AN SNP councillor has announced his resignation from the party after 15 years.

Innes Nelson said he would continue as an independent on Inverclyde Council after announcing he was quitting the SNP through local media outlet InverclydeNow.

The Inverclyde South West councillor told that outlet: “Further to the actions of my fellow SNP councillors at last Thursday’s Inverclyde Council meeting to remove me from the chair of audit I have tendered my resignation to the Scottish National Party HQ in Edinburgh.

“I would like to thank council leader Stephen McCabe, Councillor David Wilson and employees of Inverclyde Council who have supported me during my illness with Lyme Disease.

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“I was the longest-serving SNP councillor on Inverclyde Council having been in office for 15 years since a by-election held in 2009 after the death of councillor Kenny Ferguson.

“I will now sit as an independent councillor on Inverclyde Council.”

Scottish Labour run Inverclyde Council and are also the largest group, with nine of the 22 seats. The SNP now have seven, there are two Tories, and four independents.

According to Inverclyde Council documents, the SNP group had on Thursday looked to replace Nelson as their representative on the Audit Committee with Councillor Chris Curley.

Earlier in April, Nelson was found to have breached the Councillors’ Code of Conduct following a Standards Commission hearing.

In 2022, councillors had been considering an application for the development of 450 houses made by billionaire businessmen Sandy and James Easdale.

Nelson backed a recommendation to impose a 270-home cap on the number of homes which could be built on the site – but failed to declare an interest regarding his adjacent property.

Noting that Nelson previously had an “unblemished record”, a panel suspended him for a period of one month.

Panel chair Ashleigh Dunn said: “The panel emphasised that the requirement for councillors to declare interests is a fundamental requirement of the code as it gives the public confidence that decisions are being made in the public interest, and not the personal interest of any councillor or their friends or family.”