THE SNP’s by-election win in Govan 30 years ago helped advance Scotland’s fight for independence, according to the party’s successful candidate and former deputy Jim Sillars.

Writing in The National today, he said: “There is a direct line between what happened in Govan, the creation of the Holyrood Parliament, the 2014 gain of 46%, and the continued drive for independence. It was Scotland that won in Govan, not just the SNP.”

READ MORE: How the SNP's 1988 Govan by-election win led to devolution and the indyref

The by-election was held on November 10 1988 and saw a 38% swing from Labour to the SNP. Sillars had been a Labour MP but switched to the SNP in 1980 after forming alliances with left leaning members of the party’s 79 Group, which included Alex Salmond and Kenny MacAskill. He defeated Labour’s candidate Bob Gillespie, father of the Primal Scream frontman Bobby Gillespie.