Skip to main content

Law Society Council candidates announced

27 April 2015 | tagged News release

Eight of the 10 seats due to be filled on the Law Society of Scotland’s Council this year will see a contested election after 17 solicitors put themselves forward for the 2015 elections.

This year’s elections sees the final reduction in the number of seats since Law Society members voted to reduce the size of Council from 62 seats to 46 at the annual general meeting in May 2012.

Two new faces, Philip Lafferty from Clyde Defence Lawyers Ltd, Clydebank, and Campbell Read from Stewart Balfour & Sutherland, Campbeltown, returned unopposed in the constituency of Campbeltown, Dumbarton, Dunoon, Fort William, Oban & Rothesay. There will now be an election to decide who will fill the eight remaining seats.

Lorna Jack, chief executive of the Law Society, said: "The legal profession continues to go through a huge amount of change. Though the economic outlook seems to be improving, Scotland’s solicitors still face new and innovative business models emerging, major reforms to our justice system and ongoing constitutional change. That is why it is so positive to see such interest from members wanting to help their professional body lead and support a successful respected Scottish legal profession.”

As part of this year’s round of elections, eight Council members have chosen to retire - Morris Anderson, Kirstie MacNeil, David Newton, David Preston, Hamish Watt, Ken Swinton, Alberto Costa and Neil Ross.

Alistair Morris, President of the Law Society of Scotland, said: “All of the council members standing down this year have worked hard over many years to ensure they made the best decisions for Scotland’s solicitors. Their commitment and dedication to their profession will be missed.

“I’d like to thank this year’s nominees for putting their names forward. I speak from my own experience when I say that being a council member can be fulfilling, fascinating, challenging and insightful. It is a great opportunity to help lead and support Scotland’s solicitors and I wish them the best of luck in the upcoming elections.”

Voting for the 2015 Council elections will open at 12 noon, 7 May and successful candidates will be appointed as Council members on 21 May, before this year’s annual general meeting on Thursday, 28 May.

The complete list of candidates for this year's Council elections is:

Dingwall, Dornoch, Elgin, Inverness, Kirkwall, Lerwick, Lochmaddy, Portree, Stornoway, Tain & Wick (two Council seats):

  • Diane Macfarlane, Public Defence Solicitors Office, Kirkwall
  • George MacWilliam – current Council member
  • Sheekha Saha – current Council member


Duns, Haddington, Jedburgh, Peebles and Selkirk (two Council seats):

  • Iain Burke, Bannerman Burke, Selkirk
  • Struan Ferguson, Blackwood & Smith, Peebles
  • Alan Livingstone, Hastings & Co, Kelso
  • Patricia Thom, Patricia Thom & Co, Galashiels


Campbeltown, Dumbarton, Dunoon, Fort William, Oban & Rothesay (two Council seats):

  • Philip Lafferty, Clyde Defence Lawyers Ltd, Clydebank
  • Campbell Read, Stewart Balfour & Sutherland, Campbeltown


Arbroath, Dundee & Forfar (one Council seat):

  • Murray Etherington, Thorntons Law, Dundee
  • Janet Hood – current Council member


Alloa, Falkirk, Linlithgow & Stirling (two Council seats):

  • Kirsty Cargill, KW Law, Livingstone
  • Ken Dalling – current Council member
  • Roy Lumsden – current Council member
  • John Mulholland – current Council member


England & Wales (one Council seat):

  • Cecilia Parker Aranha, Competition and Markets Authority, London
  • Naomi Pryde, Matthew Arnold & Baldwin, London


ENDS                                                                                      27 APRIL 2015

Notes to editor:

The Council is the Law Society's decision-making body. It has 39 members elected from geographical constituencies, up to nine co-opted members representing other interest groups and nine non-solicitor members.

The 2015 year appointment, which starts on 21 May 2015, involves regularly attending Council meetings in Edinburgh and representing the views of solicitors in a constituency.

More information can be found at

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: Journalists can contact Sarah Sutton on 0131 476 8170

More information can be found at

Back to articles