Burnett of Leys hopes to take Westminster seat


One of Deeside’s best known businessmen has won the Conservative nomination to contest the West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine seat.

Alexander Burnett of Leys, chairman of the North Banchory Company, was up against Aberdeen councillor Ross Thomson, Alex Johnstone MSP and Colin Clarke at the ‘open primary’ in Aboyne last Sunday, where Mr Burnett received the majority of the vote from the crowd of 200-plus.

The US-style event was unusual in the sense that the Tories asked local residents to select their preferred candidate whether they voted Conservative at election time, or not.

Now Mr Burnett has emerged as the winner of this event - only the second of its kind in Scotland - he will be the main challenger for incumbent Sir Robert Smith.

Sir Robert has held the seat since its creation in 1997.

Alexander Burnett said of his win: “I am absolutely delighted to have won the selection to be Conservative candidate.

“I have been overwhelmed by the support over the last week, and would like to give my thanks and deep appreciation for that.”