The Early Years
The Early Years The SNP's origins can be traced back to several organisations advocating home rule for Scotland in the 1920s and 30s. In 1928 The Scots National League (formed in 1921) and the Glasgow University Scottish Nationalist Association (formed in 1927) combined with the Scottish National Movement to form the National Party of Scotland.
In 1934 the National Party amalgamated with the Scottish Party to become the Scottish National Party.
A new sang
When the Scottish Parliament met for the first time on the 12th May 1999, it was given to Winnie Ewing, as the oldest member present, to open the proceedings. She did so with the words:
'The Scottish Parliament, adjourned on the 25th March 1707, is hereby re-convened.'
When the Act of Union was given royal assent in 1707, the Earl of Seafield commented: 'There's the end of an auld sang.' The election of a Scottish Parliament almost three hundred years later represented a new sang and a new start for Scotland. Expectations were high that devolution would deliver a real difference and MSPs were cheered into their temporary offices on the Mound.
The 2007 Scottish Parliament and local government elections represented the breakthrough for the SNP. After 8 years of low ambition and low achievement from the Labour/Lib Dem Executive the Scottish people were ready for fresh thinking and a new approach. The SNP provided both.
The SNP’s positive campaign was based on the key theme of making Scotland more successful, with vital health services kept local; more support for small businesses; safer communities; and lower and fairer local tax, leaving more money in peoples’ pockets at the end of every month.
When the votes were eventually counted, the SNP emerged the largest party in terms of both the popular vote and number of MSPs. The SNP had 32.9 per cent of the vote – the highest in the party’s history - compared to Labour’s 32.2 per cent and 47 MSPs compared to Labour’s 46. The SNP had won the election and went on to form a minority administration.
Together we can make Scotland better
The Scottish Parliamentary election of 2011 marked a turning point in the history of Scottish politics and the Scottish Parliament. Following a hugely positive campaign, the SNP won an overall majority in the Scottish Parliament with 69 seats - a feat made more significant by the fact the electoral system was specially designed to prevent any party gaining overall control of the parliament.
Following the historic win, Leader Alex Salmond announced that the SNP Government would hold a referendum on Independence within 5 years.