20th November 2019
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Tories choose their candidate to fight North Isles seat

, by , in Headlines, News

The Conservatives have named Jamie Halcro Johnston as Tory candidate for Orkney and Shetland in the UK general election on 8th June.

Mr Halcro Johnston, who is self-employed and works between Edinburgh and the family farm in Orkney, has contested the Orkney seat at the last two Scottish Parliament elections.

The 42 year-old works as a freelance consultant and has previously served as an advisor to various Conservative MSPs.

He last stood for election to the UK Parliament in 2005 when he contested the Moray constituency.

But he also stood for election to the Scottish Parliament in 2016 and 2011, when he campaigned unsuccessfully for the Orkney seat. He also stood in 2007 for Inverness East, Nairn and Lochaber.

Mr Halcro Johnston will compete against Alistair Carmichael, who has, as expected, been confirmed as Lib Dem candidate for the isles.

Labour and the SNP have not yet named their candidates for the campaign.

Commenting on his selection, Mr Halcro Johnston said “I’m delighted that the local associations in Orkney and in Shetland have put their trust in me.

“Both the Liberal Democrats and the SNP will predictably try to portray this contest as a two-horse race but, with polling showing one in three people in Scotland are now backing the Scottish Conservatives, this just isn’t the case.

“Whether it’s Ruth Davidson’s robust opposition to the SNP at Holyrood, or Prime Minister Theresa May’s strong stance against Nicola Sturgeon’s calls for a second referendum on independence, it’s the Conservatives who are standing up to the SNP and their divisive plans to break up the United Kingdom.

“At this election, voters in Orkney and Shetland will have a simple choice to make: elect a Conservative MP whose party has respected the democratic decision of the EU referendum and which is now focused on negotiating the best possible deal for the whole of the UK.

“Or vote for a Liberal Democrat candidate whose party is committed to holding yet another referendum, or an SNP candidate whose party wants to break up the UK and take an independent Scotland straight back into the EU – regardless of how bad a deal they’re offered.

“Electing a Conservative MP to represent Orkney and Shetland will also send a clear message to Nicola Sturgeon and the SNP that the Northern Isles value Scotland’s place in the United Kingdom and oppose their divisive plans for a second referendum on independence”.

Chairman of the Shetland Conservative Association, Maurice Mullay said: “In the forthcoming general election, we are delighted to have a Conservative candidate for Orkney and Shetland of the caliber, quality and experience of Jamie Halcro Johnston.

“It is gratifying to have as the Conservative candidate, a born and bred islander with an outstanding understanding of island industries and issues and an exceptional understanding of local and national politics.

“His business background, ability, confidence, and enthusiasm for the tasks ahead, are a tremendous asset.

“Jamie will be a strong voice for Shetland and, as our Conservative MP, will make sure Shetland’s issues and concerns are always raised at the heart of government.”


  1. John Tulloch

    It certainly isn’t a 2-horse race. The 43 percent of Shetlanders who voted Leave will not get what they want from any of the other serious contenders, while the 57 percent Remain vote will be split between the LibDems and the SNP.

    Just as some Remainers will vote Tory, the Leavers may not all want to do that but for those to whom leaving the EU is a big issue, that would appear to be their only serious option.

    • Graham Fleming

      That’s not John Tulloch w ho was campaigning for Shetland Freedom a few months back or maybe I am mistaken maybe there’s more than one.To fit into Westminster realpolitik, halve the public sector would have to go and the Shetland oil fund would soon be privatised amongst the faithful. But I am sure those who blindly follow the Westminster gospel will want to make the new Shetland in its own image and bring back Lord Lerwick -Norman LaMont as the new messiah and saviour.The non believers and non daily express readers – hell and damnation!

      • Brian Smith

        The autonomy ‘movements’ in Shetland have always had some Tory admirers. One of the most curious manifestations of that was the way that many of them fell hopelessly in love in the 1980s with the late Peter Walker, agriculture and energy minister and scourge of the miners.


      John, you make the mistake (or maybe it’s wishful thinking?) of assuming that folk will think only of brexit on 8th June – the electorate doesn’t vote on a single issue like that. For a start, they will want to look for the candidate who can best serve the constituency. Second, they will look at the record of different parties – and when it comes to the Conservatives their record as the party of government is clear: apart from the fact that they have no plan for brexit, they have acted to cut support for those in society least able to defend themselves.

      For anyone who doesn’t want to vote Tory, there is only one party in Westminster which has been able to act as a credible and forceful opposition in the last parliament and that is the SNP.

  2. Brian Smith

    Is this a paper candidate?

  3. Peter Hamilton

    Or John, if they like poor services, low taxation, small government, and the company of like minded folk, they could move to Forvik and take Ian Tinkler with them… so long as there is no broadband connection there 😉