So what happened?

May 7, 2017

By Simone Charlesworth

Being a nerd, I wanted to see how STV played out.

I started by looking at my own ward Newlands – Auldburn. Unfortunately the top 3 first preferences were “eventually” elected, but I’m working through it so I can see how a straight-forward ward works.

Warning: this is a lot of screenshots and not much swearing, so probably low on entertainment value.

All data from Glasgow City Council.

I am writing this up as I go, so please bear with me, this is a case of me mewsing out loud.


A turnout of 7,514 (42.3%) which is higher than the 38.98% in 2012 but to be honest I m disappointed.  Everyone complains about their local council. Nothing changes if you don’t get off your arse & vote!

In 2012 for the same ward the percentage turnout was 38.98%, with 6,921 valid papers & 199 rejected.

251 spoiled papers (3.3%) as comparable to 199 (2.9%) in 2012.


It looks like some still aren’t clear on ranking candidates. The polling clerks were clear at my polling place that you had to number in order of preference. Maybe there needs to be more information independent of parties being sent out to the public on how the system works?


Stage 1: Josephine Dochety (SNP) sailed through, beating the quota of 1816. Her surplus votes are then spread across the remaining candidates.


The majority of these go to the second SNP candidate, but some do go to the other parties, and 3 are non-transferable out of the 63 (about 4.8%) – so I guess some only voted for her.

Next Stage 3 – removal of the lowest polling candidate Rebecca Cole-Bennett (Lib-Dem)


This lead to increases for the Charles Gay (Green), Curran (Labour) & Thornton (Tory) with smaller gains for the second candidates for both Labour and the SNP. But still no-one making the quota.

I’m guessing the non-transferable votes from here on include votes for candidates already eliminated as well as those who didn’t rank further. 38 out of 260 (14.6%)

This is a pity because I would love to have known how many did or didn’t rank.

Stage 4 was the loss of Fay Graham, the second Labour party candidate.


Obviously, her second preferences mainly went to Stephen Curran which pushed him over the quota, with Greens, Tories and then SNP second candidate. She had 58 non-transferable votes, from her 390 (14.9%)

Stage 5: Stephen Curran’s surplus.


It is easy to assume the majority of non-transferable votes 115 out of 227 (50.7%) would have been intended for Fay Graham, the second Labour candidate. The next highest transfer was to the green then the Tories & lastly the SNP.

It definitely appears that the Tories are more favoured as second choice than the SNP in Scottish Labour. It is a relief how many do chose Greens.

Next stage is the exclusion of the Green candidate, Charles Gay


I’m relieved to see the majority 270 out of 569 went to the SNP especially as the Greens do target SNP to “lend their vote”. However 232 votes went elsewhere and 66 went to the Tory.

And the last stage, when we’re down to 2 candidates the lowest one is excluded and the next one gets in by default.


The interesting thing is that the Tories were probably better served by only fielding one candidate and focusing their votes. When you look at votes on a party basis for first preferences it works out as.

Conservative 1,496 (19.9%)
“Glasgow” Labour 2,075 (28.6%)
Lib Dems 259 (3.4%)
Scottish Greens 422 (5.6%)
SNP 2,911 (40%)

I’m not complacent over the Tory “revival” but at the same time I know damn well it’s not as forceful as the media are trying to make out.

Image: Pixabay

You can follow Simone Charlesworth on twitter @cee4cat and at Mewsing Out Loud

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