Swinney cuts the ribbon on SNP’s Clarkston HQ

Deputy first minister branded East Renfrewshire a “key constituency” on Tuesday as SNP supporters turned out to welcome him to Clarkston.

The finance secretary braved the rain to cut the ribbon on SNP candidate Kirsten Oswald’s Clarkston Toll HQ.

Mr Swinney greeted the crowd by endorsing Kirsten’s campaign for the May 7 election, commenting: “It’s a real pleasure to be here with Kirsten in a key constituency for the country.

“Can I say how fantastic it is to see so many people here — both long standing members of the party and those who have joined and supported us relatively recently.

“There are strong hopes for the SNP the length and breadth of this country and there is no area that is off limits to the party.

“Here in East Renfrewshire, where people would not have considered it possible that the SNP could be challengers — you bet we’re challengers.”

Westminster hopeful Kirsten reports “good canvass returns” from East Renfrewshire so far, and believes that the party can take the seat from Labour man Jim Murphy.

The Clarkston resident told The Extra: “It’s a really interesting time. Things have changed, politically.

“In the past, this wouldn’t have been a seat where we would have expected an SNP victory a possibility in any way — but now things are possible that weren’t before.

“We’re getting good responses, and lots of people have been coming into HQ to offer their support. If we continue to work hard over the next couple of weeks, then we can do this.

“We will spend the coming weeks speaking to as many people as possible.

“Every conversation is a potential vote and it’s great to hear which issues are important to the voters of East Ren.”