MSP takes her seat at Holyrood’s top table

Tricia Marwick MSP is the new presiding officer for the Scottish Parliament
Tricia Marwick MSP is the new presiding officer for the Scottish Parliament

TRICIA Marwick’s route to one of the nation’s top political positions began as a bug-eyed youngster glued to the 1964 General Election TV coverage.

Since then, the MSP has gone on to carve a career in politics which has gathered respect from both constituents and political opponents alike.

And such is Mrs Marwick’s standing at Holyrood, members from across the political spectrum have recently voted her into the position of the Scottish Parliament’s new Presiding Officer.

The job will see Mrs Marwick control debates in the Parliament as well as becoming a representative and ambassador for the institution on a worldwide stage.

However, her lofty success wouldn’t have come to fruition if it wasn’t for that night back in 1964.

Mrs Marwick told the Mail: “I was aged 11 when my dad let me stay up in 1964 to watch the election, when Harold Wilson won.

“I remember the excitement of my father that there was a new Labour government and the whole action of the night.”

The MSP, who has worked previously on the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body, an arm of the Scottish Parliament responsible for its administration, said she actually had her eye on the deputy Presiding Officer’s role.

“I thought the election would be close, like in 2007, and no party would be willing to give up one of their own,” she said.

“But when it became clear that the SNP (Mrs Marwick’s former party) had won a majority, I decided to go for it.

“There were one or two MSPs who didn’t return to Parliament who may have had more experience, but I feel I’m well qualified for the job.

“I think my fellow MSPs voted for me because they know I care about the Parliament, and people who have worked with me, like Alex Johnstone from the Conservatives, for example, all know I’m somebody who will put the Parliament first. It’s a little daunting - but very exciting.”