Election 2015: SNP win backing of second Labour stalwart

Wilma Grant and SNP candidate Peter Grant
Wilma Grant and SNP candidate Peter Grant

A former Labour councillor and one-time leader of Kirkcaldy District Council has become the second local high-profile ex-politician to voice their support for the SNP’s Westminster candidate inside a week.

Former teacher Wilma Grant has told the Gazette she has been left no choice by the party for which she was once an active member.

Miss Grant’s support for Peter Grant (no relation) comes just days after Fiona Purdon, a prominent former Labour councillor and current chairman for Glenrothes Foodbank, announced she would be voting for Mr Grant on May 7.

“I’ve been a Labour supporter all my life having joined the party in the 1980s during the teachers’ strikes, and although my principles and ideals are still the same I feel the party has changed,” Miss Grant told the Gazette.

She added that Labour’s candidate selection process, which caused divisions a among some local members, was the “last straw”.

“Labour UK seem to be parachuting unknowns into what they see as ‘safe’ seats, angering many long-standing supporters” said Miss Grant.

“That’s the problem. UK Labour ignoring what’s happening in Scotland, local branches powerless to stand their ground.”

Miss Grant also said Labour were “foolish” to stand alongside the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats on the referendum and points to the lack of what she sees as “basic principles” as to why she is now making the switch.

“The SNP has risen in respect, it has galvanised support from all quarters and I feel its leadership is strong and not afraid to stand up to Westminster.

“I’ve decided to vote for Peter as he’s a local councillor who is well known for who he is and what he stands for.”

The SNP candidate said he was delighted to have the support of another high profile ex-labour member.

“Right across the constituency the message is clear that Labour voters are coming to the SNP in their droves because they see that the only SNP will stand up to Tory And Labour austerity cuts,” said Mr Grant.