Scottish Local Elections 2017

I wanted to compare the manifestos for the local elections so I did a quick search but it came up with nothing. I was hoping for a simple page somewhere that simply listed where to find all of the parties' manifestos. To save you the bother, here is where to find the manifestos of the five parties listed on my postal ballot form (in the order that they are listed), all of the homepages were found with a simple google search:

Green Party

Their homepage has a large button stating clearly where the manifesto is, which goes to a web version, which is nice for reading on say a smartphone, as well as a PDF download. Good job in making it easy.


There homepage has one mention of the word manifesto but it relates to 2016. There is a big panel labelled 'Council Elections' but the three buttons are labelled 'Volunteer', 'Register to vote', and 'vote by post'. They have some kind of policy base which seems to generally list their priorities, and under that there is a local government section so apparently you have to register to add this as an interest (which I have no real idea what that does).

At this point, I gave up. I guess the SNP have not yet launched their manifesto, but this seems to be leaving it a bit late as postal voters have their ballot papers. They could at least have something bold on their home page stating that a manifesto is coming, so people do not waste time looking for it.

Liberal Democrats

Search within their homepage for the word 'manifesto' and you will be disappointed. Though the first link on the page is to something called 'Make councils work for you'. This then has a button labelled 'Read our priorities for local government'. This then links to a kind of web readable which also has a link to a PDF download, but at no point does it actually state this is the manifesto.

Labour Party

Their homepage has very prominently some negative campaigning directed against the SNP. There is a 'campaigns' section but that does not have anything relevant to the 2017 local elections. One of the news stories is about their campaign manager urging voters that local services are at stake, and states that there is a choice between Labour and the SNP (apparently no other parties exist for the Labour campaign manager). This story even states 'Postal ballots started landing on doorsteps across Scotland this morning'. But still does not actually tell us where their manifesto might be found.

Search for manifesto and you will find a bunch of references to past SNP manifestos which Labour claim contain broken promises. However, Labour need to make some promises themselves, and for that, we need their manifesto, where is it? If Labour want to understand why they are doing poorly in Scotland they might realise that 'Please vote for us and not the SNP' is not really a manifesto.


Their homepage has most prominently a call to sign a petition to avoid a second independence referendum, which I guess is fair enough since 'Unionist' is in their party name. Down in the footer they have a link to manifestos but that currently does not contain the 2017 local election manifesto.

Weirdly a google search took me to this page regarding the edinburgh conservatives, who at first glance are not clearly associated at all with the main Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party, who do not seem to link to them. Anyway if this is indeed their manifesto, for Edinburgh at least, then it is available here which is unfortunately not a web-readable version but simply hosts a link to the pdf version.

Groan, it's 16 pages long.


Surprisingly difficult or impossible to find some of the parties' manifestos. I may be being an idiot, but wouldn't you wish to make finding your party's manifesto for an upcoming election as idiot proof as possible?

Green party clear winners in making it easy to find their manifesto for the local elections, providing both a web-readable and PDF version as well.


Comments powered by Disqus