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Referendum on Scottish Independence — [Mr Adrian Bailey in the Chair]

Part of the debate – in Westminster Hall at 5:15 pm on 13th November 2017.

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Photo of Jamie Stone Jamie Stone Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Armed Forces), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Defence) 5:15 pm, 13th November 2017

It will come as no surprise to the hon. Members gathered here today that I have no intention of supporting the notion of a second independence referendum for Scotland. I want to share an experience I had during the referendum period. It will be no surprise to the SNP Members here that I was involved in the Better Together campaign. I was at the top of a ladder, up a lamp-post in the town of Alness in Easter Ross, putting up a “No, thank you” poster. Around me there gathered a crowd of people who were not of my persuasion. I was called a traitor and told, “Get off that ladder and go back,” and all the rest of it. At that precise moment, while I was at the top of the ladder, my mobile rang. It was my wife. That was the point when Scotland’s future hung by a thread, and my wife said, “Darling, will you be sure to remember the milk and the cat food?” That brought me back to reality.

I want to talk about what other hon. Members have already referred to: the divisions. More than anything now, we have to put everything else behind us and heal those divisions. As other hon. Members have said, it got very, very bad indeed. I do not want ever to see that again in Scotland, because it did not reflect on us as a country in any good way whatsoever.