The Scottish National Party (SNP) has again emerged as the largest party in council elections, with Labour finishing in second place after the Scottish Conservatives suffered heavy losses.
After all 32 of Scotland’s local authorities declared results, the SNP had won 453 seats, up 22, while Labour were on 282, up 20. The Tories finished on 214 seats, down 62.
The SNP were declared the largest party in the election for Glasgow City Council following a tense battle with Labour.
Nicola Sturgeon’s party also secured an overall majority in Dundee, while Labour won control of West Dunbartonshire.
Sturgeon said “I am thrilled and very proud at the SNP result today.
“After 15 years in government, we’ve not only won this election overwhelmingly, we’ve increased our share of the vote.”Nicola Sturgeon, First Minister
“After 15 years in government, we’ve not only won this election overwhelmingly, we’ve increased our share of the vote, increased the number of councillors that we elected and I think we’re the largest party with more councillors today than we were yesterday, so it’s a stupendous result for the SNP.
“I think it is down to the fact that people across the country who vote SNP – they don’t think we’re perfect, no government, no party, is but when they judge the performance of the SNP and, then when they judge that against our opponents, they like how we govern Scotland – nationally and locally – and they have trust and confidence in us to take the country forward and to address the challenges that the country faces.”
The SNP were also the largest party in Edinburgh as the Lib Dems and the Greens made significant gains.
Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross said: “It’s been a difficult night and the results coming in today are very disappointing.”
When asked whether he believes Boris Johnson should lead the Conservatives into the next general election, Ross said: “The Prime Minister simply can’t ignore the message that’s been sent from voters not just here in Scotland, but across the UK.
“The Conservatives lost Westminster Council last night – that’s a council that even in the peak Labour years under Tony Blair the party held on to – so there’s been a very strong message from the public to the Prime Minister and to the party.”
Meanwhile, Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar declared “the Ruth Davidson project is dead”, as his party celebrated gains in Glasgow City Council.
On a day which saw Conservative losses up and down the UK in local government elections, Sarwar added that “the nasty Tories are back”, following previous Conservative success under former leader Davidson.
“It’s been almost a decade and it’s the first time we’ve had a cheerful day for the Scottish Labour party,” he said.
“It’s a good day, we’ve made good progress. I think by the end of the day we will be in a good second both in terms of vote share and in terms of seats.”
He added that there must be a coalition built in time for the next general election in order to “boot Boris Johnson out” of Downing Street – a vote which he said will be “Boris versus Britain”.