Alliance Castlereagh councillor co-opted to replace Sorcha Eastwood in Assembly

Michelle Guy - Alliance. Michelle Guy X accountMichelle Guy - Alliance. Michelle Guy X account
Michelle Guy - Alliance. Michelle Guy X account
An Alliance Party councillor has been co-opted to serve as an MLA in Lagan Valley after the election of Sorcha Eastwood as an MP.

Castlereagh councillor Michelle Guy will take the Assembly seat after Ms Eastwood triumphed at last week’s General Election to win the Westminster seat previously held by the DUP’s former leader Sir Jeffrey Donaldson.

On Wednesday the Electoral Office said Ms Guy had been returned to serve as an MLA for Lagan Valley.

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The 45-year-old has been a Lisburn and Castlereagh city councillor since 2019, including serving as deputy mayor in 2022.

She said she is “absolutely delighted to have been selected by her party for the role.

"It is truly an immense honour to represent the constituency where I live in this role,” Ms Guy said.

“I look forward to getting straight down to work. Sorcha Eastwood leaves huge shoes to fill with her history-making election but I will continue to work closely with her as the new MP, as well as my constituency colleague David Honeyford MLA.

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“I look forward to building on their work and mine as councillor to serve the people of Lagan Valley on the issues that matter to them.

“As a team, we will continue to advocate for positive change in Northern Ireland and its institutions.

"The people of Northern Ireland deserve to have a functioning government, and Alliance believes that reforming our institutions is the right way forward. No single party should have the power to bring down our Assembly and Executive.

“Lagan Valley is an increasingly diverse constituency as symbolic of the new Northern Ireland”.

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Alliance leader Naomi Long MLA said she was delighted Michelle was joining the team.

“Michelle has been a dedicated and passionate Alliance elected representative for many years now and I am delighted she is strengthening Alliance’s Assembly team by joining it.

“Alongside David and Sorcha, as well as our local Councillors, Michelle will be a key part of our growing Lagan Valley team, who aim to deliver the Alliance vision of a fairer and better community for everyone across the entire community.”

A number of co-options are set to be announced in other constituencies as three other MLA were also elected to Parliament, including independent Alex Easton in North Down, the UUP’s Robin Swann in North Antrim after his election as MP in South Antrim, and TUV leader Jim Allister in North Antrim.

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