going to South Down.

As a result, Aghagallon, Magheralin and the surrounding area will move to Lagan Valley, while Scarva and Loughbrickland will move to South Down. All of which were previously in Upper Bann.

Newry and Armagh

The sitting MP in Newry and Armagh is Mickey Brady (Sinn Fein), who has indicated his intention to step down.

The constituency takes in Armagh city, most of Newry, the wider South Armagh area and other towns and villages such as Tandragee, Markethill and Keady.

98.3% of the new Newry and Armagh constituency will come from the current boundaries, while 1.7% will come from South Down.

In terms of losses, 1.1% of the current constituency will move to South Down, 3.8% will move to Upper Bann and 4.1% will move to Fermanagh and South Tyrone.

As already stated this means Loughgall will leave Newry and Armagh and move to Upper Bann.

It also means Poyntzpass will be lost to South Down, while Blackwatertown and Charlemont will now be in Fermanagh and South Tyrone.

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