Tories choose city councillor Susan Webber to fight Edinburgh Western at 2021 Holyrood elections

Tory councillor Sue Webber has been chosen as the party's candidate for Edinburgh Western in next year's Scottish Parliament elections.

By Ian Swanson
Wednesday, 18th November 2020, 4:45 pm
Susan Webber has been a councillor since 2017
Susan Webber has been a councillor since 2017

She beat fellow councillors Graham Hutchison and Scott Douglas to win the nomination.

A Tory source said Scottish Conservative Central Office would be pleased that at least one female candidate had now been selected in Lothian.

Councillor Webber said she was “delighted” at being chosen. "Fighting the campaign will be very different because of Covid,” she said. “We will still rely on feet on the ground for leafleting but we’ll have to use more inventive and creative ways to connect with the community and let them know that you’re out there, and telephone canvassing and so on.”

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The selection by local party members took place by zoom on Tuesday evening immediately after the three short-listed candidates had given short presentations and answered questions.

Cllr Webber, who is the Tories’ transport spokeswoman on the council, said the current debate over traffic measures in the Capital would be an important element of her campaign. "Right now the issue that’s really high up the agenda for Edinburgh Western is Spaces for People, especially the East Craig low traffic neighbourhood, which doesn’t look as if it’s going to disappear anytime soon. They also have measures they want to start implementing on Queensferry Road.

"We will also be driving home important messages about how we need to improve healthcare and education. These are devolved matters we need to be focusing on. Devolution offered us a way to do things differently from the rest of the UK – we’re not doing any better on either of those things.”

Cllr Webber was born and brought up in Edinburgh, went to Currie High School and Edinburgh University. She has long been a Conservative supporter but became active during the 2014 independence referendum. She works supplying medical products and was elected to the city council representing Pentland Hills ward in 2017.

The Evening News revealed last week two senior Edinburgh Tories – Lothian MSP Jeremy Balfour and council group leader Iain Whyte – were excluded from the shortlist for Edinburgh Western.

Edinburgh Western Lib Dem MSP Alex Cole-Hamilton had a majority of 2,960 over the SNP at the last election in 2016 with Conservatives in third place.

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