Meet Edinburgh's new MPs: Scott Arthur, Labour MP for Edinburgh South West

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

New MP Scott Arthur recorded the biggest swing from the SNP to Labour in any of the Lothian seats as he won Edinburgh South West from Joanna Cherry at last week’s general election.

But in his speech at the count he said that he had not expected to win.  The constituency, which includes Gorgie, Slateford, Wester Hailes, Colinton, Oxgangs and Fairmilehead, was represented by Labour's Alistair Darling for 10 years until he stepped down and Ms Cherry won it in 2015.

Scott Arthur leaves a big job to be filled at the City Chambers Scott Arthur leaves a big job to be filled at the City Chambers
Scott Arthur leaves a big job to be filled at the City Chambers | TSPL

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Ms Cherry, a vocal critic of gender self-ID and of Nicola Sturgeon, had increased her majority to nearly 12,000 at the last election and she seemed the hardest of the city’s three SNP MPs for Labour to dislodge. But in the end, Mr Arthur won with a majority of over 6,000.

He has been a councillor for the Colinton/Fairmilehead ward since 2017 and city council transport convener since Labour took control as a minority administration in 2022.  He now expects to stand down later in the summer, leaving a big job to be filled at the City Chambers.

He has also been a member of Labour's ruling Scottish Executive Committee for several years.  

Born in Kirkcaldy, he studied civil engineering at Abertay University in Dundee before moving to Edinburgh in 1996 to work as a researcher at Heriot-Watt University, where he has been a lecturer since 2000.  His field is urban water management, which includes drainage and flooding, and the use of sustainable engineering.

Married with two children, he is also a keen park runner and an elder at Fairmilehead Parish Church.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.