LABOUR has lost its majority control of Midlothian Council after one of its stalwarts quit the party.
Councillor Jackie Aitchison has become an independent and will contest May’s election in the Bonnyrigg ward on that basis. The 18-member council is split between nine Labour councillors and another group of nine made up of Mr Aitchison, the SNP and the Liberal Democrats.
However, Provost Adam Montgomery, a Labour councillor, will have the final casting vote in the event of any split decisions before the election.
Mr Aitchison’s move comes after he was deselected in favour of new candidate Louie Milliken. Council leader Derek Milligan, of Labour, said: “This has been a decision for Jackie to take. The branch members felt that they wanted a new and younger candidate.”