Shipping out

Angus Robertson SNP MP asserted that the Clyde would, in the future as now, be the best place to build UK naval ships (your report, 24 June).

No-one would argue that the Clyde over many years has been to the fore in shipbuilding, although these days UK naval contracts seem to be the only ones sustaining the yards.

However, a Yes vote will toll the knell for them. The current contracts will be the last; other yards in England will get the work.

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Or perhaps rUK will follow Norway’s lead and build more cheaply in Spain. Mr Robertson reportedly went on to say that finishing the two aircraft carriers (minus planes!) at Rosyth would ensure jobs for years to come – no doubt true, but then what? Nix.

So in a few short years after Yes, no more major shipbuilding in Scotland. This illustrates the SNP dilemma – projecting its idea of prosperity until maybe 2016 or 2020, without ever explaining the reality of independence for the very long term.

Voters cannot trust a wishful belief that separation will give them a secure future for all future decades; evidence that Holyrood’s ministers’ three strands of prosperity (immigration, productivity and exports) will do it is not being given.

Joe Darby



The UK armed forces source equipment from Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Sweden, Switzerland, Singapore, the USA and possibly others. However, when it comes to warships, we hear the ingenuous “the UK has never sourced warships outside the UK”.

Having closed nearly all England’s warship yards – a move extremely difficult to reverse – where does Westminster intend to get its warships from after independence?

I know of a country just next door with the yards, the workforce and the experience.

To date, the UK has not built outside its border for the very good reason that it hasn’t needed to. When it does need to, that policy will swiftly be reversed.

Barry McKay

Goldpark Place