IT was the election result which sent shockwaves across East Renfrewshire.

But, two years on from losing her seat to Conservative rival Paul Masterton, Kirsten Oswald is ready to fight the SNP’s corner again.

In 2017, Mr Masterton claimed East Renfrewshire for the Tories for the first time since 1997, while Ms Oswald’s vote fell by 10 per cent.

The result defied many pre-election predictions and, at the time, was seen as a major blow to the SNP.

READ MORE: Conservative candidate Paul Masterton wins East Renfrewshire seat in General Election

Now, however, Ms Oswald is able to reflect on where the battle for East Renfrewshire was won and lost.

She insists there isn’t a lot she would change about her approach and is as convinced as ever that she is the best person to stand up for East Renfrewshire in Westminster.

“You always have to reflect and I am always reflecting as a person,” she told the Barrhead News.

“I think I worked really hard during my two years as MP and I did the very best job that I could, both at Westminster and locally.

“Part of my reflection on things is that I approached it in the right way. I’m not sure I could have campaigned differently in any particular way.

“We campaigned as hard as possible, we knocked on as many doors as we could and appeared on as many street corners as we could.

“So, we did all of these things and it was a snap election and it wasn’t in the cycle we might have anticipated and perhaps that had an impact.

“It always has to go back to why do you want to do this? I really enjoyed having that opportunity to help and support people and that side of it, I think, I did a good job of.

“For me, it’s about would you largely do things the same? I probably would, largely.”

Ms Oswald is being tipped in the latest analysis to pip Mr Masterton in the ballot when voters go to the polls on December 12.

But the fight for East Renfrewshire is predicted to be one of the tightest races in the country – and Ms Oswald knows it still could go either way.

The Clarkston resident believes her presence in the community continues to put her ahead of other candidates who choose to live elsewhere.


She said: “You have to be as present as you can in the whole community and put yourself out there so that people see you.

“Whether it’s just the informal stuff of you being out in the shops or in the local high street, you have to be there so you can understand the issues local people have and are able to represent them.

“The main reflection I would have is that I think it really helps to be present, so people can interact with their local MP.

“How do we make sure there is a presence everywhere as often as possible, as well as taking the voice of people here down the road to Westminster?

READ MORE: Kirsten Oswald hopes her ‘passion’ will prevail

“People need to have their voice heard in Westminster, so they need someone who will listen and stand up for them.”

Ms Oswald said that, since losing her seat, she has continued to work closely with local groups and became the SNP’s first-ever woman party chair in November last year.

She said: “I’ve been doing bits of voluntary work and have kept busy. I like being busy, which is good for this line of work.”