Hamish Watt

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Hamish Watt
Member of Parliament
for Banffshire
In office
28 February 1974 – 3 May 1979
Preceded by Wilfred Baker
Succeeded by David Myles
Majority 1,851
Personal details
Born (1925-12-27)27 December 1925
Keith, Scotland
Died 12 April 2014(2014-04-12) (aged 88)
Portgordon, Moray, Scotland
Nationality Scottish
Political party Scottish National Party
Children Maureen Watt
Alma mater University of St Andrews
Profession Farmer

Hamish Watt (27 December 1925 – 12 April 2014) was a Scottish politician, farmer and writer. He was the SNP MP for Banffshire 1974–1979 and was later Rector of the University of Aberdeen and a Councillor.

Early life[edit]

He was born on 27 December 1925 in Keith, Scotland.[1] The son of William Watt and Caroline Allan, he was educated at Keith Grammar School and at the University of St Andrews.[1] and was involved in dairy and sheep farming and other business interests.

Political career[edit]

He contested Caithness and Sutherland as the Conservative candidate in 1966. He then switched to the Scottish National Party (SNP), contesting Banffshire in 1970.

He was elected as Member of Parliament (MP) for the Banffshire seat in the Feb 1974 general election, holding it until the 1979 election.[2] He was one of 11 SNP MPs elected in 1974. In October, he was announced as the SNP's spokesperson on agriculture and fisheries.[3] Later in this parliamentary session he spent two years as the party's chief whip.[1] After a boundary change, he was unsuccessful SNP candidate for Moray in 1983.

He was later a Regional and District Councillor with Moray District Council and Grampian Regional Council from 1985–90 (including serving as Chairman of the Grampian Education Committee from 1986–90). He sought reselection as a SNP candidate in the Grampian region, but was turned down by the party.[4]

In 1999, he stood as an independent candidate for Gordon but finished fifth.[5]


He was Rector of the University of Aberdeen from 1985–88. Latterly he was a newspaper columnist, after-dinner speaker and author. He was parodied as "Hamish Banff" in the 7:84 theatre company's play Little Red Hen.


His daughter Maureen Watt became an MSP in 2006,[6] and his grandson Stuart Donaldson (Maureen's son) was elected in 2015 as the MP for West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine.[7]

Awards and honours[edit]

He was awarded an honorary LLD by the University of Aberdeen in 1988.

He died aged 88 at his home in Portgordon on 12 April 2014.[1][8][9]


  1. ^ a b c d "Obituary:Hamish Watt". The Herald. 16 April 2014. Retrieved 14 December 2016. 
  2. ^ "Thatcher takes over No 10". The Guardian. 4 May 1979. Retrieved 14 December 2016. 
  3. ^ Clark, William (15 October 1974). "SNP to press Labour on assembly pledge". The Herald. p. 14. Retrieved 15 December 2016. 
  4. ^ "Ex-MP to appeal over SNP decision". The Herald. 30 September 1989. Retrieved 15 November 2016. 
  5. ^ "Vote 99: Constituency:Gordon". BBC News. Retrieved 15 December 2016. 
  6. ^ Gray, Louise (20 April 2006). "Quine taks Doric fecht to Holyrood". The Scotsman. Johnston Press. Retrieved 13 January 2015. 
  7. ^ "Election 2015: Who are the 56 new SNP MPs?". BBC News. BBC. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 15 May 2015. 
  8. ^ Death notice, Press and Journal, 14 April 2014
  9. ^ Obituary, The Telegraph, 14 April 2014.

External links[edit]

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Wilfred Baker
Member of Parliament for Banffshire
Feb 19741979
Succeeded by
David Myles
Academic offices
Preceded by
Robert J. Perryment
Rector of the University of Aberdeen
Succeeded by
Willis Pickard