Stephen Flynn: Who is the SNP's new Westminster leader?

Flynn will replace Ian Blackford as leader of the party's MPs in the House of Commons.

Stephen Flynn has been appointed as the SNP’s new leader at Westminster following the resignation of Ian Blackford.

The SNP Westminster parliamentary group made the announcement after their AGM on Tuesday evening.

His deputy at Westminster will be Mhairi Black, the MP for Paisley and Renfrewshire South – who takes over from Kirsten Oswald.

Flynn’s appointment comes just two weeks after he denied rumours he would be standing for the leadership position, following speculation in news articles he was “mounting a coup” against Blackford, who resigned last week.

Announcing his candidacy, Flynn said: “Few working class folk ever make it to parliament, fewer still run to be political leaders.

“Even fewer do so having spent almost the entirety of their teenage and adult years battling a physical disability.

“Your experiences tend to shape you and I am no different.”

Both Flynn and his parliamentary colleague Alison Thewliss, who stood against him in the race to succeed Blackford, have hit out at Westminster culture.

“We have the people, the skills and the know how – we just need the power,” said Flynn.

“Because the answers to the problems we face don’t lie in Westminster. The Tories will keep shredding our relationship with Europe and the Labour Party will cheer them on.”

Flynn went to school in both Brechin and Dundee before studying history and politics at the University of Dundee.

He was elected to Aberdeen City Council in 2015 and served as leader of the SNP group at the local authority from 2016 until 2019, when he was elected as an MP for Aberdeen South.

He succeeded Ross Thomson in his seat after Thomson declined to stand again for parliament.

The 34-year-old was immediately appointed to the role of shadow chief financial secretary to the Treasury. In 2021, he was promoted to the front bench as SNP spokesperson for business, energy and industrial strategy.

Flynn has suffered from a serious condition called avascular necrosis since his teens and underwent surgery for it two years ago.

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