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SNP’s Drew Hendry concedes defeat in Inverness, Skye and West Ross-shire constituency election

By Philip Murray

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Drew Hendry at the count earlier on Friday. Picture: Callum Mackay.
Drew Hendry at the count earlier on Friday. Picture: Callum Mackay.

The SNP’s Drew Hendry has conceded defeat in his bid to be re-elected as an MP.

Mr Hendry, who represented the former Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey constituency for nine years, had been contesting the new Inverness, Skye and West Ross-shire seat, which was created following boundary changes ahead of this month’s General Election.

However, he faced stiff opposition from Lib-Dem hopeful Angus MacDonald.

The seat is the last to declare in the UK, and has yet to do so after the count was delayed until Saturday after vote numbers between the initial count and a second recount did not match.

However, although the final count is still to take place, it was reported that it was being privately acknowledged that Mr MacDonald likely had the votes necessary to win the seat - and Mr Hendry was not planning to attend Saturday’s second recount due to prior commitments.

The SNP hopeful has now issued comments this evening conceding that he has failed to secure sufficient votes to return to Westminster.

“It has been an absolute joy to serve the people of Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey for the past nine years,” he said. “I am obviously disappointed not to be continuing that representation under the new Inverness, Skye and West Ross-shire boundary and wish the new MP every success in his new role.

“People need an MP who will fight for their needs both local and at UK level and during this cost-of-living crisis, they have never needed help and assistance more.

“The second recount is obviously an extraordinary situation that couldn’t have been predicted and it’s frustrating and disappointing that I cannot attend, but I have an unmovable prior commitment.

“I would like to use this opportunity to publicly thank the constituents I’ve proudly served for their support, my fabulous and hard-working constituency team, our amazing campaign volunteers and my ever-supportive family.

“The council, emergency staff and our local postal workers have been under incredible pressure in this election and my team, and I are thankful for all they have done and for the work they have yet to do.

“To everyone - we have so much to be proud of here in the Highlands. Our region has opportunity in abundance and a fantastic reputation, and I will continue to work with others to realise that potential and improve outcomes for people living and working here.”

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