Dave Dempsey (Scottish Conservatives)

Who is he?

Conservative candidate for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath.

He is 63, married with three adult children, and was born and brought up in Kirkcaldy. He currently lives in North Queensferry.

He's stood for the Scottish and UK parliaments on numerous occasions over the past decade.

Working life:

Attended Kirkcaldy High School, and attained a degree in maths at the University of Edinburgh. He worked as a computer software programmer before being elected to Fife Council.

Scottish Conservative election pledges:

  • "Zero tolerance for failure" at school by giving children "the best possible start" and reforming education.
  • Employ 1,000 extra nurses and midwives and make it easier to see a GP.
  • No income tax to be paid by anyone earning less than £12,500 a year, and 10,000 new apprenticeships every 12 months.
  • Reintroduce the right to buy your council house and a "step-by-step" scheme to help renters own their own home.
  • Free childcare for all two year olds from the most deprived households.
  • Letting people or charities set up new schools that are not run by the council.
  • Make anyone earning £50,000 pay a 40p rate of income tax.
  • Increase the Basic State Pension by at least 2.5% every year.

About Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath

Kirkcaldy is officially the most populated town in Fife, home to just under 50,000 people, and nicknamed "the lang toun" due to its historic high street, which at one time stretched to four miles long.

The town was the world leader in Linoleum manufacturing until the 1970's, but has since become an administrative, service, and retail centre for the wider Fife area. 

Cowdenbeath is a forming coal mining town with a population of around 11,640.

Burntisland, Dalgety Bay, Dysart, Kelty, and Lochgelly are the other towns in the constituency, which includes the villages of Aberdour, Auchtertool, Ballingry, Crosshill, Glencraig, Kinghorn, Lochore and Lumphinnans.

Some of the highest levels of deprivation in Scotland have been recorded in parts of the constituency, including the worst off areas within the two main towns.

There are six secondary schools in the area - Balwearie, Beath, Kirkcaldy, Lochgelly, St Andrews, and Viewforth - and around 20 primaries.

The area is home to Raith Rovers and Cowdenbeath football clubs, who both play in the SPFL Championship, and Elite League ice hockey club Fife Flyers.

Famous philosopher Adam Smith, who has influenced economists for generations, was born in Kirkcaldy and wrote 'The Wealth of Nations' there.

Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath is considered possibly the safest parliamentary seat in Scotland, with former Prime Minister Gordon Brown winning 65% of the vote in 2010, compared to the SNPs 14%.

Mr Brown, who was Chancellor of the Exchequer for 10 years, has been the local MP since the constituency was formed in 2005, having previously served Dunfermline East for over 20 years.

However the SNPs David Torrance took Kirkcaldy in the 2011 Scottish Parliament elections. Helen Eadie won Cowdenbeath for Labour. Following her death in 2013, former Fife Council leader Alex Rowley won the by-election for the party in early 2014.

The main constituency issues - in his opinion:

Who else is standing here:

Callum Leslie, Liberal Democrats

Jack Neill, UKIP

Kenny Selbie, Labour

Roger Mullin, SNP

Why Dave Dempsey thinks you should vote for him: