Glasgow South West

2015 Result:
Conservative: 2036 (5%)
Labour: 13438 (32.8%)
Lib Dem: 406 (1%)
SNP: 23388 (57.2%)
Green: 507 (1.2%)
UKIP: 970 (2.4%)
Others: 176 (0.4%)
MAJORITY: 9950 (24.3%)

Category: Safe SNP seat

Geography: Scotland, Glasgow. Part of the Glasgow council area.

Main population centres:



Current MP
CHRIS STEPHENS (SNP) Former local government officer. Contested Glasgow South West 2010. First elected as MP for Glasgow South West in 2015.
Past Results
Con: 2084 (7%)
Lab: 19863 (62%)
LDem: 2870 (9%)
SNP: 5192 (16%)
Oth: 1772 (6%)
MAJ: 14671 (46%)
Con: 1786 (6%)
Lab: 18653 (60%)
LDem: 3593 (12%)
SNP: 4757 (15%)
Oth: 2188 (7%)
MAJ: 13896 (45%)
Con: 1417 (6%)
Lab: 15497 (61%)
LDem: 1612 (6%)
SNP: 4229 (17%)
Oth: 2522 (10%)
MAJ: 11268 (45%)
Con: 1979 (6%)
Lab: 19653 (60%)
LDem: 1137 (3%)
SNP: 5862 (18%)
Oth: 4171 (13%)
MAJ: 13791 (42%)

2015 Candidates
GORDON MCCASKILL (Conservative) Former taxi driver. East Renfrewshire councillor. Contested Paisley and Renfrewshire South 2010.
IAN DAVIDSON (Labour) Born 1950, Jedburgh. Community services manager. MP for Glasgow Govan 1992 to 2015. Was the chair of the Labour campaign against entering the Euro before it was ruled out in 2003.
ISABEL NELSON (Liberal Democrat) Contested Glasgow South West 2010.
SARAH HEMY (UKIP) Retail manager.
SEAN TEMPLETON (Green) Educated at Strathclyde University. Advocate.
CHRIS STEPHENS (SNP) Local government officer. Contested Glasgow South West 2010.
BILL BONNAR (Scottish Socialist Party) Educated at Stirling University. Contested Glasgow Anniesland 1997, Rutherglen and Hamilton West 2001, 2005.
Comments - 93 Responses on “Glasgow South West”
  1. I remember Nick Palmer posting on Broxtowe quite a bit on the old site while still the MP, and he’s very active online in various places I think. Also, Stephen Pound posted a few times on the old site on his own Ealing North.

  2. Also Sir Irvine Patnick posted once, a couple of years before he died.

    I wonder how many other former posters are now deceased…Sir Irvine and the Mad Cow Girl are the only two I can recall.

  3. Yes I was going to mention him as well.

    I don’t know about deceased former posters, but like many others I think I’ve lost count of the number of serving and ex-councillors on here- Even quite a few of the established regulars have stood for election at a local level quite a few times. I belong to the band of posters who have never ever stood for election or been active in a party, for example campaigning and leafleting like Mr Nameless, and he’s younger than me.

  4. What ever became of Bob Gillespie, Labours candidate in the 1988 Glasgow Govan by election and father of Primal Screams Bobby Gillespie?

  5. Ian Davidson of course first entered Parliament in 1992 for Glasgow Govan, defeating the then deputy leader of the SNP Jim Sillars, after the latter had won the 1988 by-election.

  6. Straw Poll I carried out 15-April


  7. close PAUL

  8. There is a big increase in SNP (+10) / decrease in Lab (-8) from the first Ashcroft poll in January.

    I wonder if in the first poll there were Yes voters who still intended to vote Labour, thinking that the SNP couldn’t win. Then the first set of Ashcroft polls come out, with great publicity, showing that the SNP were leading in most of the Glasgow seats.

    Unfortunately, Ashcroft doesn’t ask people how they voted in the referendum, so I can’t really test this theory. But the SNP score now is closer to what the Yes score was in the referendum (~53% across Glasgow).

  9. Either we’re seeing something utterly seismic in Scotland, way beyond the SNP’s wildest dreams, or some of these polls are overstating the SNP share. It’s really hard to judge.

    For one, the SNP have undoubtedly brought some non voters on board, and that will boost turnout. But even so, we’re looking at 25% swings here. Crazy.

    There’s quite a febrile atmosphere, and I do wonder if we’ll see the Scottish Labour shy voter rear its head. It could make the difference between saving 10 seats and 20.

  10. I think Labour would now be very pleasantly surprised to get close to 20 seats. What the recent Ashcroft polls do show, whether they tend to favour one party or another in general, is that there has likely been some further movement from Labour to the SNP in recent weeks.

  11. Reading posts on this seat from 6 months ago. Those who were mocked turned out to be right. I would still be astounded if Ian Davidson lost this seat though.

  12. Hard to say someone who is 21% behind is anything other than a clear second favourite.

  13. It’s really hard to predict what will happen.

    The talk of swings is all very well, but it’s actually a total polarisation of the vote.

    SNP have always benefitted from a lot of voters who didn’t support independence. Those voters will likely be more reluctant now to support them. At the same time however, a lot of Indy supporters who previously voted for other parties are aligning fully behind the SNP so it’s a total polarisation of the vote with a Unionist vote too split to be an effective opposition.

    I’ve been struggling to comprehend the SNP winning as many seats as predicted but poll after poll keeps pointing that way.

    I definitely think there are “shy” unionist voters out there, the ill feeling post Indy Ref likely responsible for that but can they align enough tactically to stem the tide? I’m beginning to doubt it!

    Another thread mentioned you can get 7-1 on the Tories being Scotland’s second biggest party in terms of MPs after the election. The three borders seats might be enough to secure that for them so it might be worth a couple of quid.

    I still think Labour will do better than predicted in Scotland, but am doing so with less and less confidence.

  14. Give over everybody…Labour will win at least 30 seats in Scotland…one only has to see Milliband’s smugness over the past few days….his canvass returns are telling him that he can win this much in Scotland, but he can’t say it in public

  15. Labour Hold

  16. Am I overestimating the swing back to Labour between now and next May?

    Glasgow Pollok (5 May 2016)

    Humza Yousaf (SNP) 11887
    *Johann Lamont (Lab) 9232
    Tommy Sheridan (Solidarity) 3323
    Nigel Parker-Brown (Con) 1170
    Emma watts (Lib Dem) 489

    SNP Maj 2655

    SNP Gain from Lab

  17. A few thoughts.

    Firstly, Sheridan won’t stand, and is pretty much irrelevant politically now. He’ll pick up a few votes on the list, but that’s all.

    Secondly, I don’t really see why there will be a swing back to Labour between now and 2016. There might be a short term boost if Corbyn does win the leadership, but the SNP have looked much more effective at opposing the Tories since May than Labour have. If anything, what polling there is suggests that the SNP will do even better at Holyrood than they did at Westminster.

    Thirdly, I’d expect a significant boost in the turnout compared to 2011.

    I’d suggest something like

    SNP 16000
    Labour 10500
    Tories 1400
    Lib Dems 3

  18. What would Johann Lamont’s chances of retaining her Holyrood Constituency of Glasgow Pollok that almost has the same boundaries as Glasgow South West against Glasgow List SNP MSP Humza Yousaf?

    Holyrood (May 2011)

    Labour Johann Lamont 10,875 47.5 -5.2%
    SNP Chris Stephens 10,252 44.7 +11.9%
    Conservative Andrew Morrison 1,298 5.7 -1.3%
    Liberal Democrats Isabel Nelson 490 2.1 -4.9%

    Majority 623 2.7
    Turnout 22,915 39

    Labour Hold

    Westminster (May 2015)

    SNP Chris Stephens 23,388 57.2 +40.8%
    Labour Co-op Ian Davidson 13,438 32.8 -29.7%
    Conservative Gordon McCaskill 2,036 5.0 -1.6%
    UKIP Sarah Hemy 970 2.4 N/A
    Scottish Green Sean Templeton[8] 507 1.2 N/A
    Liberal Democrat Isabel Nelson[9] 406 1.0 -8.0
    Scottish Socialist Bill Bonnar 176 0.4 N/A

    Majority 9,950 24.3%
    Turnout 40,921 61.8 +7.2

    SNP gain from Labour Co-op Swing 35.2

  19. Unfortunately I don’t think she’ll be able to hold onto Pollok, which would be a shame (I’m no Labour voter but I’m a big fan of Johann…particularly her new found sassyness on Twitter). Hopefully she’ll be ranked highly, if not the top, of the Labour list in Glasgow.

  20. At the last Holyrood election it was LAB policy for constituency MSPs not to go on the list (hence lots lost their seats). Has that changed now?

  21. yes, they can now stand on both sections. Except for Eleine Murray (Dumfriesshire), all other constituency MSPs not retiring are on the regional lists shortlists announced last week.

  22. All very sensible, though it does of course represent an admission that they might not win many constituencies!

  23. “Ballots will open on Monday 4 January and close on Monday 1 February, with results expected on the weekend of 5th-7th February.”

  24. How likely are the incumbent constituency Labour MSP’s to gain the top positions on the lists?

    If you get one of the top 4 seats on a regional seat you are certain to remain an MSP. If Labour do as badly in the constituencies as they did last may you could be elected on the 5th or 6th position.

    Paul Martin, James Kelly, Johann Lamont and Patricia Fergusson.

    West of Scotland
    Jacqui Baillie and Ken Macintosh (Hugh Hendry and Duncan McNeil are retiring).

  25. I think Labour should get 5 list MSPs next year in Glasgow on 26-30% of the list vote. They narrowly beat the SNP in Blantyre last week so their vote seems to have largely bottomed out now.

    Most likely ranking (with gender rules in mind) I’m guessing

    Anas Sarwar
    Johann Lamont
    James Kelly
    Patricia Ferguson
    Paul Martin

    If Labour does a bit better they could get a 6th MSP such as Anne McTaggart or Pauline McNeill

  26. Blantyre is Labour’s strongest area in the Rutherglen Holyrood constituency.

    I can’t see all the other parties (Greens, Tories, Socialists, Lib Dems, UKIP) polling over 25% on the Glasgow list. Therefore a Labour vote of 25 to 30% in Glasgow would give the SNP at least 45 to 50%.

    I think Labour will find their Glasgow Region constituency seats hardest to defend in the following order; Maryhill & Springburn, Pollok, Provan and Rutherglen.

  27. Here is my expectations of the likely 2016 Outcome in Holyrood Constituencies not held by the SNP.

    I have Labour with a probability of defeat in every seat that they hold. However, collectively Labour should hold 1 or 2 constituency seats.

    In Ayr and Galloway & West Dumfries, even if the Conservative vote were to rise it is not likely to be enough to compensate for the numbers of Labour voters switching to the SNP.

    Ayr – Likely SNP Gain from Con.
    Coatbridge & Chryston – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Cowdenbeith – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Dumbarton – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Dumfriesshire – Likely SNP Gain from Lab/ remote chance of Labour hold or Conservative Gain.
    East Lothian – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Eastwood – Likely SNP Gain from Lab/ remote chance of Labour hold or Conservative Gain.
    Edinburgh Northern & Leith – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Ettrick, Roxburgh & Berwickshire – Almost Certain Con Hold.
    Galloway & West Dumfries – Likely SNP Gain from Con.
    Glasgow Maryhill & Springburn – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Glasgow Pollok – Almost Certain SNP Gain from Lab
    Glasgow Provan – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Greenock & Inverclyde – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Motherwell & Wishaw – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Renfrewshire South – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Rutherglen – Likely SNP Gain from Lab
    Orkney – Close Lib Dem/ SNP result. Lib Dems marginal favourites.
    Shetland – Likely Lib Dem Hold
    Uddingston & Bellshill – Likely SNP Gain from Lab

  28. Largely agree with you with the exception of Shetland and Dumfriesshire.

    What makes you think that Shetland is a ‘likely’ Lib Dem hold? Large rises in turnout makes Lib Dem vote share in 2011 for the Orkney and Shetland constituencies irrelevant. Look at the results for the Orkney and Shetland constituency at May: the Liberal Democrats held onto the constituency with a majority of just 3.6%.

    Shetland had a Yes vote of 36.3% over Orkney’s 32.8%: the Lib Dems came close to losing in the constituency, with the SNP achieving 37.8% of the vote in the Orkney and Shetland constituency in May… So you’re assuming that the Lib Dems won in Shetland ?

    If we apply an equal swing for Orkney and Shetland in the SNP’s vote over the Yes vote in 2014 that would give the SNP an approximate vote share of 41% in Shetland, over Orkney’s 35%… So you’re suggesting that the Lib Dems had a similar vote share in the Orkney and Shetland constituencies in 2011 (despite a SUBSTANTIAL difference in turnout in the region between 2011 and 2015 – of around 15%)…?

    I’m highly doubtful of this when the constituencies delivered similar results in 2003 (with the Lib Dems actually achieving a higher vote share in Orkney over Shetland in 1999). The context of 2011 and 2016 are completely different – where in 2011 Orkney and Shetland were seen as solid Lib Dem ground, now they are contested marginally with the SNP. At the May I’d say the Lib Dems performed similarly in both constituencies, with the SNP doing better in Shetland and worse in Orkney (which can be supported by the fact that Shetland had a higher Yes vote at 2014).

    As for Dumfriesshire: given that the rural parts of the constituency voted safely Conservative in 2015 (thus allowing the Conservatives to retain their hold on the DCT constituency in May), what makes you think Labour has an equal chance here to the Conservatives? I’d suggest that while the SNP might have an upper hand in the area the Conservatives are fairly well placed to gain the constituency…

  29. I assume that Ian Davidson may have been kicking himself by standing in Berwickshire rather than here in his old constituency. He may have had a better chance than a new candidate given the SNP majority fell from 5 figures to 40.

  30. Due to the sad death of Labour councillor Alistair Watson, there is to be a by election in Cardonald in Thursday the 7th of September. The ward is right in the centre of the SNP’s 2nd most marginal Scottish Constituency of Glasgow South West (majority 40) with Greater Pollok Ward to the South and Govan Ward to the North.

    The SNP marginally won the plurality of the first preference vote –

    SNP 4014 (43.3%)
    Lab 3501 (37.8%)
    Con 1082 (11.7%)

    I would imagine that Labour will present themselves as the anti-establishment party focusing their campaign at the minority Conservative government at Westminster and the minority SNP government/ administrations at Holyrood and Glasgow City Chambers.

    The SNP on the other hand will see this as an opportunity to re-establish themselves as the progressive party in Scotland.

    As the stakes are really high in this by election and the way its result will be covered by the Scottish media, I would expect large numbers of SNP and Labour activists to descend on this ward prior to and on polling day.

    The first preference Conservative vote is significantly greater than the SNP lead in the ward so much will depend on how the Conservatives 2nd preference votes go.

  31. Can someone explain how by-elections work in STV systems?

  32. Councillors are elected in 3 or 4 member wards but by elections are normally won by the party with a large plurality of the vote.

    In the past you would have an SNP councillor passing away in a ward in Glasgow that was 3 Lab and 1 SNP and Labour would win the by election increasing their representation from 75% to 100% so STV by elections are not really PR.

  33. Its more av in s by election

  34. By-elections in Cardonald (Glasgow South West) and Fortissat (Airdrie & Shotts) today: this should provide a good indication as to how the vote is going in the Labour-SNP marginals.

  35. Labour has just won in Fortissat

  36. Labour came first in Cardonald and won the seat.

    Lab 48.6% (+10.8)
    SNP 36.7% (-6.6)
    Con 10.3% (-1.4)
    Grn 2.7% (+0.2)
    LD 1.5% (-0.5)
    Lbt 0.2% (New)

  37. From June, it seems like the SNP have faced a difficult pincer movement: Labour on their left and the Tories on their right. It’s hard to see what they can do in response.

  38. (Sorry, the SNP were beaten into third place in FORTISSAT, not Cardonald. They weren’t that far away from fourth place…)

  39. Yes, they came third behind the Labour Party and Unionist Party in an area which voted for independence!

  40. Good thing for the SNP that by-elections don’t tell us much in themselves.

  41. Actually, they tell us quite a lot: it would suggest that the SNP would be on track to lose a number of constituencies from Scottish Labour in the event of another election.

  42. Considering that Scottish Labour doesn’t currently have a leader, the party will perhaps be more encouraged still at these results. Maybe they should just leave the position permanently vacant? (Only kidding.)

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