North Shore – NSW 2019

LIB 21.2% vs GRN

Incumbent MP
Felicity Wilson, since 2017.

Lower North Shore of Sydney. The seat of North Shore covers a majority of the City of North Sydney and all of Mosman Council. Suburbs include North Sydney, Wollstonecraft, McMahons Point, Kirribilli, Cremorne and Mosman.

The district of North Shore has existed since 1981. A previous incarnation was a five-member district from 1920 to 1927. The current seat of North Shore was held by independents from 1981 to 1991, and by the Liberal Party since 1991.

When North Shore was created in 1981, it covered a smaller area than the current seat, mainly covering the City of North Sydney. It replaced the previous seat named Kirribilli, which had been won by the Liberal Party at every election since it was created in 1962. The seat of Mosman covered the Mosman part of the current seat, as well as covering western parts of Manly.

Bruce McDonald had held the seat of Kirribilli since 1976, when he had defeated the sitting Liberal MP John Waddy for preselection, and then defeated him at the election, when Waddy attempted to win as an independent. McDonald became deputy leader of the Liberal Party in 1978, and became Leader of the Opposition four months before the 1981 election.

At the 1981 election, McDonald contested the renamed seat of North Shore, as well as leading the conservative Coalition into the election. He was challenged by the independent Mayor of North Sydney, Ted Mack, and lost the seat. McDonald polled over 41% of the primary vote, while Mack only outpolled the ALP by 127 votes on primary votes. After outpolling the ALP, Mack overtook McDonald on Labor preferences. McDonald also lost the statewide election in a landslide.

Mack was re-elected to North Shore in 1984 and 1988. He retired later in 1988, only two days before he would qualify for a parliamentary pension as a statement against the excesses of modern politics. Mack returned to politics in 1990, winning the federal seat of North Sydney off the Liberal Party. He held it for two terms before again retiring before qualifying for a pension.

The 1988 by-election was won by independent North Sydney councillor Robyn Read.

Prior to the 1991 election, the neighbouring seat of Mosman was abolished, with the Mosman area largely absorbed by North Shore. Mosman had always been dominated by the Liberal Party and its predecessors, except for two terms in the 1940s when it was won by an independent.

Phillip Smiles had served as Member for Mosman since 1984. He challenged Read in the seat of North Shore in 1991, and won the seat. He served as Assistant Treasurer from 1991 to 1992. He was convicted of tax evasion in 1993, and was forced to resign from Parliament.

The 1994 by-election was won by Liberal candidate Jillian Skinner. She was challenged by Robyn Read, but won with a larger margin than Smiles had in 1991.

Skinner won re-election with relative ease at the 1995, 1999, 2003, 2007 and 2011 elections. The ALP came second in 1995, 1999 and 2003, but in 2007 the Greens overtook Labor. Skinner still held a margin of almost 16%.

Skinner was elected deputy leader of the Liberal Party following the 2007 election. She has served as Minister for Health since the 2011 election. Skinner resigned as Liberal deputy leader in April 2014, following the resignation of Barry O’Farrell as Premier and party leader.

Skinner was re-elected at the 2015 election. She was dropped from the ministry in January 2017 and resigned from parliament soon after.

The 2017 by-election was won by Liberal candidate Felicity Wilson.


  • Colin Furphy (Keep Sydney Open)
  • Toby Pettigrew (Greens)
  • Olivia Bouchier (Animal Justice)
  • Sam Gunning (Liberal Democrats)
  • Carolyn Corrigan (Independent)
  • Michael Lester (Labor)
  • Felicity Wilson (Liberal)
  • Victoria Boast (Sustainable Australia)
  • Jeffrey Grimshaw (Conservatives)
  • Assessment
    North Shore is a safe Liberal seat.

    2015 result

    Jillian Skinner Liberal 26,85358.1-9.3
    Arthur Chesterfield-Evans Greens 6,75514.6-5.6
    James Wheeldon Labor 6,37813.8+3.0
    Stephen RuffIndependent4,65510.1+10.1
    Pip ViceCyclists8381.8+1.8
    Moya KerteszNo Land Tax3900.8+0.8
    Giuseppe RotirotiChristian Democrats3860.8-0.9

    2015 two-candidate-preferred result

    Jillian Skinner Liberal 28,61371.2-2.1
    Arthur Chesterfield-Evans Greens 11,57928.8+2.1

    2015 two-party-preferred result

    Jillian Skinner Liberal 28,87471.9-8.5
    James Wheeldon Labor 11,27828.1+8.5

    2017 by-election result

    Felicity Wilson Liberal 18,08142.8-15.3
    Carolyn CorriganIndependent10,12223.9+23.9
    Justin Alick Greens 6,72315.9+1.3
    Ian MuttonIndependent3,4568.2+8.2
    Harry FineIndependent1,1822.8+2.8
    Brian Beaumont OwlesVoluntary Euthanasia9982.4+2.4
    Ila LessingAnimal Justice9112.2+2.2
    Silvana NileChristian Democrats8191.9+1.1

    2017 by-election two-candidate-preferred result

    Felicity Wilson Liberal 19,73354.7
    Carolyn CorriganIndependent16,33445.3

    Booth breakdown

    Booths in North Shore have been split into three parts: central, east and west. The ‘east’ area aligns with the Mosman council area.

    The Liberal Party won a majority of the two-candidate-preferred vote (against the Greens) at the 2015 election, ranging from 65.2% in the west to 76.6% in the east. The Labor primary vote ranged from 10% in the east to 16.8% in the west.

    The 2017 by-election was closer, with the Liberal Party winning a majority of the two-candidate-preferred vote (against independent Carolyn Corrigan), ranging from 50.3% in the centre to 53.2% in the west. The Greens primary vote ranged from 14.1% in the east to 20.6% in the west.

    2015 booth breakdown

    Voter groupALP prim %LIB 2CP %Total votes% of votes
    Other votes15.171.412,48227.0

    2017 by-election booth breakdown

    Voter groupGRN prim %LIB 2CP %Total votes% of votes
    Other votes15.466.66,52015.4

    Election results in North Shore at the 2015 state election
    Toggle between two-candidate-preferred (Liberal vs Greens) votes and Labor primary votes.

    Election results at the 2017 North Shore by-election
    Toggle between two-candidate-preferred (Liberal vs independent) votes and Greens primary votes.

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    1. But who’ll challenge her Mick. Problem for any Independent is that there are 2 LCA areas that are very different in the one seat (North Sydney/Mosman) and that’ll play solidly to her hand.

    2. Felicity Wilson is on very borrowed time. She won her pre-selection over Tim James by 1 vote and is chew up valuable resources in her campaigns. This election will show her long-term feasibility for the seat.

      She was parachuted into the seat by Trent Zimmerman and Michael Photios as one of their favourite foot soldiers and still managed to get up despite falsifying a Stat Dec for her election application.

      If she even goes close to losing the seat this time around, I think she would lose pre-selection next time around.


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