SNP independence campaign 'starts today', conference told

Angus Robertson Angus Robertson told the conference "we will work as hard as possible"

The SNP has officially launched its drive for independence, announcing details of an "unprecedented" campaign to win the forthcoming referendum.

Campaign chief Angus Robertson told his party's conference the SNP would appeal to people from all political backgrounds to secure a "yes" vote.

The campaign has also been boosted with a £1m bequest from Scotland's former national poet, makar Edwin Morgan.

The SNP will hold the referendum near the end of the five-year parliament.

The party is coming under pressure from opposition politicians to hold the vote now, but the Nationalists say they are sticking to a manifesto commitment to stage it later, although they have still to name the date.

Addressing the final day of the first SNP conference since its landslide election win in May, Mr Robertson said: "Today, we are announcing that the independence referendum campaign is starting.

"We will work as hard as possible in an unprecedented national campaign to secure the majority 'yes' vote for a sovereign independent Scotland."

Mr Robertson, the SNP's Westminster leader, said the campaign would first seek to galvanise backing among party members, before aiming to win support for independence among people from other parties, as well as those with no political affiliation.

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Work is under way to design an independence blueprint that can command popular support”

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The Moray MP said the party would also reach out to people and communities across Scotland, street-by-street.

Mr Robertson also said the £918,000 donation from Mr Morgan, who died last year at the age of 90, was "ring-fenced" for the referendum campaign.

He told the packed conference hall in Inverness: "Fellow nationalists - this is it. It's starting.

"This is the roadmap to independence - the biggest ever campaign in our history, reaching every household, every voter in Scotland.

"We will speak with as many voters as possible - supporters, waverers and people who have yet to be convinced."

Mr Robertson declared: "This campaign is not for the SNP - it is a campaign for Scotland.

"This is a campaign for everyone who lives in this country, regardless of where you come from.

"This is a campaign to secure the best for our communities. This is a campaign to secure the best for our families and society.

"This campaign is for everyone, regardless of which party you have voted for."


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  • Comment number 111.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 110.

    Good luck Scotland, the sooner you break away from the incompetents in Whitehall the happier you will be.

  • rate this

    Comment number 109.

    The recent com-res poll showed 39% of English in favour of independence and 49% of Scots. The Scottish sample size was small though so it could be more. Historically, in referenda, the don't knows of the opinion polls turn into yes votes. The writing is on the wall.

    When the next GERS report is published it will show Scotland in fiscal surplus, while the UK runs the largest deficit in history.

  • rate this

    Comment number 108.

    100 Tony
    Thanks for your contribution Tony.
    The bonds across the old UK will always transcend politics and boundaries.
    We've never lost our relations and friends in NZ, Canada and Australia despite their independence.
    Poor MidSussex - just sad and bitter - unlike the vast majority of his neighbours.

  • rate this

    Comment number 107.

    If Scotland wants independence then its their choice. Buts its going to be one very big mess to sort out. How much of the National Debt do they take? If all the RAF and Navy bases are moved down south where is all the money to be paying all the job seekers benefits for a huge chunk of former engineers? If they still want a high speed rail link why should the rest of the country bother to pay?

  • rate this

    Comment number 106.

    Easiest way to win the vote for independence for Scotland?
    Allow the vote in England!

  • rate this

    Comment number 105.

    reply to 89

    Scotland is not a racist country, We accept all cultures and people,
    Winston Churchill once said: “Of all the small nations on earth, perhaps only the ancient Greeks surpass the Scots in their contribution to mankind....fact

  • rate this

    Comment number 104.

    Seems a bit wierd to seek independence while the Eurocracy is heading to a united states of europe.

    Independence from what, English taxpayers?

    How about independence for England, please.

  • rate this

    Comment number 103.

    @87. theoldmoaner Never one for facts were you? The English bribed Scottish Lords to sign the treaty of Union, there were riots all over Scotland when it was signed. I remember watching a documentary by the BBC where the presenter said "In Scotland's history there is one common factor, interference from England" We, not you will decide our future.

  • rate this

    Comment number 102.

    "89. maroonfever
    Yet as soon as the challenge is made from a sovereign country"

    Erm Scotland is a region, just like the principality of Wales and the Counties of Northern Ireland, Sovereign Country - look it up ..... The UK is the Sovereign Country - The Sovereign is the Sovereign of the UK... Do they not teach this is Scottish schools?

  • rate this

    Comment number 101.

    When you compare Alex Salmond against William Wallace there is a certain something missing. Political grandstander vs a proud man fighting for the best for his country. Let him win his independance battle - it is a pointless skirmish in a bigger war on ensuring fairness for everyone.

  • rate this

    Comment number 100.

    If the Scottish people want independence then let them have it and good luck to them. There's no need for some of the petty and bitter comments on here.

  • rate this

    Comment number 99.

    89.maroonfever "I wonder how many of the John Bull types on this board supported the uprisings during the Arab spring ?"

    We also support an independent scotland in greater numbers than those who live in scotland.

  • rate this

    Comment number 98.

    It's amazing how many people believe the oft repeated lie that England subsidises Scotland - simply not true. Then we hear the nonsense spouted that England "saved" Scotland's banks. These are shareholder owned ( and the vast majority of shareholders are not Scottish) companies who were highly profitable for many years, and pumped billions of pounds of corporation tax into Westminster coffers.

  • rate this

    Comment number 97.

    Cant come soon enough. then we can stop paying to subsidise Scotland.
    Of, sorry Alex, was that not what you meant?

  • rate this

    Comment number 96.

    Those expressing negatives views about Scottish support for the SNP, Mr Salmond and full independence ignore the SNP's resounding victory, awarded by all of the people of Scotland. It is not about hating the English, or capitalism, it is about the right to have a government which is elected by and representative of the people. Westminster is not that Government, It never has been.

  • rate this

    Comment number 95.

    I always forget the differences between the BNP and the SNP. The SNP's language always strikes me of being particularly racist towards English people.

  • rate this

    Comment number 94.

    The fact is that global oil reserves are in decline, and since our food is essentially made from oil (pesticides, fertilizers, machinery,ect) the oil free carrying capacity of the Earth may be as low as 1 bn. England can't feed half its current population without food imports, while Scotland has a massive food and energy surplus. In 30 to 50 years Scotland will be sending food aid south.

  • rate this

    Comment number 93.

    All is well: No arguing or bad mouthing. Independence is only a word that should not bring about any bad thoughts or actions. Everyone should be behold the word: Independence.

  • rate this

    Comment number 92.

    79 krok (of.... )
    If Westminister tried to force their version of a referendum on Scotland
    then it would bring the independence -YES- vote up to over 95%.
    Your devo max story was from a labour politician pretending he didn't
    know what it meant. AND yes, we want FULL independence.


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