Local hero John Caskie and Colin Smyth in 2016
Local hero John Caskie and Colin Smyth in 2016

South Scotland MSP Colin Smyth has kicked off a search for a local hero, who will be able to attend the Scottish Parliament’s opening ceremony in October.

Every member of the Scottish Parliament is being asked to nominate one of their constituents who have made an extraordinary contribution to the lives of other people living in Scotland locally or nationally during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Those selected by their MSP will be invited to contribute to the Parliament’s Opening Ceremony, an event which will take place in early October to formally mark the new session of the Parliament.

At the start of the last Parliament in 2016, Dumfries Community Champion John Caskie attended the opening with Colin Smyth as local hero. John is well known for being involved in a range of community projects including Guid Nychburris, Chair of Locharbriggs Community Centre and was awarded an MBE in 2018 for services to the community of Dumfries.

Colin Smyth said: “As an MSP I am aware of the challenges which Covid has presented to many people in our communities, but I have also heard so many uplifting stories of people coming together and going above and beyond to protect those most vulnerable.

“As we begin this new session of Parliament, we are filled with renewed purpose, hope and determination to make things better for people in Scotland.

“Therefore, it is fitting that we can use this occasion to tell the story of those across Scotland who have provided that optimism for others.

“As we seek to recover and rebuild our country, I am proud that the Parliament can play it’s part in celebrating and honouring those that have made such a positive difference during challenging times.

“I would urge anyone to get in touch to nominate a local hero.”

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