Hobson is a former New Zealand parliamentary electorate. It existed from 1946 to 1978 and then from 1987 to 1996, and was represented by five Members of Parliament, four of whom represented the National Party. It is notable for returning a member of the Social Credit Party in the 1966 election, as no other candidate not aligned with either Labour or National had been elected to Parliament since 1943. With the re-drawing of boundaries in the first MMP election in 1996, the seat was absorbed into the Northland and Whangarei electorates.
The 1941 New Zealand census had been postponed due to World War II, so the 1946 electoral redistribution had to take ten years of population growth and movements into account. The North Island gained a further two electorates from the South Island due to faster population growth. The abolition of the country quota through the Electoral Amendment Act, 1945 reduced the number and increased the size of rural electorates. None of the existing electorates remained unchanged, 27 electorates were abolished, eight former electorates were re-established, and 19 electorates were created for the first time, including Hobson.The electorate was in the Northland Region, and in its original form included the following population centres: Ruawai, Dargaville, Kawakawa, Kaikohe, Kerikeri, Kaitaia, and Mangonui. The original area had previously been covered by the Bay of Islands and Kaipara electorates.
The electorate was abolished through the 1977 electoral redistribution. The area that it last covered was divided by the Bay of Islands and Kaipara electorates.
The 1987 electoral redistribution took the continued population growth in the North Island into account, and two additional general electorates were created, bringing the total number of electorates to 97. In the South Island, the shift of population to Christchurch had continued.Overall, three electorates were newly created, three electorates were recreated (including Hobson), and four electorates were abolished. All of those electorates were in the North Island. Changes in the South Island were restricted to boundary changes. These changes came into effect with the 1987 election.
The first representative of the Hobson electorate was Sidney Smith, who had previously represented the Bay of Islands electorate.Smith retired in 1960 and was succeeded by Logan Sloane in the 1960 election. In the 1960 and 1963 elections, Vernon Cracknell of the Social Credit Party contested the Hobson electorate and placed second on both occasions, pushing the Labour Party candidate into third place. The area had previously been receptive to social credit theory; the Social Credit Party had placed second in the 1954 election. In the 1966 election, Cracknell narrowly defeated Sloane.
|1946 election||Sidney Smith|
|1960 election||Logan Sloane|
|1966 election||Vernon Cracknell|
|1969 election||Logan Sloane (2nd period)|
|1975 election||Neill Austin|
|(Electorate abolished in 1978; see Bay of Islands and Kaipara)|
|1987 election||Ross Meurant|
|Social Credit||Howard Manning||5,458||29.51||+0.55|
|Social Credit||Howard Manning||4,587||28.96|
|Labour||R J Hendry||3,350||21.15|
|New Democratic||C L Horsfall||126||0.79|
|Independent||R D Greig||99||0.62|
|Social Credit||Vernon Cracknell||6,241||39.57||-8.48|
|Labour||Donald Frederick Mitchell||1,990||12.61|
|Republican||M A James||47||0.29|
|Social Credit||Vernon Cracknell||6,791||48.05||+3.70|
|Social Credit||Vernon Cracknell||6,176||44.35||+7.94|
|Social Credit||Vernon Cracknell||5,005||36.41|
|Social Credit||Cecil William Elvidge||3,152||22.85||-5.94|
|Social Credit||Cecil William Elvidge||3,697||28.79|
|Labour||May Kathleen Henderson||2,859||22.27|
|Ind. Country Party||Henry Durban Slyfield||248||1.91|
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