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Donald Dewar Wednesday, 25 October, 2000, 20:53 GMT 21:53 UK
Dewar by-elections date revealed
Anniesland Cross
Donald Dewar was the MP and MSP for Anniesland
The date has been announced for the two by-elections caused by the death of Scottish First Minister Donald Dewar

Mr Dewar held the Scottish Parliament and Westminster seats for the constituency of Glasgow Anniesland and the by-elections have been scheduled for Thursday, 23 November.

The date for the Scottish Parliament by-election was announced by Presiding Officer Lord Steel.

Lord Steel said he had discussed a proposal with the four main party leaders in Scotland that, "for the convenience of Anniesland", he would choose whatever date was decided for the Westminster by-election.

Donald Dewar
Mr Dewar died of a brain haemorrhage
"That of course is a matter for the chief whip of the party which holds the seat at Westminster," said Lord Steel.

"Although the writ for the Westminster by-election has not yet been moved, I have been told that it is intended to be moved so that the election is held on Thursday, 23 November."

The notice of election for the Holyrood seat was published by returning officer James Andrews at Glasgow's City Chambers on Wednesday.

Nominations are due to close on Wednesday, 1 November.

Lord Steel said: "I have informed all MSPs that this will also be the polling date for our parliamentary by-election."

Comfortable majority

Mr Dewar, 63, died from a brain haemorrhage earlier this month after a fall outside his official Edinburgh residence, Bute House.

He had held the Anniesland seat since winning a by-election in 1978, when it was known as Glasgow Garscadden, and was elected to the Scottish Parliament in last year's inaugural elections.

He held a comfortable majority of 15,154 for the Westminster seat, but his winning margin at Holyrood was a narrower 10,993, with the Scottish National Party taking second place in both polls.

As well as Glasgow Anniesland, a Westminster by-election is also looming in Falkirk West, where Denis Canavan has announced he intends to stand down.

Mr Canavan was elected to that seat as a Labour MP.

After a row with the Labour Party over his non-selection as a Labour candidate in the Scottish Parliament elections, he went on to stand for the same constituency as an Independent and won with a massive majority.

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18 Oct 00 | Donald Dewar
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