General Election 2017: Aberdeen North

The five-horse race for the constituency of Aberdeen North, which takes in Old Aberdeen and the harbour, stretching from the River Don to the city centre.

Labour has only lost the seat twice since World War 1 including the most recent election which saw the SNP take the seat for the first time in its history.

The SNP landslide of 2015 saw Kirsty Blackman win the seat with 56.6% of the vote, giving her a majority of more than 13,000 against former Labour MSP Richard Baker.


Kirsty Blackman Scottish National Party (SNP)

Age: 31

Home: Aberdeen

Job: MP for Aberdeen North since 2015

Previous political experience: Councillor for Hilton, Stockethill and Woodside from 2007-2015. Worked for Brian Adam MSP before being elected to council and then part-time after being elected as councillor.

Non-political experience: Supporter of charity Woolly Hugs, worked in various Aberdeen bars, worked in the Bon Accord Centre selling pasta, worked as a carer. Some of these were while I was a councillor and some before I was elected.

Key issue: Household budgets. Salaries have not been rising but prices have. The generations coming through are set to be poorer than those that went before and I don’t think this is acceptable.

Best quality: I work hard.

Worst quality: I work hard! I find it difficult not to work and so probably don’t have the best of work life balances!

Isobel Davidson Scottish Liberal Democrat

Age: Not given.

Home: Ardlethen, Ellon

Job: Local councillor and wildlife surveyor

Previous political experience: Local councillor since 2007, policy committee convenor, Scottish Liberal Democrats.

Non-political experience: Had a varied career as a pathology laboratory technician, arts and environment project officer, team leader for a youth project, conservation organisation project officer, agricultural and forestry agent and environment planner.

Key issue: Remain in the UK and in Europe. Expanding the economy of the North-east to move away from an oil and gas-based economy.

Best quality: Reliable and easy-going.

Worst quality: Can be impatient.

Richard Durkin Independent

Age: 48

Home: Aberdeen North

Job: Unemployed/freelance offshore surveyor

Previous political experience: Nil

Non-political experience: Offshore surveyor.

Key issue: Trust. Its not okay to maintain a dishonest judiciary.

Best quality: Trustworthiness.

Worst quality: Trusting others.

Grace O’Keeffe Scottish Conservative and Unionist

Age: 24

Home: Aberdeen

Job: Office manager to Alexander Burnett MSP

Previous political experience: Campaign manager for 2015 General Election and 2016 Scottish Parliamentary elections for Alexander Burnett.

Non-political experience: Volunteer for Girlguiding UK.

Key issue: Get the SNP back to the day job and stop their obsession with a second independence referendum.

Best quality: Loyalty, whether it be to my family/friends, my hometown or my party.

Worst quality: Perfectionist – I like to ensure I get every detail correct which can cause me frustration when it doesn’t happen!

Orr Vinegold Scottish Labour Party

Age: 28

Home: Culter

Job: Just left my role as Head of Marketing for Savsé Smoothies

Previous political experience: I have campaigned for the party but this is my first time running.

Non-political experience: I’ve spent the last seven years working for some of the world’s largest brands with experience at Gillette, L’Oreal Paris, Ralph Lauren amongst others managing multimillion pound budgets and large teams.

Key issues: We need to start planning today to meet the economic challenges here in the North-east and to create jobs for the future, and no more divisive referendums!

Best quality: Very determined.

Worst quality: Impatience.

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