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Hebrides News


Political parties are scrambling to find contenders for a general election set to be held in early June.

With just three weeks before the May 10th nominations’ deadline, most parties are rushing their normal selection process.

A fast-track strategy being generally deployed is to look towards party members who have been previous vetted while sitting MPs are being asked to stand again.

Angus MacNeil is strongly tipped to be announced as the SNP’s choice for the Western Isles.  

Sources said the SNP is “minded” to stand current MPs subject to approval by the party’s national council which is expected to meet on Saturday.

Scramble to find general election candidates for Western Isles

18 April 2017

Labour is believed to be sounding out previous candidates and is also considering fielding new contenders.  Unsuccessful 2015 candidates may be asked to stand again.

The party’s Scottish leader, Kezia Dugdale said the selection process commenced this afternoon.

Ms Dugdale said: “The Labour Party is ready and has been preparing for a general election.

“We will work tirelessly to elect Jeremy Corbyn Prime Minister and deliver a Labour government."

Across the UK, the Lib Dems have 400 people waiting in the wings but not necessarily anyone in mind for the Western Isles so far.  Eight hours after the election announcement, some 5,000 new members joined the party which will fight the election on an anti-Brexit campaign.

The Western Isles Conservative Party is meeting early next week to discuss their options. Their 2015 candidate was Mark Brown who presently is standing for the party in Edinburgh council elections.  The local Tories will be keen to build on the momentum shown by an upsurge in local support in the past two elections.


Over the couple of days, the Scottish Christian Party said it would have a firmer idea if they will contest the election in the islands. No potential candidate has been confirmed.

Party official, John Cormack, who stood in 2015, said the choice of candidate was “ultimately an issue for the local branch.”


2015 Western Isles election results

Angus MacNeil, SNP -   8,662

Alasdair Morrison, Scottish Labour - 4,560

Mark Brown, Scottish Conservative - 1,215

John Cormack, Scottish Christian Party - 1,045

Ruaraidh Ferguson: Lib Dems - 456