Canterbury – NSW 2019

ALP 15.7%

Incumbent MP
Sophie Cotsis, since 2016. Previously member of the Legislative Council 2010-2016.

Inner south-west of Sydney. Canterbury covers eastern parts of the City of Canterbury and a small part of the Ashfield local government area. It covers the suburbs of Belmore, Canterbury, Campsie, Clemton Park, Earlwood and Hurlstone Park.

The district of Canterbury has sent members to the Legislative Assembly since 1859, with the exception of three elections in the 1920s. The seat has been held by the ALP continuously since 1935.

The district of Canterbury was included in the multi-member district of St George from 1920 to 1927. When the seat was restored in 1927, it was won by the ALP’s Arthur Tonge. He had been elected to a casual vacancy in the district of North Shore in 1926.

Tonge was defeated by 111 votes in 1932 by the United Australia Party’s Edward Hocking. He regained the seat in 1935, and held it until 1962, when he lost Labor endorsement and retired.

Kevin Stewart defeated Tonge for preselection in Canterbury in 1962. He served as a minister in the Labor government from 1976 to 1985, when he resigned from Parliament to take up appointment as NSW Agent-General in London.

The 1986 by-election was won by Canterbury mayor Kevin Moss. He retained the seat throughout the 1980s and 1990s, retiring at the 2003 election.

Canterbury was won in 2003 by Linda Burney, the first indigenous member of the NSW Parliament. She served as a minister in the Labor government from 2007 to 2011, and served as deputy leader of the NSW Labor Party from 2011 until 2016.

Burney resigned from Canterbury in 2016 to run (successfully) for the federal seat of Barton. The subsequent by-election was won by Labor’s Sophie Cotsis


Canterbury is a safe Labor seat.

2015 result

Linda Burney Labor 23,92950.2+1.4
Nomiky Panayiotakis Liberal 12,85927.0-9.9
Tony IssaChristian Democratic Party4,85410.2+6.0
Linda Eisler Greens 4,6089.7+0.3
Tony MaioranaNo Land Tax1,3862.9+2.9

2015 two-party-preferred result

Linda Burney Labor 27,66365.7+8.3
Nomiky Panayiotakis Liberal 14,44734.3-8.3

2016 by-election result

Sophie Cotsis Labor 27,99365.4+15.2
Branka KouroushisChristian Democrats8,39719.6+9.4
Kristian Bodell Greens 6,39314.9+5.3

2016 by-election two-candidate-preferred result

Sophie Cotsis Labor 31,86677.8
Branka KouroushisChristian Democrats9,09222.2

Booth breakdown

Booths in Canterbury have been split into three parts: east, north and west.

Labor won a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in all areas at the 2015 election. The Labor two-party-preferred vote was lowest at 63.6% in the south, and highest at 71.9% in the north. Labor polled 65.5% of the pre-poll vote, about in line with the total result.

The Christian Democratic Party came second – their vote was substantially higher in the north and south, with around 12% in each area, compared to only 6.5% in the east. The CDP substantially overperformed in the pre-poll vote.

The Greens came third, with over 13% in the east, 8.3% in the north, and just under 7% in the south and in the pre-poll vote.

Labor’s primary vote at the 2016 by-election ranged from 61.8% in the east to 67.6% in the west.

The Christian Democratic Party primary vote at the by-election ranged from 17.9% in the east to 21.4% in the west. The Greens primary vote ranged from 11% in the west to 20.3% in the east.

2015 booth breakdown

Voter groupCDP %GRN %ALP 2PP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes7.712.463.29,08619.1

2016 by-election booth breakdown

Voter groupCDP %GRN %ALP %Total votes% of votes
Other votes19.718.062.33,7718.8

Election results in Canterbury at the 2015 NSW state election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes and Christian Democratic Party primary votes.

Election results at the 2016 Canterbury by-election
Toggle between two-party-preferred votes, Christian Democratic Party primary votes and Greens primary votes.

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