A THIRD contender has come forward in a bid to represent the SNP in East Lothian at next year’s Holyrood elections.

Lyn Jardine, a former chair of Women’s Aid East and Midlothian, has joined Dunbar and East Linton Councillor Paul McLennan, and Iain Whyte, office manager for Paul Wheelhouse, South of Scotland MSP and energy minister, in seeking to be the party’s candidate for East Lothian in 2021.

The party is expected to announce its candidate in late October, with hopefuls vetted before local members are asked to choose their preferred person.

Mrs Jardine said: “In order to deliver both independence and the support we deserve, East Lothian needs an MSP who exhibits the competence and determination to bring about the changes necessary.

“I’ve shown that competence – serving our communities in both professional and voluntary capacity – and I’m determined to keep doing so as your MSP.

“I’ve worked all my life in housing, health and social care, across public and third sectors, as well as self-employed.

“I served several years as chair of Women’s Aid East and Midlothian and on both the child and adult protection committees across both local authorities.”

A new MSP for East Lothian will be selected when the elections take place in May.

Iain Gray (Labour) has held the seat since 2007 but is not seeking re-election.

Labour are yet to announce their candidate, with Councillor Craig Hoy, who represents the Haddington and Lammermuir ward on East Lothian Council, already named as the Conservatives’ candidate.

No other candidate has yet been announced.

Mrs Jardine, who lives in Whittingehame, felt the SNP was “in a good place” across the county.

The elected organiser for East Lothian SNP, who would be the party’s first woman candidate for East Lothian for the Scottish Parliament, said: “I worked with the campaign team supporting the successful European and Westminster election campaigns, and I have no doubt that whoever is selected, our members will put the same passion into campaigning for a better deal for East Lothian and a fairer, more equal Scotland.”