Ex-MP Reid to fight Argyll and Bute for Lib Dems

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie with the party's Argyll and Bute Holyrood candidate - and former Argyll and Bute MP - Alan Reid at the party's conference in Dunfermline on October 24, 2015.
Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie with the party's Argyll and Bute Holyrood candidate - and former Argyll and Bute MP - Alan Reid at the party's conference in Dunfermline on October 24, 2015.

Former MP Alan Reid will fight Argyll and Bute for the Liberal Democrats at next year’s Scottish Parliament election.

Mr Reid’s 14-year spell as the area’s Westminster MP ended when he was defeated by the SNP’s Brendan O’Hara in May’s general election.

First elected in 2001 as the successor to the popular Ray Michie, Mr Reid won two further terms as the constituency’s UK representative - and actually received more votes this year than at the last election in 2010, though his share of the vote fell in the face of the SNP landslide which swept across Scotland.

Speaking after his selection, Alan Reid said: “I am very pleased that the local Liberal Democrats have selected me to contest next May’s Holyrood election.

“Following on from the increase in our vote and clear second place at last May’s election, the Liberal Democrats are best placed to challenge the SNP and bring about the change that Argyll and Bute so badly needs.

“The SNP have been in power far too long. Our health service is being starved of funds and failing to meet its targets. Our police force is in crisis. College places have been slashed. The SNP cuts to the council budget will see the loss of many jobs and services. The roll out of superfast broadband is painfully slow.

“Argyll and Bute needs an experienced voice like myself to stand up in Holyrood and demand a better deal for this constituency. I will be campaigning on all these issues to bring about the change we so desperately need.”

At the party’s Scottish conference in Dunfermline on Saturday, Scottish Liberal Democrat Leader Willie Rennie MSP congratulated Alan Reid on his selection and said,

“Alan Reid was an outstanding MP for Argyll and Bute for fourteen years. The increase in his vote at the last election showed his popularity in the constituency. When I am in Argyll and Bute I always hear on the doorstep that he was a highly rated local MP.

“I am delighted that Alan has been selected to stand again and he will be a great asset to the Scottish Parliament and a champion for his constituents.”

The SNP has already selected sitting MSP Michael Russell - who won more than 50 per cent of the vote at the last Holyrood election in 2011 - to defend the constituency next year, while the Conservative candidate is Lochaber solicitor Donald Cameron.