Two politicians split from wives over alleged affairs with same journalist
Published 17/05/2016 | 07:53
Two married Scottish MPs have left their wives after having affairs with a Westminster journalist, according to reports.
Stewart Hosie, 53, and Angus MacNeil, 45, have allegedly each separated from their wife following a relationship with 36-year-old Serena Cowdy, who describes herself as a political journalist with Parliament's The House magazine.
The Scottish National Party MPs are said to have clashed over their rivalry for Miss Cowdy's affections.
Mr Hosie, deputy leader of the Scottish National Party, announced on Sunday that he was separating from wife Shona Robison, a senior politician in the Scottish Parliament.
He did not mention his relationship with Oxford-educated Miss Cowdy but it is understood that Miss Robison learnt of her husband's affair ten days ago, when he confessed, the Daily Mail claims.
Mr MacNeil announced his separation from his long-suffering wife Jane last year, not long after the end of his affair with Miss Cowdy, a former actress who is now a freelance political journalist.
Mrs MacNeil had stayed with her husband after a previous embarrassment, when he was caught with two teenage girls in a hotel room in 2007 while she, then pregnant, was in hospital.
Miss Cowdy is said to have told friends that she saw SNP MPs as romantic revolutionaries, describing them as 'the Mujahideen of British politicians'.
A source told the newspaper: "It's laughable that Serena boasts of her affairs with these MPs and says they're like a sexy Mujahideen. I doubt their wives think they are."
When asked about her affairs with the politicians last night, Miss Cowdy told the Mail: “No comment.” The MPs and their now-estranged wives also declined to speak, it claimed.
An SNP source confirmed the story to the newspaper but disputed a claim that love rivalry led to a row between Mr MacNeil and Mr Hosie.
An acquaintance of Miss Cowdy's circle, who revealed the love triangle, told the Mail: “She was having an affair with Angus MacNeil during the Scottish independence referendum campaign – and boasted that when he was on TV talking about it, she's texted him and he'd looked at his phone. He used to take her to the Park Plaza hotel in Waterloo for the night. Now she's with Stewart Hosie and has been for some time and it's very serious.
“She's suggested for a while he's going to split from his wife and they're going to have a proper relationship in public. Now he really has separated we'll have to see. I heard things had been difficult between Stewart and Angus because they'd both had the same girlfriend – and that there have been cross words between them.”
Miss Cowdy, from London, described herself as a 'mostly out of work actress' after gaining a 2:1 in modern history from St Hilda's College, Oxford.
She appeared on TV nature programmes for some years.
The Mail said it first approached Miss Cowdy and the MPs about the affairs last week – but they said nothing until a bland announcement about Mr Hosie's separation from Miss Robison was issued to a Dundee-based paper on Sunday.
An SNP spokesman said of Mr Hosie and Miss Robison: “Stewart and Shona have separated. They have a young daughter, and she will continue to be their priority.
“Both parties have asked that their privacy is respected during this difficult time. No further comment will be given.”