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Results & Constituencies
 Caithness Sutherland & Easter Ross
Other Liberal Democrat hold
Name Party Votes % +/- %
John Thurso Liberal Democrat 9,041 36.4 +0.8
Michael Meighan Labour 6,297 25.3 -2.5
John MacAdam SNP 5,273 21.2 -1.8
Robert Rowantree Conservative 3,513 14.1 +3.3
Karn Mabon Scottish Socialist 544 2.2  
James Campbell Independent 199 0.8  
Majority 2,744 11.0
Turnout 24,867 60.3 -9.7
Against 1997 General Election 1.6% from Labour to Liberal Democrat
Lab-Con (against 1997) 2.9% from Labour to Conservative
Against 1999 devolution poll 2.9% from Liberal Democrat to Labour

This is the northernmost constituency on mainland Britain and covers a vast but sparsely populated area - the electorate is about 13,000 short of the Scottish average.

Caithness forms the northern tip of this seat, and is made up of farming and fishing communities around the two main towns of Thurso and Wick.

Dounreay nuclear power station is also located here, and tourism is helped by the presence of John O'Groats.

The mountains and moorland of Sutherland, to the west and south, are bleaker in appearance, but also attract considerable numbers of holidaymakers captivated by countryside that, if rugged, is undoubtedly of some beauty.

The Easter Ross element of the seat is much the smallest in terms of area but is far more densely populated, including the fairly large town of Invergordon, home to many workers in oil-related industries and the remnants of the smelter and Nigg yard workforces.

The current MP Bob MacLennan has represented three different parties since his election in 1966, in turn Labour, the SDP and the Liberal Democrats, but has decided to step down at this election.

Past Results

1997 General Election
 Caithness Sutherland & Easter Ross
Liberal Democrat hold
Name Party Votes %
Robert Maclennan Liberal Democrat 10,381 35.6
James Hendry Labour 8,122 27.8
Euan Harper SNP 6,710 23.0
Tom Miers Conservative 3,148 10.8
Carolyn Ryder Referendum 369 1.3
John Martin Green 230 0.8
Martin Carr UK Independence 212 0.7
Majority 2,259 7.7
Turnout 29,172 70.0
1999 Scottish Parliamentary Election
 Caithness Sutherland & Easter Ross
Liberal Democrat win
Name Party Votes %
Jamie Stone Liberal Democrat 10,691 41.1
James Hendry Labour 6,300 24.2
Jean Urquhart SNP 6,035 23.2
Richard Jenkins Conservative 2,167 8.3
James Campbell Independent 554 2.1
Ewen Stewart Independent 282 1.1
Majority 4,391 16.9
Turnout 26,029 62.0