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Double delight for Dumfries and Galloway Tories

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By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale
Double delight for Dumfries and Galloway Tories

IT WAS double delight for the Scottish Conservatives early this morning as Tories Oliver Mundell and Finlay Carson came out on top. 

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED . . . Oliver Mundell, MSP,  and his wife Catherine on the stage after his election

Son of Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell, Oliver Mundell, comfortably clinched the most votes to win the Dumfriesshire seat with 13,536 votes, gaining the seat from former Labour MSP Elaine Murray, who came in third with 9,151 votes.

Mr Mundell was closely followed by SNP candidate Joan McAlpine, a previous South of Scotland MSP, whose votes tallied 12,306.

In fourth – and last – place was Lib Dem candidate Richard Brodie, who was not present at the count, with just 1267 votes.

The Easterbrook Hall, home of the Dumfries and Galloway count, rang with applause as Mr Mundell Jr was announced the winner.

A thrilled Mr Mundell, who was joined on stage by wife Catherine, began his speech by thanking outgoing MSP Elaine Murray for her years of dedicated hard work.

Speaking to DNG24, he said: “It’s just unexplainable how I feel. I am very proud to be able to represent Dumfriesshire and it’s a real testament to the strength of the Scottish Conservatives that we have been able to take this seat.”

Dr Murray, who has served as an MSP since the formation of the Scottish Government, was gracious in her defeat.

She thanked all her staff and remarked how truly sad she was to see them lose their jobs. She also thanked family, voters and all those who helped her campaign as well as congratulating Mr Mundell.

Speaking to DNG24 after the vote, Ms McAlpine was upbeat and full of support for her party.

She said: “I feel that the SNP have made real progress to where we were in 2011. We have gone from 8300 votes to 12,306 – from a poor third position to a strong second.”

Ms McAlpine was hopeful to win back her list MSP seat and continue to represent the area.

Meanwhile Tory Finlay Carson was successful in holding the party’s Galloway and West seat, which was previously held by retiring Tory MSP Alex Fergusson.

The politician gained 14,527 votes.

In second place was the SNP’s Alieen McLeod with 13,013 followed by Labour’s Fiona O’Donnell with 4876.

The Lib Dem’s Robert Metcalf gained just 947.

Finlay Carson said: “I’m absolutely delighted. We’ve worked really hard and I think the margin of the victory has surprised us all, we thought it would be a lot closer but I think we did what we needed to do.
“We went out and spoke to as many people as possible, we spent a lot of time right across the region.
“I think it’s really important to speak to people at the doorstep and get across what I hope to achieve for the region and I’m just so grateful that they have put their trust in me.”





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