The seat stretches from the Grampian Mountains in Royal Deeside to the coastal villages of Newtonhill and St Cryrus including Balmoral and some of the well-off oil industry commuter belt of Aberdeen.
It holds some spectacular scenery, such as the Cairngorm Mountains, which attracts tourists in droves, has many farming communities and, thanks to the river Dee, has some of the finest salmon fishing in the country.
Conservative minister and pro-devolutionist Alick Buchanan-Smith represented this seat from 1964 until his death in 1991. The Liberal Democrats’ Nicol Stephen won it at the resulting by-election, but was MP for only five months until the Conservatives re-took Kincardine & Deeside (as it was called then) at the 1992 election.
Sir Robert Smith won it back for the Liberal Democrats from Scottish office minister George Kynoch at the 1997 General Election.
Mike Rumbles won the seat for the Lib Dems at the 1999 Scottish Parliament election.