A veteran north-east politician recovering from a life-or-death battle with a serious illness has resumed election campaigning from his hospital bed.
Brian Topping, councillor for the Fraserburgh and District ward, was admitted to hospital on April 14, after suffering from a severe chest infection for a number of weeks.
Testing confirmed it was not Covid, but further examination and an MRI scan showed that Mr Topping was more sick than he realised.
An irregular rhythm was detected in his heartbeat, and after a life-saving medical intervention, he has now been recovering from his ordeal at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary.
Mr Topping, an Alba Party candidate for the North East of Scotland list in the upcoming election, last month left the SNP after serving as a councillor for the party for 37 years.
Campaigning from bed
He has now resumed campaigning by tweeting from his hospital bed, and said he hopes to get back to joining the physical political campaign this weekend.
Mr Topping has now thanked all of the staff and medical professionals at ARI for their help and support, and believes the NHS may very well have saved his life.
He said: “You are probably wondering why you haven’t seen me on the campaign trail.
“Well, the truth is I was whisked away into ARI a couple of weeks ago.
“The good news is they are well on the way to getting my heart sorted out.
“Firstly, great thanks to all the staff in ARI for looking after me so well.
“What a job they are doing in these tough times and I can tell you, as an ex-chef, even the food is first class.
“Secondly, thanks to friends and family and all my campaigners, I hope to be back in the Broch working with you this weekend.”
He added: “Remember, there is no stopping Topping”.
Alba in Aberdeenshire Council
Mr Topping defected from the SNP to the Alba Party in March, and will stand with the party’s leader and Scotland’s former first minister Alex Salmond in the North East of Scotland list.
Mr Salmond’s new party has urged people to vote for the SNP in constituencies, and for Alba on the regional lists for this year’s Holyrood election, with the aim of creating a “supermajority” for independence.
The news of Mr Topping quitting the SNP and joining Alba came soon after two other former SNP councillors, Alastair Bews of the North Kincardine ward, and Leigh Wilson of the Mearns ward, joined Mr Salmond’s fledgling party.
The three councillors are currently the only Alba councillors on Aberdeenshire Council.