Airdrie & Shotts

2015 Result:
Conservative: 3389 (7.7%)
Labour: 15108 (34.1%)
Lib Dem: 678 (1.5%)
SNP: 23887 (53.9%)
UKIP: 1088 (2.5%)
Independent: 136 (0.3%)
MAJORITY: 8779 (19.8%)

Category: Semi-marginal SNP seat

Geography: Scotland, Central Scotland. Part of North Lanarkshire council area.

Main population centres: Airdrie, Shotts, Newmains, Chapelhall, Caldercruix.

Profile: A solid working class constituency to the East of Glasgow. Both Airdrie and Shotts are have suffered the effects of the decline of traditional industries such as steel. The M8 runs through the centre of the constituency, dividing Airdrie to the North from Shotts and the surrounding villages to the South. The constituency includes HMP Shotts, one of the largest prisons in Scotland.

Politics: Previously a safe Labour seat, won by the SNP in 2015. Airdrie is mainly protestant while its neighbour, Coatbridge, is a largely Catholic and religion remains a factor in local politics here - the 1994 by-election in Monklands East (the predecessor seat) following the death of Labour leader John Smith was dominated by accusations of sectarian bias by the (overwhelmingly Catholic) Labour group on Monklands council..


Current MP
NEIL GRAY (SNP) Born Orkney. Educated at Stirling University. Former Parliamentary office manager. First elected as MP for Airdrie & Shotts in 2015.
Past Results
2010
Con: 3133 (9%)
Lab: 20849 (58%)
LDem: 2898 (8%)
SNP: 8441 (24%)
Oth: 528 (1%)
MAJ: 12408 (35%)
2005
Con: 3271 (10%)
Lab: 19568 (59%)
LDem: 3792 (11%)
SNP: 5484 (17%)
Oth: 1043 (3%)
MAJ: 14084 (42%)
2001*
Con: 1960 (6%)
Lab: 18478 (58%)
LDem: 2376 (7%)
SNP: 6138 (19%)
Oth: 2784 (9%)
MAJ: 12340 (39%)
1997
Con: 3660 (9%)
Lab: 25460 (62%)
LDem: 1719 (4%)
SNP: 10048 (24%)
Oth: 294 (1%)
MAJ: 15412 (37%)

2015 Candidates
ERIC HOLFORD (Conservative)
PAMELA NASH (Labour) Born 1984, Airdrie. Educated at St Margarets High School and Glasgow University. Parliamentary assistant to John Reid. MP for Airdrie and Shotts 2010 to 2015. Was the youngest Member of Parliament elected at the 2010 general election.
JOHN LOVE (Liberal Democrat) Contested Airdrie and Shotts 2010.
MATT WILLIAMS (UKIP)
NEIL GRAY (SNP) Born Orkney. Educated at Stirling University. Parliamentary office manager.
DERYCK BEAUMONT (Independent)
Links
Comments - 57 Responses on “Airdrie & Shotts”
  1. Neil Gray MP was today selected for Scottish Parliament 2021 election. By SNP internal rule, he needs to resign as MP to time the Westminster by-election on the same day of Holyrood elections.

  2. Nice to talk about something on this side of the Atlantic for a change. I’m guessing this rule must have come in quite recently as Alex Salmond sat in both chambers between 2015 and 2016.

    Does anyone know whether Douglas Ross intends to double-job, by the way? Surely the Tories do not want a by-election in Moray, it has the potential to be one of a heaviest defeats for a governing party in British political history.

  3. “Nice to talk about something on this side of the Atlantic for a change. I’m guessing this rule must have come in quite recently as Alex Salmond sat in both chambers between 2015 and 2016.”

    They changed the rule this summer.
    The rule change was a bit controversial because Joanna Cherry (MP for Edinburgh South-West) was expected to apply for selection in Edinburgh Central (currently held by Ruth Davidson who will step down). After the rule change, she pulled out. Angus Robertson (favored by Sturgeon) was also in the running for EdCentral (and was selected this week)

  4. Oh yes, I remember that saga. Some wag referred to the dispute as “Cherrymandering”.

  5. SNP candidate for the by-election is Anum Qaisar Javed

  6. Obviously the SNP are going to win this one, which I presume will take place on the same day as the Holyrood vote.

    Ian Blackford mentioned this in PMQs yesterday – specifically he compared this seat to Moray, where Douglas Ross intends to continue as MP while also leading his party in Edinburgh. I was fairly certain there were rules brought in about this under the coalition government to prevent double-jobbing, which most notably forced Gerry Adams to give up his parliamentary seat.

    There’s been plenty of other precedent. Huw Irranca-Davis (Labour, Ogmore) gave up his Westminster seat when running for the Senedd; John Lamont (Conservative, Berwickshire) gave up his Holyrood seat upon election to Westminster. The only other figure I can think of in recent years who has held seats in multiple parliaments is Alex Salmond, who remained an MSP after election to the Westminster seat of Gordon in 2015.

  7. Dr Jon Stanley is contesting the by-election for the Scottish Unionist Party.

    I recall they polled 5% here in 2001 and in the Speaker’s seat.

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