SNP the big winners in Borders European Election vote

SNP candidate Heather Anderson, centre, seen enjoying the count with fellow SNP councillors Elaine Thornton Nichol and Claire Ramage.
SNP candidate Heather Anderson, centre, seen enjoying the count with fellow SNP councillors Elaine Thornton Nichol and Claire Ramage.

A huge swing to the Scottish National Party in the Borders saw them soar to victory with 28.2% of the vote in the Borders region European Election count.

The result, declared just after 10pm tonight, saw the Brexit Party in second place, followed by the Conservative and Unionist Party in third – collecting only 18.8% of the vote compared to over 30% in the last General Election.

The count gets under way.

The count gets under way.

The Liberal Democrats, who took a severe bashing at the last General Election, also showed up well, as did the Scottish Greens, who had what has be be their best ever result in the Borders.

Counillor Heather Anderson, who is fifth on the national list for the SNP said this was a “clear sign that people in the Borders want to remain in Europe”.

She said: “This is a brilliant result for us.

“We got over 28%, right at the top of the poll.

“We’ve put a huge dent in the Conservative vote and if this is replicated across Scotland it sends a clear message from Scotland ... we want to remain in the European Union.”

Scottish Borders Council leader Shona Haslam was at the count in the Volunteer Hall earlier in the evening, but, as she was third on the Conservative list in Scotland, she was not present at the result, having headed up to Edinburgh for the national declaration.

Liberal Democrat candidate Catriona Bhatia, the former Scottish Borders councillor, was also third on her party’s list, and she too was delighted at the swing to the Lib Dems locally.

She said: “It’s great to see our share of the vote increasing in the Borders and our message of staying in the EU and stopping Brexit being popular here.

There has been a strong remain vote, and we’ve benefited from that, as well as from a great deal of local work which has been going on by our activists, so it’s been a good night for us.”

There was less local support for the Change UK Party, for which Selkirk GP Kate Forman was third on the list.

And the two independent candidates polled the least votes, with Selkirkshire Councillor Gordon Edgar amassing just 370 votes across the Borders.

With the full Scottish result yet to be declared, it does look like the SNP are well on top, with the Brexit Party in second at the moment.

But across the UK, Brexit seem to be the biggest winners as results continue to come in.

The results in the Borders were as follows:

SNP 10,761

Brexit Party 7,188

Conservative and Unionist 7,152

Liberal Democrats 6,900

Scottish Greens 2,997

Labour 1,059

Change UK 730

UKIP 671

Gordon Edgar (ndependent) 370

Ken Parke (Independent) 38