South Scotland

Lord Steel's son 'devastated' by Stow party death

Edinburgh Royal Infirmary
Image caption Claire MacCabe died in hospital after becoming unwell at a party

The son of former Liberal leader Lord Steel has said he is "devastated" by the death of a woman who became unwell at a party in his home.

Claire MacCabe, 44, died in hospital after falling ill at a property in Stow in the Borders on Saturday.

Police said the death was being treated as unexplained but not suspicious.

The Daily Record reported Ms MacCabe fell ill during a birthday party for friend Graeme Steel, son of the former politician David Steel.

In a statement, Graeme Steel said: "The tragic death of Claire MacCabe has left me, my family and friends devastated.

"Matt has lost his wife and their child has lost their mother; words cannot express how we all feel by this loss.

"However, the MacCabe family (and their friends) deserve to be left alone in peace to deal with this awful situation and we would appreciate if all sections of the media would respect their wishes."

Police confirmed they were investigating after a woman became unwell at an address in Stow on Saturday night before dying at the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh.

"The death is currently being treated as unexplained, but not suspicious, and inquiries are continuing," a spokeswoman said.

Lord Steel was Liberal leader for 12 years and spent 32 years as an MP before serving as the first presiding officer of the Scottish Parliament.

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