The Shettleston ward of Glasgow City Council was retained by Labour in last night’s by-election with Martin Neill receiving almost 1,000 more votes than SNP candidate, Laura Doherty.
Neill took to Twitter to thank well wishers, saying that he was “absolutely delighted” to have been selected as the new councillor for the Shettleston ward. He paid tribute to his predecessor, the late George Ryan, who passed away in October aged 51 having served on the council in Glasgow’s east end since 1995.
He said: “George Ryan was a loyal and hard-working councillor for many years and is a big loss to Glasgow. I know he will be a hard act to follow but I am determined to carry on his work by standing up for the people in this community.”
The biggest surprise was UKIP’s new Scottish leader, Misty Thackery, amassing the same amount of votes as the combined total of the Liberal Democrats, the Greens and the Scottish Socialist Party to place 4th with a 2.2% increase on last year’s vote. This despite former leader, Lord Monckton telling the Sunday Herald this week: “There isn’t any UKIP in Scotland. It’s been wiped out.”
UKIP secured 129 votes against 53 for the Lib Dems, 41 for the Scottish Greens and 35 for the SSP.
The by-election managed a meagre turnout of 17.55% which some have put down to a combination of continued apathy towards council elections as well as the particularly adverse weather that brought much of the country to a standstill yesterday morning.
Margaret Curran, Labour MP for Glasgow East said: “This win is a blow to the SNP. It shows once again that people want representatives who stand up for their communities, not people who will just stand up for separation.”
The SSP were happy with their lot despite a poor result. Their candidate, Tommy Ball said on Twitter: “We always considered it [the election] unlikely to win, but we’ve re-established a presence in the east end, made connections and new members.” He also added that he was “proud” of the campaign his party ran.
The full results were as follows:
Martin Neill – Scottish Labour Party – 2026
Laura Doherty – Scottish National Party – 1086
Raymond McCrae – Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party – 224
Arthur Misty Thackery – UKIP – 129
Jamie Cocozza – Scottish Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition – 68
James Spiers – Scottish Liberal Democrats – 53
John Flanagan – No Bedroom Tax – No Welfare Cuts – 50
Alasdair Duke – Scottish Green Party – 41
Tommy Ball – Scottish Socialist Party – People Not Profit – 35
Victor Murphy – Scottish Christian Party “Proclaiming Christ’s Lordship” – 34
Charles Baillie – Britannica – 31
James Trolland – Scottish Democratic Alliance – 6
Number of ballot papers rejected – 65