Edinburgh Central
burgh constituency
for the Scottish Parliament
Edinburgh Central (Scottish Parliament constituency).svg
Lothian (Scottish Parliament electoral region).svg
Edinburgh Central shown within the Lothian electoral region and the region shown within Scotland
Population94,040 (2019)[1]
Current constituency
Created1999
PartyScottish National Party
MSPAngus Robertson
Council areaCity of Edinburgh

Edinburgh Central is a burgh constituency of the Scottish Parliament (Holyrood) covering part of the council area of Edinburgh. It elects one Member of the Scottish Parliament (MSP) by the plurality (first past the post) method of election. It is also one of nine constituencies in the Lothian electoral region, which elects seven additional members, in addition to the nine constituency MSPs, to produce a form of proportional representation for the region as a whole.

The constituency was created with the name and boundaries of a constituency of the Edinburgh Central UK Parliament constituency. Since 1999, the constituency MSP has been an ex officio member of the board of trustees of the National Library of Scotland. From 1925 until 1999, that role had been taken by the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Westminster constituency.[citation needed]

The constituency was one of the few areas to vote "Yes" in the 2011 UK Alternative Vote referendum held on the same day as the 2011 Scottish Parliament election.

The seat has been held by Angus Robertson of the Scottish National Party since the 2021 Scottish Parliament election.

Electoral region

See also: Lothian (Scottish Parliament electoral region)

The other eight constituencies of the Lothian region are Almond Valley, Edinburgh Eastern, Edinburgh Northern and Leith, Edinburgh Pentlands, Edinburgh Southern, Edinburgh Western, Linlithgow and Midlothian North and Musselburgh.

The region includes all of the City of Edinburgh council area, parts of the East Lothian council area, parts of the Midlothian council area and all of the West Lothian council area.

Constituency boundaries and council area

Edinburgh is represented in the Scottish Parliament by six constituencies: Edinburgh Central, Edinburgh Eastern, Edinburgh Northern and Leith, Edinburgh Pentlands, Edinburgh Southern and Edinburgh Western.

The Edinburgh Central constituency was created at the same time as the Scottish Parliament, in 1999, with the name and boundaries of an existing Westminster constituency. In 2005, however, Scottish Westminster (House of Commons) constituencies were mostly replaced with new constituencies.[2]

As part of the First Periodic Review of Scottish Parliament Boundaries the boundaries of the constituency were changed before the 2011 Scottish Parliament election. Each electoral ward used in the creation of the redrawn Central is split, shared with neighbouring constituencies.[3]

Constituency profile and voting patterns

Constituency profile

The Edinburgh Central constituency is situated in the central-north of the City of Edinburgh. The constituency is a major tourist, financial and retail centre, covering Edinburgh's Old and New Towns, Princes Street, Haymarket, Edinburgh Castle, Holyrood Castle and the Scottish Parliament building itself.

The north and west of the constituency is very affluent, covering Victorian suburbs such as Craigleith, Murrayfield, Stockbridge and Orchard Brae, in addition to Edinburgh's well-off West End. There is some deprivation towards the south and east of the constituency around Dalry, Dumbiedykes and in patches of Edinburgh's Old Town, although overall the constituency is very affluent.[4]

Voting patterns

In the 2007 City of Edinburgh local council election, the Liberal Democrats emerged as the largest party in wards covered by the Edinburgh Central constituency. In the 2012 local election, the Conservatives and Scottish National Party formed the two largest parties in the area. The Conservatives were ahead in 6 of the 8 electoral wards covering the Edinburgh Central constituency in the 2017 City of Edinburgh local council election.

Traditionally this constituency has been represented by the Labour Party, with the Liberal Democrats forming the main opposition. From the formation of the Scottish Parliament in 1999 until the 2011 Scottish Parliament election, the constituency of Edinburgh Central was represented by Labour's Sarah Boyack. With a re-arrangement of the constituency boundaries in 2011, which would have been won by the Liberal Democrats in 2007, the constituency narrowly returned the SNP's Marco Biagi, who gained the constituency with a slender majority of 237 votes. In 2016 the Leader of the Scottish Conservative Party, Ruth Davidson, gained the constituency from the SNP with a majority of 610 votes.

In the UK Parliament, the Edinburgh Central constituency was represented by the Labour Party almost continuously from the 1945 UK general election until the constituency was abolished in 2005, voting Conservative once in 1983.

Member of the Scottish Parliament

Election Member Party
1999 Sarah Boyack Labour
2011 Marco Biagi SNP
2016 Ruth Davidson Conservatives
2021 Angus Robertson SNP

Election results

2020s

2021 Scottish Parliament election: Edinburgh Central[5][6][7]
Party Candidate Constituency Regional
Votes % ±% Votes % ±%
SNP Angus Robertson 16,276 39.0 Increase10.4 12,476 29.9 Increase3.7
Conservative Scott Douglas 11,544 27.7 Decrease2.7 9,766 23.4 Decrease5.7
Labour Maddy Kirkman 6,839 16.4 Decrease5.7 6,866 16.4 Decrease0.8
Green Alison Johnstone[a] 3,921 9.4 Decrease4.2 7,604 18.2 Increase1.2
Liberal Democrats Bruce Wilson 2,555 6.1 Increase1.2 3,075 7.4 Increase1.4
Independent Bonnie Prince Bob 363 0.9 New
Alba 639 1.5 New
All for Unity 279 0.7 New
Animal Welfare 179 0.4 New
Women's Equality 161 0.4 Decrease1.8
Scottish Family 154 0.4 New
Freedom Alliance 102 0.2 New
Libertarian Tam Laird 137 0.3 Steady0.0 93 0.2 New
Communist 90 0.2 New
Reform UK 88 0.2 New
Independent Ashley Graczyk 75 0.2 New
Abolish the Scottish Parliament 48 0.1 New
SDP 33 0.1 New
UKIP Donald Mackay 78 0.2 New 30 0.1 Decrease1.1
Renew 18 0.0 New
Majority 4,732 11.3 N/A
Valid Votes 41,713 41,776
Invalid Votes 121 59
Turnout 41,834 62.7 Increase5.2 41,835 62.7 Increase5.2
SNP gain from Conservative Swing Increase6.6
Notes
  1. ^ Incumbent member on the party list, or for another constituency

2010s

2016 Scottish Parliament election: Edinburgh Central[8][9]
Party Candidate Constituency Regional
Votes % ±% Votes % ±%
Conservative Ruth Davidson[a] 10,399 30.4 Increase15.4 9,946 29.1 Increase13.2
SNP Alison Dickie 9,789 28.6 Decrease4.1 8,962 26.2 Decrease3.8
Labour Sarah Boyack[a] 7,546 22.1 Decrease9.8 5,899 17.3 Decrease2.3
Green Alison Johnstone[b] 4,644 13.6 New 5,799 17.0 Increase2.6
Liberal Democrats Hannah Bettsworth 1,672 4.9 Decrease15.6 2,048 6.0 Decrease3.7
Women's Equality 743 2.2 New
UKIP 395 1.2 Increase0.6
RISE 284 0.8 New
Libertarian Tom Laird 119 0.3 New
Solidarity 90 0.3 Increase0.1
Majority 610 1.8 N/A
Valid Votes 34,169 34,166
Invalid Votes 107 68
Turnout 34,276 57.5 Increase3.0 34,234 57.5 Increase2.8
Conservative gain from SNP Swing
Notes
  1. ^ a b Incumbent member on the party list, or for another constituency
  2. ^ Elected on the party list
2011 Scottish Parliament election: Edinburgh Central[10][11][12]
Party Candidate Constituency Region
Votes % ±% Votes % ±%
SNP Marco Biagi 9,480 32.7 N/A 8,768 30.0 N/A
Labour Sarah Boyack[a] 9,243 31.9 N/A 5,716 19.6 N/A
Liberal Democrats Alex Cole-Hamilton 5,937 20.5 N/A 2,849 9.7 N/A
Conservative Iain McGill 4,354 15.0 N/A 4,659 15.9 N/A
Green 4,213 14.4 N/A
Independent Margo MacDonald[b] 1,988 6.8 N/A
All-Scotland Pensioners Party 236 0.8 N/A
UKIP 182 0.6 N/A
Scottish Socialist 145 0.5 N/A
Socialist Labour 105 0.4 N/A
BNP 97 0.3 N/A
Liberal 71 0.2 N/A
Scottish Christian 68 0.2 N/A
CPA 44 0.2 N/A
Solidarity 46 0.2 N/A
Independent Ken O'Neil 24 0.1 N/A
Independent David Hogg 14 0.0 N/A
Independent Mev Brown 5 0.0 N/A
Majority 237 0.8 N/A
Valid Votes 29,014 29,230
Invalid Votes 224 90
Turnout 29,238 54.5 N/A 29,320 54.7 N/A
SNP win (new boundaries)
Notes
  1. ^ Incumbent member for this constituency
  2. ^ Incumbent member on the party list, or for another constituency

2000s

2007 Scottish Parliament election: Edinburgh Central
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Sarah Boyack 9,155 31.1 -1.3
Liberal Democrats Siobhan Mathers 7,962 27.1 +4.2
SNP Shirley-Anne Somerville 7,496 25.5 +7.8
Conservative Fiona Houston 4,783 16.3 -0.8
Majority 1,193 4.0 -5.5
Turnout 29,396 52.9 +6.8
Labour hold Swing -2.8
2003 Scottish Parliament election: Edinburgh Central
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Labour Sarah Boyack 9,066 32.4 −5.6
Liberal Democrats Andy Myles 6,400 22.9 +6.2
SNP Kevin Pringle 4,965 17.7 −8.0
Conservative Peter Finnie 4,802 17.1 +1.0
Scottish Socialist Catriona Grant 2,552 9.1 +6.9
Scottish People's James O'Neill 229 0.8 New
Majority 2,666 9.5 −2.9
Turnout 28,014 46.1 −10.6
Labour hold Swing -6.0

1990s

1999 Scottish Parliament election: Edinburgh Central
Party Candidate Votes %
Labour Sarah Boyack 14,224 38.0
SNP Ian McKee 9,598 25.7
Liberal Democrats Andy Myles 6,187 16.5
Conservative Jacqui Low 6,018 16.1
Scottish Socialist Kevin Williamson 830 2.2
Majority 4,626 12.4
Turnout 36,857 56.7
Labour win (new seat)

See also

Footnotes

  1. ^ Scottish Parliamentary Constituency (SPC) Population Estimates (2011 Data Zone based), National Records of Scotland; retrieved 6 May 2021 (accompanying summary notes)
  2. ^ See The 5th Periodical Report of the Boundary Commission for Scotland Archived September 21, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ "First Periodic Review of Scottish Parliament Boundaries Final Report" (PDF). Boundaries Scotland. May 2010. p. 138. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  4. ^ "SIMD (Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation) 2016". Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation 2016.
  5. ^ "Edinburgh Central constituency results". City of Edinburgh Council. 6 May 2021. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  6. ^ "Edinburgh Central regional results". City of Edinburgh Council. 6 May 2021. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  7. ^ "Constituencies A-Z: Edinburgh Central". BBC News. Retrieved 7 May 2021.
  8. ^ "Edinburgh Central Constituency". City of Edinburgh Council. 5 May 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  9. ^ "Lothian regional results". City of Edinburgh Council. 5 May 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  10. ^ "Central MSP Constituency Results 2011". City of Edinburgh Council. 5 May 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  11. ^ "2011 Results of Regional List". City of Edinburgh Council. 5 May 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2021.
  12. ^ "Results and turnout at the 2011 Scottish Parliament election". Electoral Commission. Retrieved 3 June 2021.