SNP Councillor Gavin Barrie quits SNP Group after being replaced by Kate Campbell

SNP Councillor Gavin Barrie (former housing and economy convener) has quit the SNP Group after being replaced by newly elected Kate Campbell.

Gavin Barrie was replaced by Ms Campbell at the group AGM.

Gavin Barrie maintains there had been no complaints about is work as convenor prior to the AGM.

Mr Barrie is quoted as writing:

“If hard work, diligence and success, although recognising there is always much more to do, is a recipe in some people’s eyes for dismissal and replacement I cannot maintain my self-respect and dignity if I remain as part of the SNP group and accept this.”


it is believed that Mr Barrie only had thirty minutes notice of the challenge to his position and that the SNP group leader had known about it for at least three weeks. Group leader Cllr McVey has denied this version of events.

Mr Barrie is to continue as an Independent Councillor for Inverleith.

Mr Barrie's resignation from the SNP group means the minority SNP-Labour administration now has just 29 of the 63 seats on the council. The Conservatives are now the biggest party with 18 seats to the SNP's 17.

Mr Barrie is also quoted as saying that Councillor Campbell had approached him and asked him to stand aside from his role to let her have it. In return for stepping aside Mr Barrie was offered "support to unseat Cllr Gardiner in the planning convener’s role”.

Mr Barrie said:

“I found this surprising, firstly because I had never shown any interest in the planning role and secondly because only weeks before Cllr Campbell tried to get herself elected to this role. I was further surprised that a backbencher was trying to organise who within the SNP group would get roles of extra responsibility.”


Mr Barrie continued:

“To have also been deposed in my role as group chair and see all the internal elected posts apart from yours and the deputy leader’s change incumbents, including all other members of the group executive being replaced, might look to some as if some kind of purge has been carried out. I will leave that for others to judge.”


You can read more in the Sotsman:

here and here
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