Tory Or Labour – Which One is the Natural Party of Government in Scotland – Calton Jock’s Letter to Willie

 

 

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Jock – The Labour Party in the West of Scotland Was Never Entirely Reliant on the Orange Order Vote – Willie You are Confused

You are correct but with an added fact.

The Labour Party was always to the fore in the West of Scotland but the Tory’s held the upper hand, up to the 1960’s when it came to the number of Scottish MP’s sent to Westminster.

That is until they removed the word “Unionist” from the party name in the early 1960’s.

The Orange Order Protestants were infuriated and punished the Tory’s by transferring their vote to Labour.

Within a decade the Tory Party declined substantially.

A change compounded when Thatcher gave her support to the Anglo-Irish Agreement allowing Irish politicians a say in the politics of the North.

This almost wiped the Tory Party out in Scotland and it has been, until recently in the doldrums for nearly 30 years.

 

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What’s changed?

Devolution in 1997 brought major change to the political map. For the first time in 300 years Scots were permitted a little taste of political freedom, albeit saddled with the oppressive hand of Westminster control over anything of note.

But although Scots had voted in a referendum, for the establishment of a Federal State system of devolved governance the minimal change (as a first effort) satisfied the European Union who had directed the Westminster Government devolve powers to the regions of the UK

But Westminster was not inclined to devolve any control and voting systems applicable to the reconvened Scottish Parliament were gerrymandered by the Westminster controlled civil service and their political masters so that the Parliament would be denied any one party forming the “Executive”

This ensured that the first past the post system of election to Westminster would hold sway over Scotland for ever since the politics of Scotland would be contained by the votes of MP’s sent from Scotland to Westminster which would reflect the make up of the “Scottish Executive”

And it worked. The “Scottish Executive” developed as an extension of the Labour and Liberal Democrat Party’s. But even with a very limited range of devolved powers the incompetence of the Labour and Liberal Democratic party’s became evident and the Scottish electorate turned the voting system on its head, rejecting the old politics and the party’s associated with it.

The 2007 Scottish Election returned Scottish National Party (SNP) candidates in numbers sufficient to allow the party to form a minority executive. Accepting the challenge the SNP went on to govern Scotland successfully blowing way old ways of thinking changing the country from a “can’t do” to a “can do” society.

The success of the SNP minority government was rewarded in the next 2 Scottish Election’s when Scots voted for the Party in very large numbers. Gaining experience and making the most of the few powers it had the SNP Government asked Westminster to devolve more powers to Scotland. Their requests were rejected out of hand. The answer was always the same. “Be content with what you’ve got or we’ll take it away”.

But Scots responded protesting vigorously at the attitude of Westminster politicians and very soon gaps started to appear on the “Berlin Wall” that Westminster had erected between London and Scotland. First the Liberal Democrat Party broke ranks and supported devolving some additional powers. The bandwagon effect brought a reluctant Labour Party to the negotiating table  but progress was torturous and it soon became evident that the efforts of both party’s bringing forward change became hopelessly bogged down as self-interest gained control of the thought process of politicians in Westminster.

The Conservative Party ruled out any change, indeed the reverse was proposed by a number of prominent Tory’s who were in favour of shutting down what they perceived to be a failed experiment. The EU should be ignored and control returned to Westminster

The SNP hit back demanding the right to conduct a referendum asking Scots if (as was their right) they wished to withdraw from the 1707 Treaty of Union. Permission granted and a referendum was held in 2014.

Much has been written about the conduct of Westminster politicians during the referendum but perhaps suffice to say that the only thing of persuasion not used by the State in the propaganda war against those who voted “Yes” was the Trident missiles located at Faslane. History will not look kindly on the behaviour of those who forced the “no” vote to success denying Scots their freedom.

 

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Returning to the Tory Party

A check of the Tory Party election campaign literature up to 2016 confirms the Party name was the Conservative Party.

A check of the literature for this years election reveals the change.

The party’s name is now the Conservative and Unionist Party.

Davidson has taken Scottish politics back to the bad old days.

Encouraging and promoting sectarianism and social division.

I despair at the cynical abuse of the Scottish electorate and pray that Scots will reject Tory Party dogma at the ballot box posting it to oblivion for ever as a political force in Scotland.

Let them ply their rich man poor man politics in England.

 

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The Unionist Protestant Orange Order Helped Create the Labour Party In Scotland and It Has Now Destroyed It – Kezia There is Still Time to Create an Independence Alliance With the SNP

 

 

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Political Fun and Games

Much has been made in the Unionist press and media of a resurgence in the fortunes of the Tory Party in the local Council elections.

Some political pundits attribute the change to a transfer of allegiance by the Protestant Orange Order away from the Labour Party to the Tory Party which recently changed its name from The Conservative Party back to The Conservative and Unionist Party. A minor change garnering a major result.

If affirmed the Labour Party voter base might deteriorate further in the General Election but  this will probably manifest in Labour voter apathy and it is unlikely any party will benefit in the short term.

The polarisation of Scottish politics is now well established.

The Conservative and Unionist Party has claimed the right to defend the Union.

The influence and role of the Labour Party and the Liberal Democratic Party is reduced that of political spoilers.

In the local council elections the Conservative and Unionist party recruited, marshalled and deployed their activists much more effectively than any other party and reaped the benefits. Lessons are there to be learned.

The SNP stand alone promoting the case for independence and it is imperative that every effort should be made to get supporters of independence to the voting booths on the day of the General Election.

The article that follows provides a detailed history of the Orange Order in Scotland and its capacity for disruption.

 

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The Orange Order in Scotland

The Orange Order first surfaced in the north of Ireland in 1795.

It’s constitution commits members to the defence of Protestantism and the British Crown.

It provides a focus for Protestant ethnic groups in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Although it’s promoted activities are focused on social and religious matters the political dimension has always been considered to be of prime importance and the Order has provided a number of political activists and leaders at many levels of Scottish political society.

The Order is not exclusively an Irish import to Scotland since the politics of native Scots in the West of Scotland was historically sectarian in nature but apathetic towards the problems of Ireland.

This ensured the political growth of the Irish-Protestant working class in Scotland would be influenced by native Scots who were more inclined to embrace socialist ideology as opposed to confrontation.

The loss of many thousands of young Scots soldiers and the depression after WW1 changed the mindset of Irish immigrants and their descendants who became more reliant on the Order to ensure their place in Scottish society.

This brought with it a significant increase in membership and a much enhanced Order presence in the politics of Scotland in the 1920-1939 period.

At the end of WW2 and up to the late 1950’s the Order was influential in ensuring the political direction of the Protestant working class vote in the Central belt of Scotland.

The industrial downturn and slum clearance programmes in Scotland, brought about the establishment of overspill areas, such as Easterhouse and Castlemilk.

Expansion of town and village living; Coatbridge, Airdrie, Motherwell, Hamilton and the new town of Cumbernauld.

Similar programmes were completed in Edinburgh and the East of Scotland forming overspill areas such as Muirhouse, Sighthill and the new-towns of Glenrothes and Livingston.

The impact of the changes on the Order was significant. Membership fell sharply as the population of the Central belt of Scotland became more dispersed and the influence of the Order was lessened markedly.

But although much reduced in numbers the Order in Scotland is still influential in Protestant communities.

Membership has remained consistent in the West of Scotland (in or around Glasgow) and North Lanarkshire

West Lothian, in the East of Scotland is an Order stronghold and there are a significant number of lodges in Renfrewshire, Wigtownshire and Ayrshire.

Conversely there are few lodges in Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and the Highlands and Borders regions.

 

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Male membership of the Order

The highest ever male concentration of the Order in Scotland was recorded at 10% in Govan and Rutherglen, but overall Scottish male membership density rarely exceeded two percent.

At 2017 the figure is reduced to less than 1%.

For comparison male membership of the Order in Belfast routinely peaks at around 20%

 

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Membership Patterns

In Glasgow, at Ward level, pockets of the Order are to be found in; Govan (Kingston), Ibrox, Kinning Park, Fairfield, Kingston, Rutherglen, Cowcaddens, Drumchapel, Maryhill, Possil, Cowlairs, Baillieston and Bridgeton.

 

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Causes of Membership Change

Order membership improved following the introduction of licensed social clubs coupled with an ever increasing appeal of soccer and para-military activity in Northern Ireland.

Spikes and fluctuations in membership are also attributed to a number of factors:

1) Threats to Protestantism: Marked decrease in Scottish Protestant church membership and increasing secularisation resulting in declining church attendance and Pastoral influence.

2) Threats to the Union: e.g.. A visit of the Pope

 

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The Northern Ireland Troubles of 1969-90

In the 1960’s and throughout the troubles the policies of the Order in Scotland became ever more militant answering the perceived threat to the Union by Nationalists.

“Scottish” Lodges and their bands travelled to Northern Ireland in increasing numbers in the “Marching” season.

Over time the distinct “Scottishness” of marching lodge members was replaced with “Ulsterness”.

Pipe bands stopped travelling and Scottish Saltires were replaced with the Red hand of Ulster.

The retention of the Union Jack proved to be significant.

Later surveys identified that Order members claimed their identity to be “British” and it was the protection of the “Union” that drove them to go to Ulster each year.

The Grand Lodge of Scotland which supported financial contributions to Ulster, was also heavily involved politically, without success throughout the period with the many differing factions in Ulster and UK governments.

Nevertheless the Order benefited from the troubles achieving the highest ever level of membership in many years.

 

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The Sea Change

The 1982 visit of the Pope proved to be the turning point for the Order and it’s steady decline in membership and influence.

Hard-line “Ulsterised” rank and file members demanded militant action preventing the visit but were not supported by senior Order officers or the Grand Lodge.

A number of small groups ignored instructions and went ahead with protests causing an amount of disruption.

The failure of the Grand Lodge to establish control encouraged lodges to ignore instructions forbidding it introducing Sunday opening, the sale of alcohol and singing and dancing.

An added impact was the increasing militancy and unruly behaviour of marching bands and their supporters.

Bands had evolved from the Scottish pipe bands of the 1960’s, first to the accordion, then to “blood and guts” flute bands whose average age was under 30y.

Despite suspensions the bands continued to perform at many “Orange Walks” in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

 

 

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Influence

The Order in Scotland can be credited with the establishment of a working class Unionist Tory base through the lodge system and it’s influence over political events in Glasgow up to the start of WW2, was substantial resulting in a number of Tory Orange Order MP’s being elected to Westminster.

The Order had little purchase however in the rest of Scotland since there were no other significant Orange Order clusters.

The Scottish Unionists successful political recruitment and retention strategy up to the early 1960’s was centred on cultivating the votes of the Order membership without compromising it’s aims and ideals.

But the party alienated many members of the Order when it turned away from Unionism retaining only “Conservative” in it’s title.

Many Order members drifted away to the Labour party.

Thatcher’s agreement to support the 1985 Anglo-Irish Agreement proved to be the catalyst that severed any links between the Order and the Tory Party in Scotland.

Disillusioned Order members, supported by the Grand Lodge formed a political block to the Tory Party using their votes tactically making claim to a reduction in the number of Tory MP’s in Scotland.

Political observers are inclined to the view that the withdrawal of their support had less impact on the fortunes of the Tory party in Scotland blaming other Thatcher actions against Scotland.

 

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Freemasonry in Scotland

The Scottish Protestant tradition of Masonry stretches back to the middle ages and  the organisation of Freemasons in Scotland is broadly similar to that of the Orange Order.

Indeed there is a school of thought that supports the view that the Order first adopted the rules of Scottish Freemasonry and amended them to suit their own needs.

It is of no surprise that the Orange Order has done so well among Scottish Protestants.

Scotland’s total of around 170,000 Masons is the largest Masonic membership rate worldwide making it a Protestant institution guaranteed it’s place in Scottish society.

The stability of Scottish Freemasonry is attributed to its “articles of association” which require members to be strictly apolitical and non-religious, unlike the Orange order, (with 70% of its Scottish membership clustered in Central Scotland.)

It is also important to draw attention to class differences in the two groups of Protestants in Scotland.

In Glasgow, Masonic Lodge halls are primarily located in the more affluent West of the City and in the satellite villages and small towns on the city’s outskirts.

Major concentrations of Masonic lodges are also to be found in the Borders, Highlands and the North-east.

Other lodges are located, in Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh and Perth.

Conversely Orange Order Lodge Halls are located in working class areas of Glasgow and similar locations in other Towns in the West of Scotland.

 

 

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Spread of Freemason Lodges

 

 

 

Conclusions

In the last 30 years Scottish Protestant church membership and attendance has fallen significantly and the Grand Lodge is increasingly impotent in the control of younger, often more militant members who challenge it’s right to dictate policy in regards to the support of Ulster Orange-men.

The continued presence of the Order is directly attributed to the past influx of Irish-Protestant immigrants and their descendants and it’s power is only retained in areas of historic Irish-Protestant immigration such as Larkhall, Airdrie and parts of West Lothian. Overall however the strength of the Order, (even in the West of Scotland) is relatively weak.

 

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Katie Mackie – Tory Born and Bred – Twice Rejected by Edinburgh Voters – Got Lucky in Musselburgh in 2017 – Candidate for East Lothian Westminster Seat – Short Changing the Electorate

Katie Mackie with Ruth Davidson

 

 

 

 

April 2017: Scottish Tory Candidate Selections Proceed Apace Using Fast-Track Rules

Whereas in England and Wales there’s a competitive process for most Tory held and target seats (unless CCHQ and the Association agree to automatically reselect a previous candidate), the Scottish Conservatives have opted to make it the norm to offer every association a single candidate approved by by Ruth Davidson.

Any local association has the right to reject that offer and go for the longer competitive route, but, to quote the Scottish rules: “It will be emphasised to the association chairman that the process needs to be as efficient as possible and (approving a nominated single candidate) is the preferred option for selection.”

This allows total control of the candidate selection process by the leadership.

(http://www.conservativehome.com/parliament/2017/04/scottish-conservative-candidate-selections-proceed-apace-using-fast-track-rules.html)

 

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Katie Crighton Mackie and her Family

Redundant  following Diageo’s closure of their VAT69 distillery, in South Queensferry Melvin Mackie took up a Director post, from 1988-1990, at The Edinburgh Development & Investment Group:(property leasing) based at 3 Cockburn Street.

In 2002, Melvin, his wife May (married 1968) and Katie born Glasgow,1971  relocated to England where Melvin purchased and managed until 2004, the Pheasant Inn, in Cumbria.

Edinburgh, ( Morningside) born, Melvin retired in 2004 aged 69yo and bought  a lovely retirement cottage in, Carnforth Lancashire. Value 350-450K.

He was voted onto the Council (Conservative) shortly after taking up residence and is still serving.

This is a link to the 800 strong, Scottish Tory insider discussion group, The group is active and the discussions informative. https://www.linkedin.com/groups/2432384/profile

Katie’s mother May was appointed to and held the post of Director of The Fairbank Society,(care home) in Lancashire serving between 2005-2011.

Ayrshire born, Galston, May retired at age 72yo.

 

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Tracking Katies Career

2000 – 2004: Katie went off to Manchester Metropolitan University, gained a BA Hons Degree in Retail Marketing. She then returned to Edinburgh

2004-2008: Constituency Adviser: Margaret Mitchell MSP.

2007: Unsuccessful candidate for Dunbar and East Linton Council 2007.

2008-2011: Public Affairs Adviser: Scottish Grocers’ Federation.

2010: Unsuccessful Westminster candidate for Falkirk in 2010.

2011-2013: Communications and Legislation Manager: Molson Coors Brewing (UK) Ltd.

2013-2016: External Corporate Affairs Manager: Molson Coors Brewing (UK) Ltd.

2016-2017 Office Manager: Jeremy Balfour, List MSP for Lothian.

2017: Successful candidate(Seventh stage) for Ward 1 Musselburgh, East Lothian Council.

 

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Her Sales Pitch to the People of Musselburgh:

“I am delighted to have been selected as your local Conservative candidate for the local government elections in May. Living in Musselburgh I understand the opportunities and challenges the town faces. I pledge to be a strong voice for the people of Musselburgh and represent all our interests on East Lothian Council. Over the coming months I look forward to speaking to as many residents as possible to hear what your priorities are for Musselburgh. My priorities are:

To focus on improving Musselburgh town centre to support existing businesses and town users and to attract and encourage investment.

To fight against a second independence referendum.

To campaign for an improved train service on the North Berwick line to help Musselburgh commuters with overcrowding problems.

To raise the profile of Musselburgh’s history and heritage in order to boost tourism in the town.

To campaign for flexible local child care services to support working families.

Comment: Still forcing the Ruth Davidson independence mantra onto the electorate. Not the job of a Councillor. Also stood for election on false pretences. She already knew she would be Davidson’s nomination for the Westminster seat. Cynical opportunism.

In my view the people of Musselburgh would be best served by Katie remaining a Councillor. She is not ready for the more challenging role of MP

 

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2017: Selected by local Conservative as the candidate for the Edinburgh East constituency.

 

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Rooth the Mooth Brief Sales Pitch:

Katie has a strong track record of local campaigning, having fought the Falkirk seat in 2010, and most recently in Musselburgh for her successful campaign to serve on East Lothian Council.

Katie is currently employed in the office of Lothian MSP Jeremy Balfour and has previously worked as a constituency adviser to Margaret Mitchell.

 

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Edinburgh and South West – Tory Party Put Up the Jolly Green English Born Unionist Giant For Election – But Ho! Ho! Ho! – Nice But Dim

 

 

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Miles Edward Frank Briggs – His Family Heritage

Miles was born in Preston, Lancashire in 1983. His parents are James Edward and Jean Briggs (nee Haliwell). He has a sister Christina Helen Briggs who was also born in Preston, in 1979.

In the mid-1980’s his mother had charge of the payroll of Ribble Coaches (the largest coach operator in the North East of England) and was promoted to a senior management role and relocated to Bankfoot, Perth after the Stagecoach Group bought the company over.

She took charge of and developed the Stagecoach Group Employee Pension Scheme growing it from 200 to 3500 employees.

She retired in 2004, age 60y. James and Jean sold up and returned to Preston to rejoin the larger Briggs family group. Miles remained in Scotland.

Miles embracing the Unionist cause is no surprise given his background but the structure of information made available by himself is designed to give the impression he was born in Perth, Scotland which he wasn’t.

I expect Sir Brian Souter philanthropist and co-founder of the Stagecoach Group of bus and rail operators and supporter of the SNP will not look kindly upon Miles Briggs commitment to the Tory party given his long working association with his mother.

 

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Miles Briggs Self Penned Autobiography – Look at me I’m Scottish (No you’re Not)

I grew up in Perthshire and first became involved with the local associations helping with local campaigns.

Politics for me is all about community campaigning and the Conservative Party once again being at the heart of local issues and campaigns.

I have lived in the Leith Walk ward for over six years.

I was educated at Auchtergaven Primary, from age 10-12 and then attended Perth Grammar School, I moved away from home, to take a degree at Robert Gordon University in Aberdeen in Management & Politics.

Following graduation I worked for The Executive Council of the Province of Prince Edward Island, Canada.

I have been employed for the last 10 years working as a salaried Special Political Adviser (SPAD) to MSPs Dr Nanette Milne and Liz Smith.

Outside of politics I am a keen hill walker and have completed 83 Munros to date.

I am also interested in rugby, countryside issues, photography, Scottish history & music.

 

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Miles Edward Frank Briggs – Political Aspirations

He is a rather large ruddy faced, affable type of person, whose visual presence is mindful of the Jolly Green Giant.

But despite all of the foregoing benefits he unsuccessfully contested North East Fife in 2010 and Edinburgh South in 2015, before running and getting elected to the Scottish Parliament as a List Member for Lothian Region in May 2016.

One year later he is the Conservative Candidate for Edinburgh and South West Westminster Seat. Evidently a man on a mission

He is the Shadow Minister for Public Health & Mental Health and a Member of the Parliament’s Health & Sport Committee and is Co-Convenor of the Parliament’s Cross Party Group on Cancer and Convenor of the Parliament’s Cross Party Group on Scottish Horse-racing & Bloodstock Industries.

He is actively involved in numerous other Cross Party Groups.

 

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Miles in Action – His Contribution to Debate is Thoughtful But Not Inspiring

 

Miles seeking to convince the Scottish parliament Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee to set up a cross party group on Scottish Horse-racing and Bloodstock Industries.

Look out for Patrick Harvie exposing the real reason for the submission which is to form a lobby group to promote the interests of businessmen with an interest in horse racing.

 

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhI1AzJrT6Q

Hustings Meeting – Edinburgh South 28 April 2015 Fairmilehead Parish Church.

Ian Murray participating together with Miles and other candidates for the South of Edinburgh seat.

At 1.25:45 Miles speaks out against Political Party’s selecting the candidates for office. Yet here we are in 2017 and Ruth Davidson has decided personally each and every person to be nominated for each constituency in Scotland.

 

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZSydY_Dag4

Election Hustings 2015 – University of Edinburgh, Kings Buildings. Neil Hay, Ian Murray and Miles Briggs speak to the constituents of Edinburgh South. Miles reads from a prepared script no spontaneity.

 

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNpmQ-Ov_HQ

11 March 2017: Ian Murray and Miles Briggs provided with 5 minutes nationwide television exposure to discuss the SNP. Disgraceful. BBC should ensure balanced argument and this is not that.

 

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West Dunbartonshire – Bad News Day – The Parcel of Rogues Are Back Seeking to Blind-side You into Voting Tory – Good News – Early Warning So You Don’t Fall For the Hype

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Penelope (Penny) Alison Veronica Hutton (nee Salvesen) Tory candidate for West Dunbartonshire

Her fabulously rich family are linked to some of the richest landowners in Scotland.

The old saying holds true “if she cut herself she would bleed blue blood.

Quite why she is the Tory candidate for West Dunbartonshire defeats me since the wider family could buy and sell West Dunbartonshire many times over and still consider the purchase to be achieved by spare cash.

It might be now that her children are adults she has a bit more time available and is a wee bit bored.

She was at some time or other a director of some of the family companies.

Her brother Jeremy’s obit provides further explanation: (http://www.scotsman.com/news/obituaries/obituary-jeremy-salvesen-entrepreneur-and-adventurer-1-3380489)

 

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Penelope – A Closer Look at her Lineage

Penelope (Penny) Alison Veronica Salvesen is the daughter of John Salvesen, a Kelso farmer, the great-grandson of the famously successful and wealthy Norwegian immigrant Christian Salvesen.

She is the great-great-granddaughter of Christian Salvesen, the 19th-century Norwegian immigrant who went on to develop the Salvesen shipping, whaling and road transport conglomerate who also brought the first penguins to Edinburgh Zoo.

 

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Her Husband John Rupert Hutton is Near Enough Scottish Royalty

James Rupert Hutton is the son of Commander John Robin Hutton and Elizabeth Judy MacMillan.

The family are directly descended from the Chief of the Clan Mcmillan through General Sir Gordon Holmes Alexander MacMillan of MacMillan and Knap and Rear-Admiral Reginald Maurice James Hutton.

 

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The Coupling of Penelope and John

Penelope (Penny) married James on 12 February 1994. They have 2 adult children. http://thepeerage.com/p17115.htm

 

 

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Penny Hutton – I Am a Scottish Conservative

Her self penned history is at odds with the gentility of her heritage:

“Born in the Borders I have lived in West Dunbartonshire for the last four years with my husband and two children.

Before that we lived in Argyll where we ran a marine and retail business.

I was also an advisor for the Prince’s Scottish Youth Business Trust helping young people to establish and run their own businesses.

I am now a volunteer for the NSPCC Schools Service giving assemblies and workshops in primary schools to help our young people understand abuse and how to get help.

 

 

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Briefly, Her beliefs – Quotes from Roothie the Moothy Political Dogma “Don’t Frighten the Natives” Handbook

“I will endeavour to ensure that funds from the Glasgow City deal (which is majority Westminster financed) are invested properly, eg. The Exxon Mobile site and that Clydebank and West Dunbartonshire get their fair share.

I will also work to bring life back to our town centres and to keep health and social care services local.

I believe in a strong United Kingdom (the rest of the UK being Scotland’s largest export market) and the benefits including inward investment it gives all four of our home nations.

I will oppose the SNP’s plans for a second Scottish independence referendum, which the people of Scotland do not want, and stand up for a strong United Kingdom.

I will support the growth and development of H.M.N.B. Clyde and the employment opportunities this will bring to the constituency, both at the base itself and in the wider community.

I will work with our local MSPs and others to ensure a secure, long term and viable future for the Vale of Leven Hospital.”

 

 

 

Iain McGill – Fantasist – Twittererati and Tory Candidate for Edinburgh North and Leith – Hopefully Voters Will Realise Just How Right Wing He Is and Place Their Trust with the SNP Candidate

 

 

 

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April 2017: Scottish Tory candidate selections proceed apace using fast-track rules

Whereas in England and Wales there’s a competitive process for most Tory held and target seats (unless CCHQ and the Association agree to automatically reselect a previous candidate), the Scottish Conservatives have opted to make it the norm to offer every association a single candidate approved by by Ruth Davidson.

Any local association has the right to reject that offer and go for the longer competitive route, but, to quote the Scottish rules: “It will be emphasised to the association chairman that the process needs to be as efficient as possible and (approving a nominated single candidate) is the preferred option for selection.”

This allows total control of the candidate selection process by the leadership.

(http://www.conservativehome.com/parliament/2017/04/scottish-conservative-candidate-selections-proceed-apace-using-fast-track-rules.html)

 

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Edinburgh North and Leith: Iain McGill The Chosen Candidate

McGill fought the same seat in 2010 and 2015, and the equivalent Scottish Parliament seat in 2016, and stood for the European Parliament in Scotland in 2014.

He is a fiercely loyal Conservative activist and is desperate to have the political position to make a difference.

He is the part owner of an employment agency in Leith.

He was firmly behind David Cameron in wanting to renegotiate the EU deal, but will definitely not be voting to stay in the EU.

Although born in Edinburgh he retains strong links protestant unionist links with Ulster (through his mother).

He is quoted as saying: My mum’s Northern Irish, and I’ve much more family living there than I have in Leith.

Twas Ulster Day whilst I was here, and the centenary of Carson, and my great grandfather, signing the covenant. No doubt I’d have signed it as well had I been around 100 years ago.

 

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McGill’s Sales Pitch to the Electorate

I started off in a tenement in the Restalrig area of Edinburgh until too many brothers and sisters arrived and my parents moved to a bigger house just off Easter Road, in the most densely populated area of Scotland.

I went to Drummond High and left the school with next to no qualifications – certainly none that are worth anything. University was certainly not an option for me.

I became a postman in Leith. When other people my age were going to university to study subjects like English, Politics and History, I was slogging away in a Royal Mail sorting office, and pounding the streets making deliveries of a non-political kind.

I’ve been an ambulance driver in Albania, a hovercraft pilot in Africa taking part in massive international aid operations, I’ve run holiday clubs at Pilrig Park School which meet the additional support requirements of young people with complex needs including those with autism, and I’ve worked as a support worker for adults with learning disabilities and in homeless projects.

Volunteering around the constituency, I’ve a long track record with the likes of The Yard adventure centre, McCrae’s Battalion Trust and Street Soccer Scotland, and I travel every year with Homeless World Cup to referee their ever-growing football tournament.

I am a very typical Tory.

Many people like to stop me, particularly if I’m out ­canvassing in my Edinburgh North and Leith area, to tell me I don’t seem like an archetypal Conservative.

I’m not sure if this is because of my accent, which I suppose is unmistakably Leith, or simply my appearance and manner.

Maybe it’s because I prefer a pint in an old man’s pub to a gin and tonic in an upmarket bar.

Maybe it’s because I’d rather join the Tartan Army for a Scotland away adventure than head to Murrayfield for the rugby.

You won’t often see me in a suit and tie, I’ve never had a job that requires one. I’d much rather get my Hearts scarf on at 3pm on a Saturday then go for a pub crawl round Gorgie than go clay pigeon shooting on a rural estate.

In any case, what always attracted me to the Conservatives was that none of that mattered.

I looked at Margaret Thatcher and John Major both children from working families.

The fact they became Prime Ministers through the Conservatives appealed to me; it proved that if you worked hard enough and earned everything that came to you, it would be possible to achieve more or less anything you like.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kd1KGY6OMMQ (video 1 minute sales pitch vote for me)

 
Comment:

Reading his self penned autobiography I reached the conclusion that McGill is a mix of “Lawrence of Arabia” and “Walter Mitty.”

Regular employment seems to have eluded him, apart from a short period of employment, in Leith with the Post office.

The rest of his adult life appears to be taken up volunteering his services helping others in Edinburgh and all over the world.

Since just about all of his claims of voluntary work attract no salary it leaves one pondering just how he was able to survive. Did he win the lottery?

His treatise also reveals a weakness in his character since it is almost entirely focused on Leith when the constituency includes other areas such as, Muirhouse, Pilto, Granton, and the new Town.

His analysis of the duties of an MP give concern since he measures the job requiring delivery to constituents in two areas.

First would be his total commitment to the policies of Tory Party.

Secondly he would do his own thing primarily assisting rough sleepers.

No mention of matters important to the electorate: unemployment, poverty, housing shortages, welfare cut backs, education and the many other problems that face the public daily
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IB0VolIhpE8

(Independence debate: Stumped by the first question from the Chair. Waffled on about SNP promises then failed to answer a question about GER’s figures.)

 

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 16 February 2012: Iain McGill Twitterati  Arch Enemy of Rangers FC

It is unusual for a resident of Leith to claim to be a hard-line Heart of Midlothian supporter since Hibernian would appear to be a more logical choice.

But the answer is to be found in his strong family links to Ulster. His special affiliation to Hearts reveals a hard-line side to his character.

Namely abusive Twittering: In fact the baiting of Rangers supporters got so bad that the leader of the Rangers Supporters Trust, Chris Graham, published a ‘list’ exposing ‘enemies’ of Rangers for fans to read…. It included Iain McGill:

“He is the Conservative Party candidate for Edinburgh and as such represents his party in what he says. He is also pictured on his website shaking hands with David Cameron. I wonder what the PM would think of McGill’s views” https://twitter.com/DouglasDaniel/status/827510490360344577/photo/1 (An example of McGill’s Tweets baiting Rangers supporters. There are more on his twitter page. (https://twitter.com/IainMcGill?lang=en321.html)

 

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February 2016: Armed policeman spotted making routine traffic stop in Leith

Police Scotland has been criticised after using an openly armed officer to deal with a driver not wearing a seatbelt.

A picture of the incident was taken by a Tory candidate for the Scottish Parliament, who said it showed little had changed at the force despite the arrival of a new Chief Constable.

Businessman Iain McGill was at his office in Edinburgh when he spotted the officer – armed with what is believed to be a Glock semi-automatic – carrying out the routine traffic stop.

McGill posted the snap to his Twitter account with the caption: “Looks like a policeman with a side-arm outside my office ticking someone off for a traffic offence.”

But the force insisted the officer had done nothing wrong and that the driver was placing himself in “danger”. (Driving without a seatbelt)

McGill, 39, said: “There was no attempt to hide the gun. There was a big vehicle with blue lights and a policeman appearing to be giving someone a ticking off for not very much. “It looked like a routine ticking off. They don’t need to be armed to do that.”

Mr McGill, who is contesting the Edinburgh Northern and Leith seat at the elections in May, asked: “What are armed police doing traffic stops on Albert Street for?”

“That’s not the job of the armed police. They have a job to do and that’s not it. It unsettles people rather than reassures people.“

Chief Superintendent Elaine Ferguson today insisted: “These officers were doing absolutely nothing wrong.” She added: ”Drivers and passengers who do not wear a seatbelt are placing themselves at considerable risk if they are involved in an accident.

“Police Scotland’s Standing Firearms Authority means that there is a chance that members of the public will see a small number of our officers in public places wearing side arms.

“Their actions today were in line with the guidance that was introduced in October 2014.

They are still police officers and cannot ignore crimes or offences in progress, just because they are wearing a side-arm.”

(http://www.edinburghnews.scotsman.com/news/armed-policeman-spotted-making-routine-traffic-stop-in-leith-1-4026671)
Public Comments

1.The sheer idiocy of the politicians’ statements in this article is nothing less than most shocking and amazing.

The necessary implication of their statements, concerning the fact that the police officers are armed, is that the politicians do not trust police officers.

The politicians are literally turning police officers into criminals by their statements and their points of view.

Guns are not evil: inanimate objects cannot be good or evil.

It takes a human being to do either the good or the evil.

2. Police officers being armed is no big deal, in point of fact, should a robbery take place, or a severe beating, or an knifing, an armed police police officer could be the difference between saving an innocent persons life, or showing up after the fact to cover the body from view.
3. Firstly I am amazed that the Evening News actually published this article, given that there forerunner post on Facebook last night took pelters from the general public, and miraculously the post disappeared shortly after I read it.

The Poliscopter was hovering over North Edinburgh last night and I pondered whether it was hoping to shine the spotlight on Ian McGill and expose his ridiculous views and comments, but no it was actually targeting relevant issues involving scumbags tearing around Muirhouse on (probably stolen) motorbikes.

McGill is the prospective Tory candidate for Edinburgh North and Leith, well that’s a joke in itself and this publicity will have diminished his paltry vote even more.
4. The current UK threat level for international terrorism today is: SEVERE

This means that a terrorist attack is highly likely. So Mr McGill, I am quite happy that police officers are carrying guns thank you very much.

They might need to save my and your life in the coming months.

When the Government lowers the UK threat level then you might be justified, but at the moment you are just being A.T.I.T (Another Tactically Inept Tory).

Now please go away and do you job properly instead of trying to win Brownie points with this pointless and dangerous article.

 

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McGill and His Misleading Bar-Charts

McGill is in the spotlight is once again, his bar chart suggests that support for Labour and the LibDems is smaller than shown by his own figures.

We measured the lengths of the columns to be 48mm (SNP), 34mm (Con), 8mm (Lab) and 1mm (LibDem).

These lengths are not proportional to the percentages.

If the SNP bar were used as the scale, the heights of the bars should have been 48mm (SNP), 36mm (Con), 14.2mm (Lab) and 5.5mm (LibDem).

Thus, the actual LibDem bar is a massive 82% shorter than it should be and the Labour bar is 44% smaller than it should be. In fairness, the Conservative bar is also 5.6% shorter than it should be. Still, the main impression given is that Labour and LibDem support is significantly smaller than it really is.

Is Iain McGill bothered about dodgy barcharts? So far, his Twitter feed suggests not. This may all seem pedantic, but if politicians can’t get the basics right, what about everything else?

(http://www.broughtonspurtle.org.uk/news/dodgy-election-bar-charts-2)

 

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Newly Elected Kinross Tory Councillor Guilty of AGM Election Fraud – Callum Purves (Society President) and Ian Donnell, (Ulsterman: believer in Faith, Flag and Family and Society Chairman) were investigated and found guilty of serious electoral foul play

 

 

 

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Purves & Donnell front centre

 

 

4 May 2017: Newly Elected Kinross Councillor Guilty of AGM Election Foul Play

Callum Purves (Society President) and Ian Donnell, (Ulsterman: believer in Faith, Flag and Family and Society Chairman) were investigated and found guilty of serious electoral foul play.

The odious behaviour of senior officers of the Society, many since promoted to senior positions within the Scottish Conservative Party is symptomatic of a failure on the part of Ruth Davidson and her colleagues to provide good leadership and guidance to younger members of her Party.

It is conjectured that, had the information contained in this article been made available to the Kinross electorate it is doubtful Purves would have been elected to serve as a councillor. Might be he will do the right thing. Stand down and submit himself for re-election. Full report follows.

 

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Society Chairman: Ian Donnell Ulsterman – believer in Faith, Flag and Family

 

 

 

May 2016: Ruthie the Moothie: Help! We have a Problem

Senior Office Holders of the St Andrews University Conservative and Unionist Association, or Society are Under Investigation Following Allegations of Foul Play. Members of the committee stand accused of “rigging” a recent election.

The charges expose long standing and bitter divides within the Society. Among the allegations (denied by the officers concerned) levelled against current Society president Callum Purves and chairman Ian Donnell are:

(a). Influencing the results of the AGM by having new members signed up to the society in order to vote for Purves and against his opponent, Marcus Buist.

(b). Not requiring that said new members pay membership fees.

(c). Denying Mr Buist access to the membership list.

(d). Creating a hostile society environment based on political divides and with anti-Roman Catholic sentiments.

 

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Explanation of Allegations

Donnell and Purves, outgoing and incoming presidents of the Society, are accused of attempting to manipulate the results of the AGM aided by senior figures in the Society.

Donnell and Purves also hold the positions of National chair and National secretary, respectively, of Conservative Future Scotland (the youth section of the Conservative party in Scotland.)

Michael Green, outgoing vice-president, who also served as returning officer for the election said that he believed both Donnell and Purves had abused their positions in order to ensure the election of Purves as president, whom Donnell had endorsed.

He also said that their actions could be characterised as “rigging” the election in their favour.

Another separate allegation of tampering was lodged by another student who said that he had been asked to join the Conservative Society (having had no prior affiliation.

He further confirmed he had been approached by members of Purves’ campaign team for the sole purpose of voting for him and against the other presidential candidate, Marcus Buist.

A second student, Ludo Stewart said that he had been contacted by a member of Purves’ campaign team a week before the election asking him to join the Society and vote against Mr Buist.

He said: “A member of Callum’s team sent me a message asking if I would do them a favour and sign up for the Tory Society so that I could submit a postal vote. He told me that Marcus Buist was very undesirable, that he would bring the Society into disrepute and that he held very unorthodox views.

They went on to say that the Society would arrange to terminate my membership after (the AGM) so that I wouldn’t have to be a part of a Society whose views I didn’t agree with.”

Mr Stewart then confirmed that he had “never been involved in the Society or been to any of their events” and that “no mention of money was made” during his interactions with the member of Purves’ team, despite the Conservative Society generally requiring a membership fee to become a voting member.

They said I had to vote because of extreme circumstances, but it turned out to be completely normal circumstances. Additionally, I didn’t pay my membership fee. I didn’t realise there was one.”

Adding to his statement Mr Stewart said that at the time he had been approached by Purves’ team they had referred to Purves challenger for office, Mr Buist as being at as a “fascist” who would bring the Society into disrepute.

Yet another student, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that they had been signed up without their knowledge and without having to pay a fee, with the singular purpose of voting for Purves.
He went on to say: “I did not sign up to be a member of the society this year and it was disturbing to be told by a member of Purve’s team, on Sunday 17 April that I was a registered member and that my membership fee had been paid for.”

He also said that he was instructed many times throughout the following day, by a member of the Purves’ team to vote for Purves over Marcus Buist.

Donnell, asked to respond said: “All members who joined the association through the year have joined knowing the aims of the society. We did see an increase in members joining as the AGM approached.

A number of people asked to become members as they were worried that the behaviour of some candidates would damage the association.

As far as membership fees are concerned they will have been received by our treasurer, either directly from new members or representatives who collected membership fees from them. Our accounts are tightly audited by the Union.”

Purves also denied signing up people solely to vote for certain positions.

Mr Buist, attributed the actions taken by other members of the Society to a divide that emerged within the group prior to and as a result of the AGM.

He said: “At the end of first year, it was clear who the two candidates were probably going to be, as was the presence of a largely healthy rivalry that occasionally had nastier spots, but which would always calm down and return to normal.”

He then said that “problems” started within the Society at the beginning of the second semester and intensified through February and March and expanded on the foregoing saying that there began to be “a hostile environment as both sides [began] to think about the AGM.” The Society was soon divided along ideological grounds, between liberal and non-liberal members of the Society.

Another student, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said, “Before the AGM, we were a very happy Society. There was a mix of people who had quite strong conservative views and then people with more liberal views, but there was a place for everyone, and it was a place where you could feel safe, where you could feel like you had friends.

In March it became obvious that support for Callum Purves over Marcus Buist had been taken beyond endorsement. Electioneering turned into a public hate campaign to settle private matters.

I think this was unbelievably selfish and hostile, to use the AGM as a means to settle personal scores. He also observed that it was his view that some in the Society: “wanted to make it their own club and fill it with their friends and that they [didn’t] care about what was best for the Society.”

Donnell refuted accusations of a hostile environment in the group.

He said, “I respect each member of the association I lead, regardless of their views. I have enjoyed our debates and have tried to build an association which holds a wide range of events and speakers to accommodate every ideological persuasion. Our wide-scope of opinions is something of which I am proud.”

Purves as expected, agreed with Donnell, saying, “I have always encouraged debate and discussion within the Association from people across the conservative political spectrum.

We have had many passionate debates over the past year but are fundamentally united in our desire to see greater Conservative representation in Scotland. The key theme of my presidential speech at the AGM was my hope for us to be a more inclusive Society that celebrated difference of opinion.”

Mr Green, standing by his earlier statement confirmed that he believed tension had been created within the group, particularly by Donnell, “It became all about Donnell and what his vision of the Society was.”

 

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A Revised Constitution

Another divide in the Society came as the result of the decision to propose a new constitution.

The new constitution created a second vice-president, added the role of chairman, (which Donnell now holds) and increased his powers and those of the other executive officers.

Mr Buist challenged the changes to the constitution (without success) saying that they represented an unnecessary “centralisation of power” within the Society.

Mr Green said that he believed the new constitution had only been proposed to create additional executive positions on the committee for rewarding selected persons.

He said: “The goal from the very start was to get rid of certain committee members. Donnell didn’t really have a role going forward, so he created the new post of ‘chairman’ for himself.

So the entire purpose of re-jigging the constitution was simply a job creation scheme for approved people.”

 

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E-Mail Ballots

Donnell is also accused of illegally viewing the email ballots of individual members then using the information gained to canvass members.

Mr Green said: “The major thing for me was the fact that Donnell retained personal access to the (official Conservative Society) email account.

This provided him access the email ballots as they were sent in. This meant that he was able to “chase up people that he thought were potentially going to vote for Purves but hadn’t voted yet.”

He added, “Mr Buist was not afforded the same access to the email account and this was a huge disadvantage.”

Mr Stewart, who had been approached to sign up for the Society by a member of the Purves’ campaign team, said that he was later asked if he had sent in his email ballot.

After he confirmed that he had voted, the member of Mr Purves’ team said, “but for Marcus Buist.”  He said, “I assumed that (votes for) AGMs were meant to be anonymous, but the Purves team knew how I had voted.

In regard to the member of Mr Purves’ team that had approached him before the election, he said, “We haven’t spoken since.”

 

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The Campaign

A further dispute that arose during the campaigning period for the AGM was over access to a full list of members for canvassing purposes.

Mr Buist said that he had asked to be provided with a list of members.

Donnell and Purves, who had access to a full membership list in their capacity as president and secretary of the Society respectively refused, stating: “Given that the membership list contains details extending to email and residential addresses of all members, a decision was made that in the interest of data protection the list would not be distributed beyond those who would ordinarily hold it.

Donnell and Purves denied making use of the membership list for the purpose of canvassing members on behalf of Purves.

But Mr Buist and Mr Green accused Donnell of using the list to influence members who Mr Buist may not have known about and was therefore unable to contact.

In support of their allegation they cited an email sent by Donnell to a large number, though not all, members saying:

“Dear All, As the outgoing President of the society I recommend to you the following committee to be elected at our AGM……………………………………… ..If you are minded to agree with my recommendation, then please feel free to copy and paste this list of nominations and also to include the sentence following, “in regards to the constitution I support everything in red”. Please send in an email to toriesmail@st-andrews.ac.uk.”

Donnell’s email then endorsed Purves for president and other people for the committee’s roles.

Donnell said that the email was only sent to people he personally knew to be members.

Mr Stewart refuted this confirming he had received the email but had not known Donnell personally.

 

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Anti-Catholic Racisim

Accusations were also made that some members of the Society had contributed towards an anti-Roman Catholic sentiment within the Society.

Stephan Maier, (member) said that at times there was a “general sentiment” of anti-Roman Catholic feeling in the Society stating that, anti-Roman Catholic remarks were made.

He said: “I’m not someone who feels very uncomfortably easily myself, but I believe others would. People would easily be put off by that immediately, I completely agree with that.

Certain people would feel their presence was unwanted, and their opinion carried little or no value because they were Roman Catholic. It put off people from joining or attending.”

 

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University Response

A spokesperson for the Societies Committee said, “The committee is currently reviewing the election and allegations and will take action as found appropriate.”
Student Comments

Given the Returning Officer’s observations, Purves and Donnell should do the honourable thing, put the reputation of the University (and Conservative Party) before their own, resign and stand again through a new election next term.

If Purves and Donnell bluster their way through a full tenure, their authority and status will be badly tarnished and unfortunately, smell regardless of what actually did or did not happen

I think its absolutely dreadful that Donnell acts in this way. It raises questions regarding Conservative Future Scotland ( the youth wing of the conservatives).

He seems to be lacking in the character and stature to be an honourable politician.

If the St Andrews University Returning Officer has declared major concerns about this Young Conservative election process, it would be right and proper to declare the election void and simply repeat it next term. What is the point of nominating a returning officer for the victors to then ignore his critical assessment of this election process?

Can’t imagine anyone in that photo went to a particularly rough school.

Dodgy Dave would be proud of these Bullingdon club wannabes

An interesting and substantiated story. I’m both shocked and unsurprised that something like this could occur.

 

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From Start to Finish: A Timeline

18 April 2016 – Fraudulent AGM held.

19 May – Allegations of election foul play published; Students’ Association launch investigation into the AGM.

15 September – University Union confirms allegations of election fraud.

19 September – Conservative Society committee informed of results of investigation.

20 September – Meeting between committee and Students’ Association officials to “rectify lack of communication.”

20 September – Notice to Cure (a formal request to rectify the situation) issued to The Conservative Society, with the understanding that the Societies Committee would oversee the upcoming election.

23 September – Several people attempt to purchase membership through the Union, claiming to be members from the year previous. The Students’ Association authorised this under Standing Order 7.3.1 which states that, “Should any person dispute their membership in a society prior to a general meeting of the society, the Societies Committee shall have exclusive jurisdiction to adjudicate membership status.”

23 September – Students’ Association attempt to contact Conservative Society to discuss the option of selling membership through the Cash Office, No reply.

23 September – Conservative Society issued with a second “a notice to cure” asking that the location of the reconvened AGM be released publicly and in a timely manner so that all who wanted to attend would have equal access. Disaffiliation was threatened by the Students’ Association by Monday 26 September – 12PM if the society did not respond.

26 September – St Andrews Conservative and Unionist Society choose to disaffiliate from the Students’ Association.

 

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24 September 2016: Association investigation confirms Conservative Society “election fraud”

An investigation conducted by the Students Association has found that allegations of “election fraud” against the St Andrews Conservative and Unionist Society committee, first revealed in a report by The Saint earlier this year, were in fact true.

The investigation, conducted mainly by last year’s Director of Student Development and Activities, Kyle Blain, confirmed many of the allegations made against the committee regarding the society’s Annual General Meeting (AGM).
The Students Association’s Societies Officer Pia Szabo said, “There were accusations of election fraud and they proved to be true. In short, people were… stacking candidates, having people vote for candidates – and those people hadn’t been members (of the society).”

Elaborating further, Ms Szabo described how the Association found, “blatant evidence of people telling non-members to vote.”

Expanding, Ms Szabo said, “there was evidence of people being invited to the (AGM) who were not paid members and were not even being charged membership fees. This was wrong.”

Ms Szabo also confirmed that the society had been told to re-hold the AGM, this time under closer scrutiny from the Students’ Association.

Ms Szabo also described steps the committee had taken to prevent fraud in the future, “We have advised committees that they must keep track of their members and at any date and time, if we request a member list, they must be able to present it to us.”

Ms Szabo also praised the members of the Society who came forward with the allegations in the first place, saying: “It was the members of the society who said ‘obviously something’s not right here’ which is great because as Societies Committee we’re not actually a governing body, we’re not above societies in any way we’re kind of a resource for them so it was good that the members were the ones who were able to seek out help. And we were then able to help them.”

Commenting, Marcus Buist, the losing candidate for president in the AGM said:  “I am deeply saddened by the unfortunate events of last year. It is some relief to be vindicated by the Union, and that our claims that the election had been unpleasant and corrupted have been confirmed.

 

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26 September 2016: St Andrews Conservative and Unionist Society disaffiliation from the Students’ Association.

Marcus Buist, (the illegally defeated candidate) said, “It’s very sad that, in truth, the society chose to be disaffiliated. Despite the fact that the constitution binds the committee to respect the standing orders of the Union, despite the fact that the current constitution binds them not to be discriminatory and to accept all members properly signed up, including members signed up through the union.

They chose not to accept certain members, sometimes on personal grounds. In truth, they recognised that in a free and fair election that they wouldn’t have the [support of] membership with them.

They chose to take this action, which they are not legally entitled to take without consulting the membership.

The Union was obviously probably quite content to disassociate itself from the society being as it is in current state.

He also dismissed accusations that the committee had wanted to fairly exclude members who were making others feel uncomfortable, saying, “Undoubtedly in my mind it was to make excuses.

Now I’m sure some of them genuinely believe some of the things that have been said, I think that those things are largely ungrounded. Obviously I reject certain accusations accusations that have been made anonymously by certain people. Many of the people they chose to reject were members of the Conservative Party or in any case were members last year.

Obviously they’re not allowed to do that according to Union rules, and I think that’s where the focus should be, on the fact that they refused to abide by fair Union rules because they thought that it would lose them an election.”

He also spoke of his hope that there might be some form of Conservative society restored to affiliation with the Students’ Association at some point, “There are a large number of members, Conservative supporters, people interested in politics, who want to see a more honest and a more fun student politics which cuts out all of this political infighting and all that nonsense, and who want to have a connection with the Union, at the moment there is no society for them which is a significant shame.

The current committee of the disaffiliated society should think very carefully about what they’ve done to deny those people a chance to connect their politics or political interest with their studies and membership of the union.

The society grew from having less than 10 regular members at the start of last year to having an official membership of just under 80 people, when we sung together we sung with one voice.

We debated ideas together and I want it to go back to that, and with some people that’s not going to be possible because they’ve allowed it to get tied up with their own personal views.

But I believe that we can have a future, but that it must be based around a society that remembers that we’re all students and that it should be for students, that maybe puts egos to one side for a little bit, including my own.”

 

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29 December 2016: Ultra Right Wing – St Andrews Students Join Ruthie the Moothie’s intelligentsia Vanguard

Members of the disaffiliated St Andrews Conservative & Unionist Society have been promoted to top positions in the official Conservative Party youth organisation. The Society is a tightly knit group of students. Many committee members are room-mates and close friends.

James Bundy, Stephen Caulfield and Elliot Jordan have been respectively elected National Chair, National Secretary and East of Scotland Chairman of Conservative Future Scotland,(CFS) representing all members of the Scottish Conservative Party under the age of 30.

The successful candidates believe this is to be no coincidence. Caulfield, a second year studying Economics and IR, said that the Society had a large membership, meaning it carried a greater weight within (CFS) than any of the other university associations.

He added: “Coming from Glasgow and being a great admirer of our greatest PM, Baroness Thatcher, I already know what it feels like to get criticised for my politics – and that’s putting it mildly! St Andrews has been a safe-haven in comparison.”

Bundy, Secretary of the Society, when asked to comment on the disaffiliation from the Student Union said he did not believe that this would be a liability for his tenure as chair of (CFS). Stating: “thankfully the issue is now behind us and we are now in a position to move forward from this as the issue has been entirely resolved.”

He elaborated on his statement claiming that: “with an ever more left-leaning and liberal agenda being promoted around universities in Scotland, we need a strong centre-right voice. In the upcoming year, I want to see Conservative associations standing up and making our voice heard throughout Scotland.

Achieving this by taking a lead role in the campaign against a second independence referendum and the campaign against useless (NUS) ‘policies.’”

Jordan said, “I see no reason why acting to preserve ourselves as a truly Conservative group should cause anything other than congratulation from the rest of (CFS). Conservative students are “an endangered species but this has a hidden benefit of motivating us to get together in tighter-knit, more organised groups.”

A spokesperson for The Scottish Conservatives said it had not taken a stance on the disaffiliation, stating it was a private matter between the Society and the Students’ Association, adding: “the new (CFS) office bearers have to contend with the usual issues faced by Conservative students in liberal-leaning universities.”

 

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3 May 2017: St Andrews University Conservative Society Students in Hostile Confrontation with Visiting Lib Dem Leader

Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron, joined by Willie Rennie and a group of Liberal Democrat activists, walked to the Purdie Building on the North Haugh, with the intention of speaking to locals and students of St Andrews.

Some of those he spoke to seemed impressed by the Liberal Democrat Leader. Others seemed less appreciative of his message. One local woman, who preferred to remain nameless, said that the Liberal Democrats: “have denigrated local politics, have denigrated national politics, and don’t care about Scotland.” She attributed this to the decision of the Liberal Democrats to go into coalition with David Cameron’s Conservative Government in 2010.

A group of St Andrews students, members of the St Andrews University Conservative Society were much more hostile towards Farron’s messages.

One member, Drew Liquerman brandished a sign which read: “Be Lib and Dem, support the will of the people, 52% voted Leave.” The sign was a protest against the Liberal Democrat’s call for a second referendum on the UK’s membership of the European Union.

Liquerman’s protest was speedily blocked by Liberal Democrat members who displayed their own posters. One student, Lavie Rabinowitz, stood next to Liquerman carrying a homemade sign reading: “Don’t listen to him, he voted Trump.”

Minutes later, Farron was drawn into an angry debate with three St Andrews University Conservative Society members in the middle of Market Street The sharp exchange of views was picked up and broadcast live by ITV News as part of their General Election Coverage.

Ian Donnell, St Andrews University Conservative Society, President (leader of the trio that had confronted Barron on market Street) said: “I took an opportunity to ask Tim Farron why he felt he had a mandate to derail the democratic will of the people in the Brexit process when he only had 8 MPs and the choice was so clearly set out on the ballot paper. Leave means leave, but Tim Farron didn’t think so. Despite Britain self governing for centuries, he felt we needed a dossier to describe how this would look prior to the EU referendum. Mr Farron thinks more referenda are necessary, rather than strong and stable leadership to lead us out of the EU.”

 

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http://www.thesaint-online.com/2016/05/st-andrews-conservative-society-under-fire-over-allegations-of-agm-foul-play/
http://www.thesaint-online.com/2016/10/whatever-happened-to-the-st-andrews-conservative-and-unionist-society/
http://www.thesaint-online.com/2016/09/st-andrews-conservative-society-disafilliates-from-students-association/
https://thestand-online.com/2016/12/29/st-andrews-students-join-national-political-organisation/
https://thestand-online.com/2017/05/08/stauca-members-confront-visiting-lib-dems-market-street/
http://www.thesaint-online.com/2016/09/association-investigation-confirms-conservative-society-electoral-fraud/
http://www.pkc.gov.uk/media/39332/DeclarationOfResults-Report-Ward-8-Kinross-Shire-05052017-140744/pdf/DeclarationOfResults_Report_Ward_8_-_Kinross-Shire_05052017_140744

 

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