STIRLING SNP held a special event at the Smith Museum last week to mark 20 years to the day of the Scottish Parliament being reconvened in 1999.

It is also 20 years since Bruce Crawford was elected to the Parliament, representing the local area first as a regional MSP for Mid Scotland and Fife, and then as the Stirling Constituency MSP since 2007.

Bruce’s career in politics began in 1988, when he was elected to Perth and Kinross Council – later serving as the Leader of the Council. After entering the Parliament in 1999, he served as Environment Spokesperson and Chief Whip.

After coming into Government in 2007, Bruce was appointed Parliamentary Business Minister, and then Cabinet Secretary for Government Business. He was involved in leading the negotiations between the Scottish and UK Government’s for the 2014 Independence Referendum. He now Chairs the Finance and Constitution Committee, and is the Convener of the SNP MSP Group in Holyrood.

Speakers at the Sunday event included Keith Brown MSP, depute leader of the SNP, Christine Grahame MSP, Deputy presiding officer of the Scottish Parliament and John Swinney MSP, deputy First Minister.

A video tribute to Bruce was shown, with messages from MSP colleagues, including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

Bruce said: “I am grateful to have spent the afternoon with close friends and colleagues, celebrating what is an important milestone for Scotland: 20 years since Scotland’s Parliament was reconvened.

“It is having the power to make decisions for ourselves that has given us the ability to make life better for people in Scotland. We have the best-performing NHS in the UK, the fairest and most progressive system of income tax, a more compassionate social security system, and the lowest crime rates in four decades.

“The Scottish Parliament has done a very important thing: given the people of Scotland the belief and confidence in themselves. Things don’t have to be done the Westminster way, we can make better decisions for Scotland, in Scotland.

“It has been an immense privilege and honour to have been able to serve this area in the Scottish Parliament for the past twenty years. This isn’t an honour I take lightly, with it comes with incredible responsibility. I will continue to act on behalf of, and speak up for my constituents to the very best of my ability.”