Independent councillor wins by a landslide - Kennedy says he feels humbled

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A CAMPAIGNING councillor has been re-elected by a remarkable landslide.

Charles Kennedy polled a total of 2,032 first preference votes in last week’s council elections in East Dunbartonshire.

It was one of the highest number of votes received by any candidate in Scotland, and saw the Independent Alliance councillor poll more than double his closest rivals in the Campsie and Kirkintilloch North ward.

In comparison, the other two ward councillors elected, the SNP’s David Ritchie and Labour’s John Dempsey, recorded 1,702 votes between them.

In recent months Councillor Kennedy, who campaigned tirelessly for the Save Stobhill campaign, has been fighting his own personal battle against cancer.

Prior to the count at Bishopbriggs Leisuredrome last Friday, he was cautiously optimistic.

He told the Herald: “The postal votes look to be good, but I don’t want to count any chickens.”

But after the results of his ward were announced - one of the last to come in - he gave a heartfelt speech to supporters.

Councillor Kennedy said: “Thanks to all of the people in the ward who have given me such a resounding victory.

“Thanks for your support, I won’t let you down.

“I will do my best to fight for you and put into practice the socialist views I hold dear.”

Speaking to the Herald after taking in the magnitude of his victory, he said: “It’s the largest vote of confidence I’ve had as a councillor and I am completely over the moon about the result.

“I actually find the whole experience incredibly humbling, especially since I am an independent candidate, so people are putting their faith in me as an individual.

“The result gives me a real mandate to get out there and do the best I can for the people of East Dunbartonshire.”

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