This evening The Scotsman will celebrate its 200th birthday with a reception at the Scottish Parliament. Readers, staff, former staff, advertisers, MSPs and others who have a close association with the paper will gather to celebrate the title’s role in the history of modern Scotland, and to toast its continued health.
The Holyrood venue is apposite. Twenty years ago, The Scotsman backed devolution and played its part in the creation of the new institution. The last two decades have not been easy for either body, and strong challenges remain.
It would be wrong to think that journalists and politicians are friends. It is the role of The Scotsman to hold our public bodies to account. To question, to peer into places that others would rather we didn’t. Our Scottish Parliament needs a healthy, indigenous media and (most of) our MSPs know this is part of a healthy democracy.
But we also share a common aim. The Scotsman – just like our politicians – wants Scotland to be successful, happier, healthier, stronger and more productive. And that’s a shared goal that we should all rally around.