Co-op Party announces Scottish Parliament and Welsh Assembly candidates

The Co-operative Party has announced the details of the Labour / Co-operative candidates standing for seats in the regional elections taking place in Wales and Scotland in May....

The Co-operative Party has announced the details of the Labour / Co-operative candidates standing for seats in the regional elections taking place in Wales and Scotland in May.

Since 1927 the Co-operative Party has had an electoral agreement with the Labour Party, which means that in elections candidates stand as joint Labour/Co-op candidates. However, the Co-operative Party is an independent party, with its own membership, staff, national executive committee and policy platform.

Following devolution referendums in both countries in 1997, the National Assembly for Wales and the new Scottish parliament were established in 1998. Elections for each took place every four years, but in 2015 this clashed with the UK general election. Scottish and Welsh elections were postponed until 5 May 2016 and will now take place every five years.

At the Welsh Assembly elections, the Co-operative Party will be hoping to secure its largest ever group of AMs. It currently has nine members in the Assembly, seven of whom will be standing for re- election. In North Wales, Ann Jones AM will be defending a narrow majority in the Vale of Clwyd and Julia Dobson will be contesting Ynys Mon. In Mid and West Wales, Lee Waters will be the Party’s candidate in Llanelli, which Labour gained from Plaid Cymru in 2011 with a 0.3% majority. Mary Wimbury will be campaigning right across North Wales as the number one list candidate.

Welsh Assembly building, Cardiff Bay
Welsh Assembly building, Cardiff Bay

In South Wales West the Party is working to elect Rebecca Evans in Gower, Jeremy Miles in Neath and Huw Irranca-Davies in Ogmore. Ceri Reeves is the number one candidate on the regional list.

Across South Wales Central, Mick Antoniw, current chair of the Co-operative Party’s Assembly Group is its candidate in Pontypridd, and Vaughan Gething will be defending his seat in Cardiff South and Penarth. Anna McMorrin will be number three on the regional list.

In South Wales East the Party is proposing John Griffiths in Newport East, Lynne Neagle in Torfaen and Alun Davies in Blaenau Gwent, all defending their seats, and a new candidate – Rhianon Passmore – in Islwyn. Debbie Wilcox is their candidate on the regional list.

In Scotland the Co-operative Party is currently represented by four Labour/Co-op MSPs, all standing for re-election: Claudia Beamish (South of Scotland); James Kelly (Glasgow); former leaders of the Scottish Labour Party, Johann Lamont (Glasgow); and Kezia Dugdale (Lothian), leader of the Scottish Labour Party. Thirteen other Labour/Co-op candidates are standing for election.

Another candidate for Glasgow is Bill Butler. For Highlands and Islands the party is supporting Rhoda Grant and David Stewart while Sarah Boyack and Lesley Hinds will also stand for Lothian. In Mid Scotland and Fife the two candidates proposed by the party are Cara Hilton and Mary Lockhart. Richard McCready is also standing for North East Scotland. West Scotland will see four Labour/Co-op candidates standing for election: Neil Bibby, Ken Macintosh, Joe Cullinane and Siobhan McCready. Linda Gow will represent the Co-operative Party in the Central Scotland region.

Each region will elect seven MSPs. Following recent reforms within the Scottish Labour Party, current serving MSPs do not automatically get the top spot on each list, apart from leader Kezia Dugdale, and deputy leader Alex Rowley, who is standing for the Labour Party. Members in each region will vote on the shortlisted candidates to decide which will be the order on each list. However, the lists may be adjusted to ensure a 50/50 gender split, in line with the Scottish Labour Party’s reforms.

In this article

Join the Conversation