Sunday 14 April 2019

Suffering from Brexhaustion? Have some more maps

This is the latest instalment in my series of ill-advised mapping adventures. I really don't know why, so long after that EU referendum thing, I am posting this today but I think it must be a mixture of being on Brexopilot and the fact that nobody seems to have mapped all the ward-level EU referendum data that Martin Rosenbaum of the BBC published in February 2017. I say 'nobody' but Owen Boswarva did map Bristol at the time, so I've borrowed some of his ideas for my maps. Note: there aren't maps of everywhere - only some areas released ward-level results data. Here's a little screenshot of the folder with all the maps. Scroll down to see the big versions.

Some explanation first, to describe what you are looking at. I used the ward results file at the bottom of Martin Rosenbaum's February 2017 piece to make these maps. I used shades of yellow for remain and shades of blue for leave. In both cases I used the yellow and blue from the original BBC maps as most people are familiar with that colour scheme. I mapped all 61 local authority areas that had results for all wards (36 'Leave' areas, 25 'Remain' areas). This covers about 15% of the UK but there is a good mix of area types so it should be somewhat representative of the wider picture. Here's a little visual explainer of what the maps show.

I think the local patterns are pretty interesting

The best way to see if an area you are interested in is in the map set is just to scroll down, because I've put all the maps below, in alphabetical order. You can also get them from the Google Drive folder, which by the way you can also get to by using this shorter and easier to remember url: At the very bottom of this post I've added a few more words, should you be desperate enough to read them.

Notes: I thought I would do this when the data came out in February 2017 but other things got in the way. With the recent Brextension (sorry) I thought I might as well finish the job I didn't start back then. Why? Partly because I was curious about what the local patterns actually looked like on the ground - apparent anomalies, concentrations, strongholds, that kind of thing - but also because I wondered whether there ware many 'islands of Leave' or 'archipelagos of Remain' and that kind of thing. I think if you look at the maps you can see a bit of this. I have used local authority boundaries because that is how the vote was conducted and counted, but I did also have a look at it by constituency (and then thought better of it).

Three Nottingham constituencies (East - Ind, North - Lab, South - Lab)

I was also interested in whether there were neighbouring wards that are really different in their voting. It turns out there are a few but not that many. If you're interested in this subject and haven't already read Martin Rosenbaum's piece on these local results, do take a look - it's really good. I did do a bit of analysis using the same data at the end of 2017, but that was just a few scatterplots. I should note, as Martin Rosenbaum does in his article, that this data was obtained thanks to a major data collection exercise carried out by George Greenwood.

I really would quite like to never hear the word 'Brexit' ever again though. Not because I have warm, fuzzy feelings for the EU but because it's all we ever hear about. So I thought I'd join in the fun and do some almost entirely unnecessary local Brexit voting pattern maps, even if it is just for the historical record. Though, actually, all this might be useful to people over the next six months, even if it's only for national media vox pop location planning (on which note, the KFC on the A127 in Southend seems like a good spot). Happy Halloween etc.

One of a few spots where near things are not that related