THE Treasury has withdrawn a number of images depicting Lego figures showing how Scottish residents could spend money saved by backing the Union, after the toy company complained.
HMT claims that Scots could save around £1400 if they reject independence and vote to remain in the UK, and published an article on the Treasury website detailing ten ways people in Scotland could spend the UK dividend, including ‘buying 280 hotdogs at the Edinburgh Festival’ or ‘Hop on the bus between Glasgow and Edinburgh (and back) 127 times.’
But Lego demanded that the images on the list - which drew scorn from pro-independence supporters - be removed, adding that the firm was ‘politically neutral’ and that it hadn’t sanctioned the images, which the UK Government has now removed.
A spokesperson for the company added: “We wouldn’t give permission for our stock images to be used. We are a children’s toy company and therefore all of our communication is targeted towards children.
“People all over the world use Lego to depict stories and scenarios - some of it not to our knowledge. We maintain our position as being a politically neutral company.”
The SNP’s Treasury spokesman Stuart Hosie MP called the stunt ‘patronising’, adding: “It’s not surprising Lego want nothing to do with this, and demanded the Treasury remove it from their website.
“The No campaign’s bogus arguments against a Yes vote are being dismantled brick by brick.
“This is the kind of patronising attitude to Scotland we have come to expect from the Tory Treasury - presumably the establishment elite think we spend all our time eating fish and chips and pies.
“The Treasury figures have been roundly discredited, so this is just adding insult to injury.
“Real figures are that £300 billion of North Sea tax revenues have flowed from Scotland to the Treasury over the last 40 years - nearly £60,000 for every man, woman and child - and Scotland has contributed more tax per head than the rest of the UK in each one of the last 33 years.
“But all we get in return from Westminster is bogus figures and silly nonsense.”
An image of the Treasury has been used on the government website, while the article on Buzzfeed Community now features stock images.