Polling stations open across the north as Scotland choosing next government
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Polls have finally opened for the 2021 Scottish Parliamentary elections with residents in the Badenoch and Strathspey being balloted for the two local constituencies.
Polling stations across the region are open from 7am to 10pm and with the strath straddling two seats voters will be able to cast a ballot in one of two seats.
The Inverness and Nairn seat extends to include Strathspey and outh of that is the massive Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch constituency.
Voters will also be asked to cast a ballot for the Highlands and Islands list seats, which will see seven MSP represent the region as a whole.
A large number of people have already cast postal votes due to the ongoing restrictions but many still prefer to attend the polling stations which are open from 7am to 10pm.
To cast a ballot you must be registered to vote at an address in Scotland, aged 16 or over on the day of the election, a British or Irish citizen, or of a third country with permission to stay in the UK or one who does not need permission to stay.
Counting will only begin, due to Covid restrictions, on Friday morning at 9am with the constituency seats due to be announced later that day. The regional seats will only be confirmed on Saturday.
The Inverness and Nairn candidates are:
- Ariane Burgess (Scottish Greens)
- Fergus Ewing (SNP)
- Rhoda Grant (Scottish Labour Party)
- David Gregg (Scottish Liberal Democrats)
- Andrew MacDonald (Restore Scotland)
- Edward Mountain (Scottish Conservatives)
The Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch candidates are:
- John Erskine (Scottish Labour)
- Kate Forbes (SNP)
- Jamie Halcro Johnston (Scottish Conservative)
- Denis Rixson (Scottish Liberal Democrat)
Running for a seat representing the Highland and Islands region are two independent candidates and a total of 15 parties:
- Hazel Mansfield, Independent candidate
- Andy Wightman, Independent candidate
- Abolish the Scottish Parliament Party
- Alba Party
- All For Unity
- Freedom Alliance- Integrity, Society, Economy
- Reform UK
- Restore Scotland
- Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party
- Scottish Family Party
- Scottish Green Party
- Scottish Labour Party
- Scottish Liberal Democrats
- Scottish Libertarian Party
- Scottish National Party (SNP)
- Scottish Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition
- UK Independence Party (Ukip)