JOHN NICOLSON bid an emotional farewell as he lost the Alloa and Grangemouth seat to Labour.

The SNP candidate was running for re-election, having been the Westminster MP for the last five years under the Ochil and South Perthshire constituency.

However, it wasn’t to be for Mr Nicolson, as he lost the seat to Labour’s Brian Leishman by 6,122 votes.

Mr Nicolson delivered a heartfelt speech at the Alloa Town Hall shortly after the results were announced, hailing the work of his campaign team and calling on everyone to take a moment to think of the outgoing workers.

He said: “I’d like to thank the returning officer and team and to the police and to all of you who stayed so late tonight to count.

“Congratulations to you Brian, I wish you a very successful term at Westminster.

“I’ve got too many of my team to thank but I’d like to thank Jane my campaign manager and then my agent Linda and my office manager Ally and all of the team.

“In addition, my darling partner Julian who is always by my side.

“MPs who lose are in the public eye but it’s worth remembering that when we go, a whole hard working team of people lose their jobs too.

“It’s worth remembering that because they’ve devoted the last five years handling thousands of cases, most of which are out of the public eye.

“We often get the glory but they’re the ones who do all the immensely hard work so I’m sorry I could not win for you tonight.”

“It’s no fun losing, politics is about swings and roundabouts and no more is this true than in Scotland where the constitution is often so central in elections.

“It’s also clear that folk were desperate to get rid of the Conservative government and they’ve used the Labour Party as a vehicle at this election.

“However, never fear, I am quite convinced that the SNP will be back – there’s a Holyrood election in two years and this will be an exciting two years of preparation.”