Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.


  1. MSPs take evidence on the strategic review of STV from the NUJ and BECTU as well as Ofcom.
  2. The first minister faces questions from opposition leaders and backbench MSPs
  3. MSPs back the ministerial appointments following Nicola Sturgeon's reshuffle, after the first minister withdraws Gillian Martin's appointment as education minister

Live Reporting

By Louise Wilson and Craig Hutchison

All times stated are UK

That's all from us on a dramatic final day at Holyrood!

Opposition parties had moved to block Gillian Martin's appointment as a minister
Opposition parties had moved to block Gillian Martin's appointment as a minister

That's all from Holyrood Live on 28 June 2018 and we won't be back until September!

On a dramatic day, the normally humorous ministerial appointment debate was dominated by Nicola Sturgeon's decision to withdraw the nomination of Gillian Martin.

The Scottish government dropped Gillian Martin from its list of new government ministers over an "offensive and inappropriate" blog post.

Ms Martin, named as a junior education minister on Wednesday, wrote about "hairy knuckled lipstick wearing transitional transgender laydees" on her blog.

Opposition parties had questioned Ms Martin's fitness for office.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said she would not put her forward until she had reflected on the "ill-advised" post.

Have a lovely summer recess.

MSP rise for the summer.........with the beach in mind?
MSP rise for the summer.........with the beach in mind?

BreakingMSPs unanimously approve appointments of new cabinet secretaries and ministers


Ms Sturgeon says the increasing size of the government reflects the increasing responsibilities of Holyrood.

The first minister says to Alex Cole-Hamilton that if she'd known he was in the transfer market she may have considered things differently.

She believes the ministers will do Scotland proud and moves her motion.

The parliament duly unanimously approves the appointments of the new cabinet secretaries and the new ministers.

With that Presiding Officer Ken Macintosh congratulates them and wishes members well for the summer recess and hopes they return "well refreshed and reinvigorated" in September.


Ken Macintosh
With a beat of the POs gavel, school's out for summer!

FM was 'genuinely not aware' of Gillian Martin's blog posts

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon thanks members for their good wishes to departing and incoming ministers.

On comments about Ms Martin, she says she takes these "absolutely on the chin".

I was genuinely not aware of the comments made in the blog posts, Ms Sturgeon tells the chamber.

She also suggests MSPs ask themselves if the comments from 2007 reflect the person they have come to know.

All parties should resolve to act quickly when issues arise says Ms Sturgeon and she highlights other parties have failed to take action when other discriminatory comments have arisen.

Lib Dem MSP supports 'very painful decision' to withdraw Gillian Martin's nomination

Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton
Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton

Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton says he supports the first minister in the "very painful decision she took this morning" to withdraw the nomination

I've been doing things that should have seen me sacked by now by Willie Rennie, but he insists I am the only man for the jobs, Mr Cole-Hamilton jokes.

Mr Cole-Hamiltion says the cabinet has increased in size with now, in total, 25 ministers meaning the "former first minister will be spinning in his Kremlin backed studio".

He welcomes Clare Haughey to the role of mental health minister, a priority for the Lib Dems.

He wishes all the cabinet secretaries and ministers well and good luck.

Green MSP welcomes Jeane Freeman to the role of health secretary

Green MSP Andy Wightman
Green MSP Andy Wightman

Green MSP Andy Wightman welcomes ministers to their new roles.

Mr Wightman highlights the group looked "fresh faced and ready to go" on the steps of Bute House and he jokes he looks forward to seeing the same photograph in three years.

He pays tribute to the outgoing ministers, particularly Shona Robison.

The Green MSP welcomes Jeanne Freeman to the role of health secretary.

He welcomes Mike Russell back to the cabinet and says he will bring "panache and show business".

If Ms Martin is not fit to be a minister, is she fit to be an MSP asks Labour MSP

Ms Grant

Turning to education, Ms Grant says Mr Swinney is providing over a system which is seeing declining teacher satisfaction.

On Gillian Martin, the Labour MSP says her words offended every minority group and, while the change of heart is welcome, she says it calls the first minister's judgement into question.

Did the first minister know about these comments before the appointment was made, she asks.

Ms Grant also wonders that if Ms Martin is not fit to be a minister, is she fit to be an MSP?

She concludes by calling for investment, arguing this will bring real change.

Reshuffle was 'long awaited' says Labour MSP

Rhoda Grant standing in the chamber

Labour MSP Rhoda Grant says this was a long-awaited cabinet reshuffle.

It was clear to us a long time ago that something needed to change in the health portfolio, she tells the chamber.

This is the 70th anniversary of the NHS and never in its 70 years had it been in so much peril, Ms Grant states.

The Labour MSP suggests combining the economy and finance briefs indicates the first minister believes the economy is doing fine.

Background: MSP dropped as new minister over 'offensive' blog post

Gillian Martin

The Scottish government has dropped Gillian Martin from its list of new government ministers over an "offensive and inappropriate" blog post.

Ms Martin, named as a junior education minister on Wednesday, wrote about "hairy knuckled lipstick wearing transitional transgender laydees" on her blog.

Opposition parties had questioned Ms Martin's fitness for office.

She said the now-deleted post "did not reflect my view then and certainly does not reflect my view now".

Read more.

'Sadly a reshuffle intended to bury bad news has become bad news'

Mr Carlaw
Mr Carlaw

Mr Carlaw says: "Sadly a reshuffle intended to bury bad news has become bad news."

The Tory MSP highlights the shelving of the Education Bill on the same day.

He criticises the vetting procedure of Gillian Martin and quotes her talking about American Jews and American blacks in terms of tipping in restaurants, which he says is "shocking".

This is a judgement on the first minister herself and this is the most notorious reshuffle in the history of the parliament he says.

This is deeply depressing for parliament that this has happened he says.

Tory MSP pays tribute to departing ministers

Tory MSP Jackson Carlaw
Tory MSP Jackson Carlaw

Tory MSP Jackson Carlaw says this is not the speech he had hoped to make.

All of us were elected to serve in this parliament with the hope of one day becoming a minister, including the Scottish Conservatives who are having to wait longer than most, he jokes.

Mr Carlaw pays tribute to Shona Robison, praising in particular her oversight and steering in of minimum unit pricing.

I welcome a number of the new ministerial appointments, the Tory MSP states, suggesting Mental Health Minister designate Clare Haughey's experience as a mental health nurse will bring "real focus and drive" to the portfolio.

On Humza Yousaf attempts to learn to fly, Mr Carlaw suggests it is good to have a fallback when car insurance has run out!

This of course refers to the new justice secretary driving without insurance in 2016.

Background: Eight new junior ministers appointed to Scottish government

Sturgeon with junior ministers

Nicola Sturgeon's major reshuffle of her government has continued with nine new junior ministers being selected.

Three jiniour ministers returned to the backbenches, while five were kept on.

A further eight - excluding Ms Martin - were announced, all of whom came from the 2016 intake of MSPs.

Read more here.

The first minister moves on to detail and praise her ministerial appointments


The first minister moves on to detail and praise her ministerial appointments.

She points out Kate Forbes will be the first minister born in the same decade as the Scottish Parliament itself!

Ms Forbes will become public finance and digital economy minister.

The first minister points out the cabinet is gender balanced, as is the ministerial team and she moves her motion.


First minister praises her cabinet secretary appointments

First minister

Ms Sturgeon moves to talk about the new justice secretary Humza Yousaf.

The first minister says she first met Mr Yousaf when she gave a speech at his high school!

She pivots to praise the health secretary designate Jeane Freeman.

Ms Sturgeon says: "Jeane is an ideal choice for her new role."

She moves on to praise social security and older people designate Shirley-Anne Somerville, communities and local government secretary Aileen Campbell and Mike Russell who returns to the cabinet in the constitutional relations role.

Background: Shona Robison quits as Nicola Sturgeon reshuffles cabinet

Shona Robison

Scotland's health secretary has quit as Nicola Sturgeon unveiled a major reshuffle of her Scottish government cabinet.

There are five new cabinet secretaries in the first minister's expanded top team, which remains gender balanced.

Shona Robison handed in her resignation as health secretary ahead of the reshuffle being announced.

She will be replaced by Jeane Freeman, with Keith Brown and Angela Constance also quitting the government.

Ms Sturgeon said the "fresh talent" being brought into her government would help "meet the challenges and opportunities facing the country in the months ahead".

Read more here.

BreakingFirst minister confirms withdrawal of Gillian Martin nomination

first minister

The first minister confirms it is with regret she will not ask for approval of the nomination of Gillian Martin.

She says she was not previously aware of all the comments in Ms Martin's blog from 10 years ago and says this content does not reflect the views of the person she knows.

Ms Sturgeon says she will reflect on the appointment.

The first minister nominates the other cabinet secretaries and ministers.

She thanks the outgoing ministers and cabinet secretaries and pays warm tribute to Shona Robison who is leaving her post as health secretary.

New minister appointment debate begins

New cabinet

First minister's questions draws to a close and now MSPs will debate new ministerial appointments.

First minister announces extra funding of more than £1.6m for Scottish Canals

Ms Sturgeon says Scottish Canals are funded mainly by the Scottish government.

She highilights an increase in government funding from £10m to £11.6m.

The first minister announces extra funding of more than £1.6m for Scottish Canals.

Mr Mountain welcomes this but points out the financial difficulties at Scottish Canals and calls for canals across Scotland to be kept open.

Ms Sturgeon insists if she had listened to the Tories on the budget she would not have had the extra money to give to scottish Canals.

Nicola Sturgeon

Background: Transport bosses vow to 'explore' extra funding for Scotland's cash-strapped canals


According to The Herald.........

"Transport bosses have pledged to “explore” a rescue package for Scotland’s canal network amid fears parts of it will close to boats.

"Scottish Canals said a major cash shortage meant maintaining navigation across its routes was “unsustainable”, with barges facing being banished from key sections such as around the world-famous Falkirk Wheel.

"But critics have blasted the plans, insisting it would leave parts of the ancient network no more than “stagnant ditches”.

"They accused those in charge of squandering a £79 million fund to modernise the waterways at the turn of the millennium."

Scottish Canal

Edward Mountain

Tory MSP Edward Mountain asks about Scottish Canal's financial situation.

Concerns about trade war impact on whisky industry raised by SNP MSP

The first minister says the government is very concerned by the US imposition of tarrifs and warns a full scale trade war will hit Scotland.

Ms Sturgeon highlights the potential impact on the whisky industry.

Mr Lochhead calls for the first minister to make representations to the UK government to ask them to protect the industry.

The first minister cites measures to support the whisky industry.

Nichola Sturgeon

Background: EU tariffs on US goods come into force

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and US President Donald Trump
Getty Images
European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and US President Donald Trump

The European Union (EU) has introduced retaliatory tariffs on US goods as a top official launched a fresh attack on President Donald Trump's trade policy.

The duties on €2.8bn (£2.4bn) worth of US goods came into force on Friday.

Tariffs have been imposed on products such as bourbon whiskey, motorcycles and orange juice.

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said duties imposed by the US on the EU go against "all logic and history".

Addressing the Irish parliament in Dublin, he added that "we will do what we have to do to rebalance and safeguard" the EU.

In a tweet on Friday, President Trump threatened to go further by slapping a 20% tariff on all imported EU cars.

Read more.

Trade war between the US and EU

Richard Lochhead

SNP MSP Richard Lochhead seeks an assessment of the potential impact on Scotland of a trade war between the United States and Europe following the recent imposition of new tariffs.

North Sea safety must be 'never, ever compromised' says FM

Tory MSP Liam Kerr highlights the upcoming 30th anniversary of the Piper Alpha disaster.

The first minister says many members across the chamber will remember this tragedy.

She emphasises the need to ensure safety in the North Sea is "never, ever compromised on".

Liam Kerr

Background: McVey calls 'rape clause' an 'opportunity' for victims

Esther McVey
Andrew Cowan

Earlier this year, Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey was criticised for describing the so-called "rape clause" as an opportunity for victims to get help.

The minister was giving evidence to the social security committee at Holyrood.

She told MSPs that sexual assault victims having to give DWP staff details of their ordeal was offering "potentially double support".

The session was disrupted twice by heckling from members of the public.

Read more.

Sturgeon says it is time to get rid of two child cap and the 'rape clause'

Gail Ross

SNP MSP Gail Ross asks about DWP figures showing thousands of families hit by the two child cap and highlights opposition to the "rape clause".

Ms Ross says: "It is time to scrap the cap."

"These statistics are really horrifying," says the first minister.

She says today we see evidence for the first time of the impact of the two child cap and the "rape clause" which she goes on to describe as "horrifying, grotesque and a stain on the Conservatives".

Ms Sturgeon says it is time to get rid of two child cap and the "rape clause".

Carbon dioxide shortage raised by Tory MSP

John Scott

Tory MSP John Scott raises the dwindling stocks of carbon dioxide across Europe, leading to issues in Scotland's food and drinks sector.

Are there interim measures the Scottish government can take to help businesses until normal production is restored, he asks.

The first minister says Rural Economy Secretary Fergus Ewing is currently engaging with the issue.

She then pivots to Brexit, arguing one of the biggest risks to the good and drinks sector in Scotland is export barriers.

First minister accuses Willie Rennie of 'ridiculous hyperbole'

Mr Rennie says it is the policy and the leadership of the NHS that counts and says he is not hearing a commitment to change from Ms Sturgeon.

He pivots to the "crisis" in education and points to the "shambles" of a cancelled Education Bill.

The Scottish Lib Dem leader asks if the first minister can honestly say that now is the time to hit the "independence red button".

The first minister accuses Willie Rennie of "ridiculous hyperbole".

Ms Sturgeon agains cites advances she says the government have made in education.

Willie Rennie

Background: BMA Scotland warns of doctors 'pushed to the brink'

Getty Images

Doctors in Scotland are being "pushed to the brink" by a lack of resources and staff shortages, according to the British Medical Association.

Two thirds of doctors responding to a BMA survey said "inadequate" resources "significantly" affected the quality and safety of care provided by the NHS.

BMA Scotland chairman Dr Peter Bennie said the survey suggested the NHS was being "stretched to the very limit".

The Scottish government said it was committed to improving the NHS.

Read more here.

Rennie criticises government handling of health service

Willie Rennie

Scottish Lib Dem leader WIllie Rennie highlights GP shortages, issues with waiting times in mental health, cancer and A&E, and a "multi-million" shortfall in NHS budgets.

Can the first minister tell us what new policies the new health secretary will now pursue to "clear up this mess", he asks.

The first minister says Mr Rennie has been calling for the health secretary to be changed for weeks and now it has, he is insisting policy - not the health secretary - is the problem.

She provides information on recruitment efforts, including more training placements and investment in reform.

Ms Sturgeon also points to high patient satisfaction.

Harvie calls for more funding for education and praises TIE campaign

Patrick Harvie

Scottish Green Party co-convener Patrick Harvie welcomes the dumping of the Education Bill but calls for more investment in education.

The first minister cites improvements in education including closing of the attainment gap and improvements in literacy and numeracy.

Mr Harvie insists the Scottish government should not push through structural changes instead of funding changes

He highlights this is the third anniversary of the TIE campaign and he welcomes so many TIE ties being worn

Mr Harvie calls for LGBTI inclusive education to be made a reality in Scotland's schools.

Ms Sturgeon says she is very proud to wear the TIE (Time for Inclusive Education) campaign badge today and she praises the campaigners.