SNP’s sweeping victories in Fife


The SNP are on course to make a clean sweep in Fife.

Two seats have been declared - and both were crushing wins for the nationalists as they struck deep in Labour’s heartland.

Peter Grant took Glenrothes with a resounding 13,897 majority over Melanie Ward.

And, just minutes later, they got the seat they coveted most of all - Kirkcaldy - as Roger Mullin ended 80 years of Labour rule as he wiped out Gordon Brown’s massive majory and eeased home by nearly 10,000 votes to end Kenny Selbie’s hopes for Labour.

The north-east Fife vote is still some time away but it too is expected to deliver a massive SNP majority as the Kingdom turns yellow.

In Glenrothes, Mr Grant, former Fife Council leader, polled 28,459, well ahead of Melanie Ward’s 14,562.

Alex Stewart-Clark claimed third place for the Tories on 3685, while the Lib Dem vote collapsed once more with Jane Ann Liston gaining just 892.

In Kirkcaldy, Mr Mullin was an easy winner with 27,628 votes.

Mr Selbie took 17,654 with Dave Dempsey taking third place foer the Tories on 5223.

UKIP candidate Jack Neill - whose campaign was so low key it was almost invisble - still knocked Lib Dems’ Callum Leslie into last place with 1237 votes to 1150.

Mr Leslie wasn’t on the podium or in the hall for the result being announced.

Peter Grant hailed ‘‘a seismic change in politics’’ adding: ‘’Things have changed for ever.’’

Both he and Mr Mullin paid tribute to their predecessors, but the night belonged to the SNP whose banners flew in victory as the results were decalred by Steve Grimmond, returning officer.

Mr Grant said: ‘‘I thought we could win - but this was something special.’’

He said there had been a positive reaction in traditional Labour areas which helped to deliver a 35% swing to the SNP.

Mr Mullin put his ‘‘historic swing’’ down to SNP running ‘‘an exemplary national campaign’’ and added: ‘’We simply out-campaigned everyone else, and my team was remarkable.

‘‘We spoke to 20,000 mpeople on their doorsteps alone, and, at the end of the day, politics is personal, and that has proved critical.’’

Mr Mullin also said he benefitted by Labour keeping their candidate ‘‘out of the frontline.’’

For the losers, there was only the consolation of thanking their campaign teams.

Melanie Ward said: ‘‘Clearly it has been a disappointing night but we fought for the values we as a party believe in. Sadly that has not been enough to win the seat but we will stand by those values now and for the future.’’

Kenny Selbie: ‘‘From a personal point of view extremnely disappointed at the slide, We have seen wave of support for SNP across the country and we have not been immune to that. It looks as if we will see this across the whole of Scotland.’’

He added: ‘‘I go away with my head held high.’’