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Scottish Parliament election
constituency
Falkirk West
IND Hold
CANDIDATE
PARTY
VOTES
%
+/-%
Dennis Canavan
IND
14703
55.7
+0.7
Michael Matheson
SNP
4703
17.8
+0.0
Lee Whitehill
LAB
4589
17.4
-1.4
Iain Mitchell
CON
1657
6.3
+0.6
Jaqueline Kelly
LD
748
2.8
0.0
MAJORITY 
10000
37.9
TURNOUT 
26400
50.7
ELECTORATE
52122

DESCRIPTION: Falkirk West
The town of Falkirk lies within the boundaries of this seat, which is equi-distant from Glasgow and Edinburgh. It threw off reliance upon agriculture in the eighteenth century when it became an iron-founding town. Today the iron industry is no more, but the seat is still home to industrial towns and villages, involved in heavy vehicle assembly, distilling and new light industries. The area is of historical interest with parts of the Antonine Wall to be found at Bonnybridge.

In 1999 the sitting Labour MP for Falkirk, Dennis Canavan, was blocked from standing for Holyrood by Labour's central selection panel, which claimed he wasnít good enough. He said it was because he was a left-winger unafraid of disagreeing with the leadership. He stood as an independent and won with a majority of over 12,000. Talks with about a return to the party fold broke down and he resigned his Westminster seat in October 2000, triggering a bruising by-election that Labourís Eric Joyce won by only 705 votes. Major Joyce consolidated his victory at the 2001 elections, winning with a majority of 8,532.


PREVIOUS RESULTS
1999 SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT ELECTION
IND WIN
PARTY
VOTES
%
IND
18511
55
LAB
6319
18.8
SNP
5986
17.8
CON
1897
5.6
LD
954
2.8
2001 GENERAL ELECTION
LAB WIN
PARTY
VOTES
%
LAB
16022
51.9
SNP
7490
24.2
CON
2321
7.5
LD
2203
7.1
IND
1464
4.7
SSP
707
2.3
IND
490
1.6
SLP
194
0.6
Vote Scotland 2003

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