NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Scottish council election: Former leader Kate Dean loses seat

Kate Dean
Image caption Ms Dean had been the leader of Aberdeen City Council until being ousted from the position in 2009

Election counts have been taking place for seats across the north east and Northern Isles.

Former Aberdeen City Council leader Kate Dean has lost her seat, in a big swing to Labour in the city.

The Liberal Democrat was in charge of the authority when it was forced to make its first round of cuts in 2008.

Orkney Islands Council was the first authority to finish its count, at 10:30, with Independent candidates taking all 21 seats.

Shetland also declared early, returning 22 councillors across its wards.

In Aberdeen, Labour benefited from a collapse in Lib Dem support, jumping from eight to 17 seats.

Labour has opposed the controversial city garden project to redevelop Union Terrace Gardens and said that if it was elected into power it would scrap the £140m project.

The Scottish National Party remained on 15, while the Lib Dems dropped from 11 to five.

The Conservatives are on three seats, up one and there were three Others.

Ms Dean was ousted as the leader of Aberdeen City Council in 2009 after facing a storm of controversy over millions of pounds of cuts to the city's budget.

Aberdeenshire has returned 28 SNP councillors (up seven), 14 Conservatives (up one), 12 Liberal Democrats (down nine), 11 Independents, two Labour and one Green.

Joanna Strathdee, leader of the SNP group, dismissed suggestions her party's success was down to voters deserting the Liberal Democrats.

She said: "We've done really well and I think that's down to us fighting a positive campaign all the way through."

The Lib Dems' Martin Kitts-Hayes said: "I think we need to sell the message much more than we have done."

Ms Strathdee added that nothing was ruled in or out in terms of negotiations to form an administration.

The seat won by the Greens was contested by Martin Ford, the former Lib Dem councillor who opposed Donald Trump's golf resort development.

In Moray, 10 seats went to the SNP, 10 to Independent candidates, three to Labour and three to the Conservatives.

A council spokesman said: "Coalition negotiations are now expected to take place between the groups over the next few days to try and establish a ruling administration group."

One of those who not to get elected in Moray was the SNP's David Stewart, who won Scottish Councillor of the Year last year for his work on the campaign to save RAF Lossiemouth in his ward.

Previously the council was run by an 11-strong Conservative and Independent coalition.

· All the latest election results are available at

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