SNP Westminster leader Stephen Flynn will be campaigning today in the Rutherglen and Hamilton West ahead of a by-election in the constituency expected in the autumn.

Mr Flynn will be in Cambuslang alongside the SNP's candidate Katy Loudon.

A date has not yet been set for the by-election, but is likely to take place in October, and is being fought by Labour and the SNP.

The poll was triggered by a successful recall petition last week for Margaret Ferrier, who was suspended from the House of Commons for breaching coronavirus rules in 2020.

Ms Ferrier, who has sat as an independent since having the SNP whip removed, has confirmed she will not be running again in the seat near Glasgow.

READ MORE: Tories urge people in Rutherglen not to vote tactically in by-election

Ahead of the visit, Mr Flynn hit out at Labour's stance on Brexit, which the SNP continue to oppose. The SNP have made Labour's acceptance of EU withdrawal a key part of its byelection campaign strategy as it seeks to hold the seat, tipped to switch to Labour.

The SNP wants a second independence referendum and would plan to join the EU if Scotland becomes independent.

Labour opposed Brexit ahead of the referendum in 2016 but has now accepted the UK's departure from the EU and from the European single market.

"Brexit is fuelling the UK cost-of-living crisis and making families in Rutherglen and Hamilton West poorer - and the SNP is the only party offering an escape from Brexit with independence," said Mr Flynn.

"Sir Keir Starmer's pro-Brexit Labour Party has sold Scotland out by backing a hard Tory Brexit - and ruling out any return to the EU and single market.

"That shameful decision has cost Scotland billions of pounds, cut EU financial support for South Lanarkshire, and increased household mortgage bills, rents and food prices to unacceptable levels."

READ MORE: Labour's Michael Shanks says independence supporters are rejecting SNP

Ms Loudon said: "Brexit has been a disaster for Rutherglen and Hamilton West.
"The SNP is the only party offering real help with the cost of living - and a route back to the EU with independence.

"(Labour candidate) Michael Shanks must explain why the Labour Party supports a hard Tory Brexit, which is making families in Rutherglen and Hamilton West poorer - and costing Scotland billions of pounds.

"Brexit has taken vital EU funding away from our community and cost local families dearly, as it fuels inflation and sends people's mortgages, rents, food prices and living costs soaring."

Labour is the favourites to win the marginal seat from the SNP who had a 5,000 majority in December 2019.

READ MORE: What do Rutherglen voters think as by-election campaign gets underway?

It is being seen as a straight fight between Mr Shanks, a teacher who lives locally and who runs a scout group for disabled children, and Ms Loudon, who is a South Lanarkshire councillor.

Asked about Labour's current support for Brexit last week, Mr Shanks said he had voted remain and believed a Labour Government would deliver Brexit in a better way than the Conservatives.

He was pressed by The Herald if he would support the UK joining the single European market, which would remove trade barriers between the EU and UK and allow free movement of people.

He said: "I think as Brexit goes on, it is clear the current government has absolutely no plans for making it work.

"A Labour government will have plans for better working with the European Union and the European Union working with us. What that is to look like in the future is for the people to decide and whatever the situation is at the time.

"At the moment I think we need to make the current situation work. But absolutely I voted remain, I campaigned for remain. I actually believe in the European Union and I believe that closer ties are the only ways this will work."

Asked if he personally would like to see the UK back in the single market, he said: "No, because I think we need to make the current arrangements work."