Labour unveils candidates for next year’s council elections

Labour Party branches from the Motherwell/Wishaw and Mossend/Holytown areas held meetings in Dalziel High School in Motherwell to select the 15 candidates to stand in next May’s North Lanarkshire Council elections.

A total of 11 sitting Labour councillors were returned as candidates: Motherwell North councillors Helen McKenna, Annita McAuley and Peter Nolan; Motherwell West councillors Michael Ross and Paul Kelly; Motherwell South East and Ravenscraig councillors Kaye Harmon and Tom Lunny; Mossend and Holytown councillor James Coyle; Wishaw councillors Sam Love and Frank McKay; and Murdonstoun councillor Nicky Shevlin.

The other candidates are:

Gary O’Rourke, chairman of the constituency Labour party, who will be looking to win a third seat for Labour in Motherwell South East and Ravenscraig.

Gary runs his own construction/development business and is married to Denise with three children.

Central Scotland list MSP Mark Griffin’s parliamentary researcher Frank McNally from Bellshill has been chosen to stand in Mossend and Holytown following the de-selection and subsequent resignation from the party of sitting councillor Kevin McKeown.

Frank attended Cardinal Newman High before graduating from the University of Strathclyde and is currently vice-president of Holytown Bowling Club.

Alan Clinch, treasurer of the constituency Labour party, will be standing in Murdostoun following the retiral of long serving councillor Jimmy Martin.

Alan works for a major IT company and his family comes from Newmains.

Following his election to the Scottish Parliament as Motherwell and Wishaw MSP John Pentland will give up his Wishaw seat which will be contested by Jim Robertson, secretary of the constituency Labour party, and Unison activist.

Jim lives and works in Wishaw in the public housing sector providing support and advice.

Meanwhile, the local branch of the Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill constituency Labour party met in the Scottish Lithuanian Club in Mossend to unanimously return sitting Bellshill councillors Harry Curran and Harry McGuigan as candidates.

As revealed in the Times & Speaker last week the Thorniewood branch have returned sitting councilors Jim McCabe and Bob Bourrows as candidates, despite the challenge of local trade union activist Hugh Gaffney.