Craig Hoy, south Scotland MSP, has been announced as the new chairman of the Scottish Conservative and Unionist Party.

The county-based former Haddington and Lammermuir councillor replaces Rab Forman who had held the role since 2015.

Mr Hoy said: “I’m thrilled to accept this position. There’s a big challenge facing our party but, under Douglas Ross’ leadership and with the team of MSPs we have, I’m convinced we can move forward to even greater heights than he delivered last year.

“All of our focus now needs to be on how we build up the party’s operations so that we can remove the SNP from power in the future.”

Douglas Ross, Scottish Conservative leader, said: “I want to offer my sincere thanks to Rab Forman, who has been a fantastic, devoted servant to the party for many years.

“At my request, Rab willingly agreed to stay on after last year’s election to provide stability in the first year of a new Scottish Parliament term while we also appointed a new party director.

“After a successful period as honorary secretary, Rab became chairman in 2015. During that time, he has presided over the renaissance of the Scottish Conservative Party and been the steady hand on the tiller under three leaders.

“As we turn to the challenges ahead, I am delighted to appoint Craig Hoy MSP to the role of party chairman and Meghan Gallacher MSP to the deputy leader post.

“In a short space of time, Craig has proven to be incredibly hard working. He will bring an unmatched drive and energy to the role.”