SNP selects Wills as by-election candidate
Tom Wills has been picked as the SNP candidate for Shetland’s upcoming by-election.
Wills was selected following voting by SNP members on Friday and a hustings on Wednesday night.
Two candidates had been in the running: Wills and Fergus Mutch, an Aberdonian and the SNP’s head of communications and research.
Wills is the son of former councillor Jonathan Wills and retired Shetland teacher Lesley Roberts.
Born and raised in Shetland, Wills currently works at tidal energy company, Nova Innovation, where he manages offshore operations on the Shetland Tidal Array in Bluemull Sound.
He has also worked on projects at the European Marine Energy Centre in Orkney, before representing Orcadian firm Aquatera on marine energy projects in South America and South East Asia.
Speaking about his selection, Wills said: “I am honoured to be standing as the SNP candidate in Shetland – it’s a great privilege to be given the opportunity to represent the community that I call home.
“Growing up in Shetland was a fantastic experience – this is where my wife and I want to raise our family and I would love to help ensure that Shetland continues to provide a great start for future generations.
“Shetland is ready for change – we need an MSP who will work constructively with the Scottish Government to ensure that our voice is heard loud and clear.
“The SNP has been working hard for Shetland: building more houses, increasing the size of our NHS workforce and improving local schools.
“But, of course, I know there’s more work to do to improve local ferry services, raise attainment in schools, protect the most vulnerable in our society and help local businesses to thrive.
“I am convinced that offshore renewable energy projects – particularly floating offshore wind and tidal – can bring a green jobs boom to the isles. With more local control of the seabed, the benefits to our community could be enormous. We can be a global leader in fighting climate change.
“This election is also an opportunity for the people of Shetland to send a message that we won’t stand for this Brexit process that completely ignores the needs of our islands and threatens to devastate our local economy.
“I’m ready to stand up for Shetland at every turn and I know that by working constructively with the Scottish Government we can build a very bright future for these islands.”
Wills joins an already packed field including independent councillors Ian Scott and Ryan Thomson, Beatrice Wishart for the Liberal Democrats, Scottish Labour’s Johan Adamson, the Scottish Conservatives’ Brydon Goodlad and Ukip’s Stuart Martin.
Shetland’s by-election will take place on the 29th August.