There are 59 constituencies in the West Midlands, which includes Birmingham and surrounds, Staffordshire, Warwickshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire and Shropshire.

In January I predicted the parties would end up with…

Conservative 29
Labour 30

This really is a key battleground and Labour needs to win more seats here if Ed Miliband is to become prime minister. I’ve now revisited my January predictions but I’ve only made one revision.

Dudley North

2010 Result:
Conservative: 14274 (37%)
Labour: 14923 (38.7%)
Lib Dem: 4066 (10.5%)
BNP: 1899 (4.9%)
UKIP: 3267 (8.5%)
Others: 173 (0.4%)
MAJORITY: 649 (1.7%)

Sitting MP: Ian Austin (Lab)
Prediction: Increased Labour majority
Revised Prediction: UKIP gain

Ian Austin managed to hold off a strong Tory challenge in 2010 and should do so again if he can benefit from the decline in LibDem voters. However, polls show UKIP doing well here and they have opened a large campaigns office. UPDATE: This was UKIP’s best performance in a Labour seat and their council election performance has been very strong. A lot depends on how the Tory vote holds up. If it peals away to UKIP, they win. If it doesn’t, Ian Austin will pull through. Everyone I talk to in UKIP circles reckons this seat is almost a dead cert for them. I wouldn’t go that far, but all indications are that they have the Big Mo.

So this would mean…

Conservative 29
Labour 29

And the UK wide predictions are updated to…

Conservative 276
Labour 276
LibDem 24
SNP 42
Plaid Cymru 4
Respect 1
Green 1
Sinn Fein 5
Others 2