Sir Alex Fergusson, South Ayrshire hill farmer and former Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament has died at the age of 59 after a short illness.
He was a Member of the Scottish Parliament from its inception in 1999 until 2016 representing the Scottish Conservative Party.
He was Presiding Officer from 2007 to 2011. During his time at Holyrood he took a particular interest in rural politics and right until the time of his death campaigned for the creation of Scotland’s third National Park in Galloway.
Sir Alex, who was knighted in 2016, was educated at Eton College and studied agriculture at SAC’s Auchincruive campus.
After a short spell as a farm management consultant he took over the management of the family at Barr where he ran the Whiteknowes flock of Blackfaces.
He is a former president of the Blackface Sheep Breeders Association.
Fellow South Ayrshire farmer and MSP John Scott said: “Alex was a true countryman who brought both integrity and compassion to politics. He was well known for his charm and sense of humour and was utterly approachable at all times.”