MEMBERSHIP of the Labour party in East Renfrewshire has plummeted over the past year, latest figures show.

There were 621 members in the Eastwood constituency in January 2018 but that number had fallen to 385 by last month – a reduction of 38 per cent.

Eastwood includes parts of Neilston, Uplawmoor and Newton Mearns, as well as Giffnock, Thornliebank, Netherlee, Stamperland, Williamwood, Busby, Clarkston and Eaglesham.

Labour has also been haemorrhaging members in the Renfrewshire South constituency, which takes in Barrhead, as well as parts of Neilston, Uplawmoor and Newton Mearns.

Membership there is down by 58 over the past year, from 317 to 259.

And across Scotland as a whole, Labour has suffered a drop in membership of almost 20 per cent.

Kirsty Blackman, the SNP's deputy leader at Westminster, claimed the figures show Labour is "on the path to terminal decline and total irrelevance in Scotland."

However, Labour MP Paul Sweeney, who represents Glasgow North East, said the decline is part of the "natural cycle" of politics.

He added: "Last year, we had a leadership election. As many people who are familiar with party political dynamics will know, many people join parties in order to participate in leadership elections."