Lord James to quit Holyrood and take up seat with peers

Key points

• Long-serving Scots parliamentarian to quit Holyrood

• Lord James Douglas-Hamilton to take up seat in the Lords

• Is to keep a 'watching brief' over UK legislation affecting Scotland

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LORD James Douglas-Hamilton, a former Scottish Office minister, yesterday announced that he will quit Holyrood at the next election.

However, Lord James, a Tory MSP for the Lothians region since devolution, said he would take up his seat in the House of Lords to keep a "watching brief" over UK legislation affecting Scotland.

Lord James is one of Scotland's longest-serving parliamentarians and sat as MP for Edinburgh West for 23 years.

The 63-year-old, the second son of the 14th Duke of Hamilton, became an MSP in the hope of a Conservative Party revival in Scotland. He was made a life peer in 1997.

He said: "The next election I believe will produce a positive outcome on the road back to power, with energetic and committed leaders both north and south of the Border.

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