Scottish Tories win seat from Labour in council by-election

A new Scottish Tory councillor has been elected in Dumfries and Galloway <i>(Image: PA)</i>
A new Scottish Tory councillor has been elected in Dumfries and Galloway (Image: PA)

THE Scottish Conservatives have won a by-election in Dumfries and Galloway.

The vote was called after Labour’s Sandy Whitelaw resigned his council seat in the Mid Galloway and Wigtown West ward less than six months after being elected.

All of Scotland’s five largest political parties stood candidates in the by-election, with the Tories taking the prize.

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Richard Marsh will be the newest councillor in Dumfries and Galloway after winning 53.3% of the vote.

While the Tories increased their vote share compared to the 2022 local elections, the SNP, Greens, and Labour all saw theirs decline.

The LibDems won 5.7% of the vote, but did not stand a candidate in the ward in the elections earlier this year, according to analysis from Ballot Box Scotland.

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Tory politicians lined up to congratulate Marsh on the result, with Miles Briggs MSP writing: “Fantastic result – congratulations to Richard Marsh and the local D&G team on gaining Mid-Galloway and Wigtown West from Labour.”

Daniel Hooper-Jones, the Green candidate, wrote on Twitter: “Congrats to Richard Marsh on his election! While the result is disappointing, I’m proud to have encouraged lots of young people to vote, many for the first time!

“Also proud to have received a massive vote in Wigtown! Thank you everyone!”

Dumfries and Galloway Council is controlled by a Labour-SNP coalition – despite the Scottish Labour leadership’s rhetoric about not entering any formal deals.

The Tories are the largest group on the council.