Counting under way in Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election

The seat is seen as a straight fight between the SNP and Labour

Polls have closed in the crucial Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election, with a result expected in the early hours of Friday.

Labour are confident of taking the seat from the SNP, but the margin of victory if that happens will be keenly examined ahead of the looming General Election.

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The seat was vacated when former SNP MP Margaret Ferrier was ousted in a recall petition.

Labour candidate Michael Shanks and the SNP's Katy LoudonLabour candidate Michael Shanks and the SNP's Katy Loudon
Labour candidate Michael Shanks and the SNP's Katy Loudon

Ms Ferrier was kicked out of the party for breaching Covid regulations by travelling between London and Glasgow after testing positive for the virus.

Speculation about her position followed by the recall petition and subsequent ballot have led to months of campaigning in the seat.

SNP candidate Katy Loudon is up against Labour’s Michael Shanks and Tory hopeful Thomas Kerr in the by-election.

Cameron Eadie and Gloria Adebo are running for the Greens and Scottish Liberal Democrats, respectively.

The count is being conducted at the headquarters of South Lanarkshire Council in Hamilton.

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