Aberdeenshire West (Scottish Parliament constituency)
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for the Scottish Parliament
|Party||Scottish Conservative Party|
West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine
Aberdeenshire West is a constituency of the Scottish Parliament (Holyrood). It elects one Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) by the first past the post method of election. Also, however, it is one of ten constituencies in the North East Scotland electoral region, which elects seven additional members, in addition to ten constituency MSPs, to produce a form of proportional representation for the region as a whole.
The other nine constituencies of the North East Scotland region are Aberdeen Central, Aberdeen Donside, Aberdeen South and North Kincardine, Aberdeenshire East, Angus North and Mearns, Angus South, Banffshire and Buchan Coast, Dundee City East and Dundee City West.
Constituency boundaries and council area
Aberdeenshire is represented by five constituencies in the Scottish Parliament: Aberdeen South and North Kincardine, Aberdeenshire East, Aberdeenshire West, Angus North and Mearns and Banffshire and Buchan Coast.
The electoral wards used in the creation of Aberdeenshire West are:
- In full: West Garioch; Westhill and District; Huntly, Strathbogie and Howe of Alford; Aboyne, Upper Deeside and Donside; Banchory and Mid Deeside
- In part: East Garioch (shared with Aberdeenshire East), Stonehaven and Lower Deeside (shared with Angus North and Mearns)
Constituency profile and voting patterns
The Aberdeenshire West constituency is an affluent rural constituency located along the western side of the Aberdeenshire council area. To the south of the constituency is Royal Deeside, located along the Valleys of the River Dee, which includes the affluent towns of Aboyne and Banchory and their surrounding rural areas. Along the western end of Royal Deeside is the Cairngorms National Park, covering Queen Elizabeth II's estate of Balmoral Castle. North-east of Deeside is the town of Westhill, which functions as a suburb to the city of Aberdeen. North of here, along the Valleys of the River Don in the area known as "Gordon", is Huntly, home to the Gordon Highlanders, and the former Royal Burgh of Kintore, which has developed into an Aberdonian suburb, with a near doubling of the town's population throughout the 2000s. The constituency is among the least deprived parts of Scotland, with slight deprivation in the south-west of Huntly, and high rates of affluence elsewhere.
Oil and agriculture form a significant part of the local economy, with tourist interests around Royal Deeside. The constituency also covers the Royal Lochnagar distillery located to the west of Royal Deeside.
The Aberdeenshire West constituency was formed in 2011 from the former constituencies of Gordon and West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine. From the establishment of the Scottish Parliament in 1999 until 2007 these constituencies were both represented by the Liberal Democrats. In 2007, Gordon was gained by the SNP's Alex Salmond, who served as the First Minister of Scotland from 2007 until 2014.
In the 2012 local council election, the Conservative vote in areas covered by the Aberdeenshire West constituency tended to be strongest around Royal Deeside, covering the villages of Aboyne, Ballater and Banchory, and to a lesser extent around Westhill and its surrounding areas. The rural region of Garioch, situated along the River Don and its tributary streams, tended to be better for the SNP and Liberal Democrats.
Member of the Scottish Parliament
|1999||Nora Radcliffe||Scottish Liberal Democrats|
|2007||Alex Salmond||Scottish National Party|
|1999||Mike Rumbles||Scottish Liberal Democrats|
As Aberdeenshire West:
|2011||Dennis Robertson||Scottish National Party|
|2016||Alexander Burnett||Scottish Conservative Party|
|Liberal Democrats||Mike Rumbles||7,262||20.6||-7.6|
|Conservative gain from SNP||Swing||+12.0|
|Scottish Parliament election, 2011: Aberdeenshire West|
Blue background denotes the winner of the electorate vote.
|Liberal Democrats||N Mike Rumbles||8,074||28.20||-12.72||4,375||15.26|
|Scottish Senior Citizens||358||1.25|
|Independent - John Cox||70||0.24|
|Independent - David Henderson||31||0.11|
|Independent - Andrew McBride||14||0.05|
|Angus Independents Representatives||6||0.02|
|Total Valid votes||28,636||28,669|
|SNP gain from Liberal Democrats||Majority||4,112||14.36|
|Liberal Democrats hold||Swing|
|Liberal Democrats||Mike Rumbles||14,314||41.1||-4.9|
|Liberal Democrats hold||Swing|
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-07-27. Retrieved 2011-05-14.
- "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2012-03-16. Retrieved 2011-05-14.