'There are people who think we are a province of England or the UK'

JOHN SQUIRES, 26"Coming from the US, Scotland's image is probably the castles and the Highlands, the countryside and the wild open spaces and ragged landscape. I don't really see anything negative about the place - other than maybe the weather, but you can't really do anything about that."


"When I think of Scotland, I think of landscape and maybe my stereotypes were based on what I'd seen in the movies with the landscape and history. Having been here, there's definitely a basis for that, but everyone I've met has been very, very nice and welcoming. It's not that I didn't expect that but its also nice to know that when your travelling. I've been in Asia and Germany in the past month and the people here are very friendly. Even before I came here, there was no negative reputation and that's why I wanted to visit."


Retired soldier

"I don't think there should be too many changes in Scotland. Things like castles and tartan are part of the tradition and I think Scotland's reputation is all right - there's nothing wrong with it. Change happens and you can't do anything about that, but I love Scotland and wouldn't do anything to change it."



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"I would say that Scotland has a strong cultural identity in relation to history and also the more hackneyed tourist-driven things. A lot of my work contacts are in North American and a lot of people there know about us, but there are a lot of people there who think we are a province of England or the UK."


Retired merchant seaman "Scotland has a great shipbuilding reputation and I think it's well known that Scots invented the steam engine and Alexander Graham Bell invented the phone. I've travelled to Australia, New Zealand, Finland and Russia, but the Scots are really friendly. Scotland's reputation for whisky is also a big thing."



"I came to study here from Paris, but before I came I had heard of the haggis and castles. In France, though, people don't see much difference across the UK. Before I came here I didn't realise the important difference between Wales, Scotland and England. For us, it's just the UK. I like it so much here, though and want to find a job and stay here."


"I think the reputation is far more progressive than just things tartan and castles. I see it as very much part of the country that has history and skills that we can all benefit from. I'm from Solihull, but work with a lot of Scottish people this is why I think everybody's got something to bring to the party. Very few Scots I know give a false impression of themselves."

Patsy Palmer

"Coming from England, I love the people in Scotland - they're great and very kind. Some people say the Scots are dour, but I think they've got a great sense of humour. They're maybe conscious of the fact that they're relying a lot on their tourist industry, so it pays to be nice. I've found everyone really helpful."