STV today announces its wide-ranging election coverage as the campaign unfolds, including Leader interviews and debate, expert insights from our political team and daily reporting on the key issues facing the electorate.
Dedicated programming includes The STV Leaders’ Debate; STV News Election Special results programmes; dedicated one-to-one leader interviews on Scotland Tonight; and coverage from the campaign trail right across the country on STV News at Six.  STV’s full and comprehensive coverage is both on-air and online right now and will continue as the new parliament begins to take shape.
The STV Leaders’ Debate: 7.30-9pm on Tuesday 13 April - This dedicated show will be hosted by STV’s political editor, Colin Mackay, and will feature the five leaders of the main political parties including Patrick Harvie (co-leader of the Scottish Green Party), Willie Rennie (Scottish Liberal Democrats), Douglas Ross (Scottish Conservatives), Anas Sarwar (Scottish Labour) and Nicola Sturgeon (Scottish National Party). The debate will begin with opening statements from each party leader, followed by initial discussion, cross examination between the leaders and closing statements. The programme will be streamed live and available for catch up on STV Player. Analysis and discussion will continue on Scotland Tonight later that evening at 10.40pm.
Scotland Tonight SpecialsColin Mackay will carry out one-to-one leaders’ interviews, which will also be available for catch up on STV Player.  Upcoming interviews will be confirmed shortly.
STV News Election Special will air between 4-7pm and 8pm-8.30pm on Friday 7 May, bringing viewers the first results as they come in.  The programme will be presented by John MacKay outside Holyrood, with STV special correspondent Bernard Ponsonby and Rona Dougall analysing the numbers at STV’s results studio in Glasgow – bringing viewers the story as it unfolds and key declarations as they happen live on air.  STV reporters will be at voting counts across the country, feeding in live to the programme.
An additional STV News Election Special will air on Saturday 8 May from 4.30pm-6:30pm, covering the results being declared as the new parliament begins to take shape. 
STV News at Six - Coverage continues on STV’s nightly news programme, with Kathryn Samson travelling to communities across the country in her Covid-secure ‘bubble’, inviting viewers to share views on all the political developments of the day.
The STV News website will offer comprehensive, up-to-the-minute coverage including Leader interviews, expert insights from STV’s political team, rolling results coverage as the counts declare and detailed analysis once the outcome is known.  Reporting will be available on the STV News website, apps and social media platforms.
Linda Grimes Douglas, Head of News and Current Affairs at STV, said: “It’s a hugely exciting time for Scottish politics and our team is primed and ready to bring viewers the most comprehensive coverage of Election 2021.  From our Leaders’ Debate and one-to-ones on Scotland Tonight, to analysis and on-the-night updates as part of special programming – alongside fully comprehensive ongoing updates from across the country on STV News at Six – we’ve got it covered.”
Media Enquiries:
Kirstin Stevenson, 07803 970106 or
Image features the following:
  • John MacKay, Bernard Ponsonby and Rona Dougall, will present the STV News Election Special programmes
  • John and Rona will also present the Scotland Tonight election specials.
  • Bernard Ponsonby, STV’s Special Correspondent will co-present the results shows.
  • Kathryn Samson, STV’s Westminster Correspondent, who is travelling with the STV Bubble on STV News at Six and will report live from the STV News Election Special.
  • Colin Mackay, STV’s Political Editor, will host the STV Leaders’ Debate 2021 on Tuesday 13 April and will conduct the face-to-face interviews on Scotland Tonight.