Gordon Brown: ‘Hold your heads high’ and vote No

SCOTTISH INDEPENDENCE: GORDON Brown made an ­emotional plea to Scots to “hold their heads high” and act with dignity as he urged voters to ­reject independence in tomorrow’s historic ­referendum.

Mr Brown made the call to save the union at a Better Together rally alongside former Chancellor Alistair Darling and the main opposition Holyrood party leaders. Picture: TSPL
Mr Brown made the call to save the union at a Better Together rally alongside former Chancellor Alistair Darling and the main opposition Holyrood party leaders. Picture: TSPL

In a passionate appeal to Better Together supporters in Glasgow today, the former Labour prime minister said the SNP’s main aim was to “break every single constitutional and political link with our neighbours and friends in the United Kingdom”.

Mr Brown insisted: “We will not have this. The silent majority will be silent no more. Hold your heads up high. Hold yourselves with dignity. Have confidence. Our values are the values of the people of ­Scotland.

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“Have confidence. Our stronger Scottish Parliament meets the needs and aspirations of the Scottish people. Have confidence. Our future lies in co-operation and sharing, and not in separation and splitting apart. That unity is our strength.

He said Scots were proud of their Scottish identity, as well as being proud of the Scottish Parliament, “that we, not the ­Nationalists, created”.

In his final campaign address, Mr Brown said he was proud that the unionist parties have agreed to increase Holyrood’s powers, offering a “faster, safer, better, friendlier change than ever the Nationalists could have proposed”.

The former Labour leader warned that the SNP is leading Scotland into “a trap” – an “economic minefield where problems could implode at any time”.

In a pitch to undecided voters, Mr Brown stated that their “Scottishness” would not be diminished by remaining in the UK as he evoked the contribution Scots had made to the UK fight against fascism in the Second World War.

Mr Brown called on No supporters to reclaim the Saltire flag from the Nationalists in the final hours before polling day as he stated: “It’s not their flag, their culture, their country or their streets. It’s everyone’s flag, everyone’s culture, everyone’s country and everyone’s streets.”

Mr Brown addressed hundreds of UK supporters at a community centre in Glasgow at an eve-of-poll rally, where he stood shoulder to shoulder with his former chancellor Alistair Darling – the leader of the Better Together campaign – and Scottish Labour leader Johann Lamont, Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson and Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie.

He called on voters to reject the risks of independence, including uncertainty about currency, the threat of a default on debt, rising prices in the shops and the fear over the million jobs dependent on UK trade.

Mr Brown appealed to the Scottish electorate to “stand up and be counted”. He said: “To those people that have still got doubts and are wavering, people who were thinking about voting Yes yesterday but could be persuaded today, let us tell them about the real risks.

“This is not the fear of the unknown – this is now the risks of the known. An economic minefield where problems could implode at any time, an economic trapdoor down which we might never escape.”

Mr Brown delivered the closing speech at the “Love Scotland, Vote No rally”. He was introduced by Better Together supporter and comic Eddie Izzard.

Mr Darling was led into the hall, packed with hundreds of No supporters, by a piper.

He said: “We are on the eve of the most momentous decision that Scotland will ever take. We will decide our country’s future.”