West Lothian Council election round-up: Lib Dems dislodge Tory vote in Linlithgow

The Liberal Democrats claimed their first ever seat on West Lothian Council in a shocking result for the Conservatives fighting to retain the seats they won in 2017.

By Stuart Sommerville, LDR
Monday, 9th May 2022, 11:10 am

Local bookshop owner Sally Pattle was elected alongside Labour veteran Tom Conn and Pauline Orr for the SNP. Tory candidate Chris Horne, who had hoped for a majority of retiring Provost Tom Kerr’s 3,000 votes, was slowly eased out of the frame after a strong initial showing in first preference.

He was soon followed by Bathgate’s Charkes Kennedy and Whitburn’s Bruce Fairbairn after promising starts. Mr Fairbairn lost by two votes after the SNP secured two of the four seats in that ward, with Jim Dickson re-elected and his wife, Mary, a former councillor, returning to the chambers after a five year absence.

In East Livingston and East Calder Frank Anderson, the council’s longest serving member, lost out to long time friend and fellow SNP councillor Carl John who was joined by Veronica Smith for the party. Tory group leader Damian Doran-Timson was returned, as was his wife Angela in the Broxburn ward and Peter Heggie in Livingtson South.

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Labour group leader and depute Lawrence Fitzpatrick and Kirsteen Sullivan were both re-elected.

Bathgate’s Conservative Charles Kennedy was the third Conservative to see his seat disappear.

Tory Group leader Damian Doran Dimson said he was disappointed by the numbers but said that the results showed that the Boris factor had not really been an issue, with strong support in first choice votes for Conservatives.

Newly returned SNP group leader Janet Campbell was delighted at the strong showing of the party and said that she was keen to talk with progressive parties.

Chris Horne (Conservative) lost his seat in Linlithgow. Picture by Stuart Vance.

The poll leaves the SNP with 15 seats. Labour has 12 seats, the Tories four seats, Lib Dems one, Independent one. Turnout across the wards was a healthy 40 per cent or above.

First Preference votes for elected councillors:

Linlithgow: Tom Conn (Lab) 1,391. Sally Pattle (Lib Dem) 1,447. Pauline Orr (SNP) 1,869.

Broxburn Uphall and Winchburgh: Diane Calder (SNP) 1990, Janet Campbell (SNP) 880, Ann Davidson (Lab) 1,305, Angela Doran-Timson (Con) 1,215.

Livingston North: Robert De Bold (SNP) 2,133, Andrew Miller (SNP) 1,380, Ann McMillan (Lab) 1,347, Alison Adamson (Con) 1,256.

Livingston South: Lawrence Fitzpatrick (Lab) 2,028, Maria MacAulay (SNP) 2,252, Peter Heggie (Con) 884, Moira McKee Shemilt (SNP) 698.

East Livingston and East Calder: Carl John (SNP)1,741, Damian Doran-Timson (Con) 1,205, Veronica Smith (SNP) 622, Danny Logue (Lab)1,079.

Fauldhouse and the Breich Valley: Pauline Clark (SNP) 1,292, Cathy Muldoon (Lab) 1,113, Craig Meek (Lab) 924.

Whitburn and Blackburn: Jim Dickson (SNP) 1,734, Mary Robertson Dickson (SNP) 636, George Paul (Lab) 1,237, Kirsteen Sullivan (Lab) 1,055.

Bathgate: William Hannah Boyle (SNP) 1,806, Harry Cartmill (Lab): 2,496, Tony Pearson (Lab) 375, Pauline Stafford (SNP) 1,190.

Armadale and Blackridge: Stuart Borrowman (Ind) 2,571, Lynda Kenna (SNP) 1,159, Andrew McGuire (Lab) 742.