Scottish Independence: Yes vote would be 'worse than the banking crisis', says Alistair Darling

Mr Darling's No camp may make a formal complaint about allegations that the Scottish National Party threatened businessmen with 'retribution'

Political Editor

The impact of Scotland voting for independence could be more damaging for the UK than the 2008 banking crisis, Alistair Darling has warned.

The leader of the Better Together campaign recalled that, as Chancellor, he was told that RBS cashpoints were about to run dry as the bank went bust. He contrasted this temporary crisis with the permanent implications of a Yes vote in the referendum on 18 September.

In an interview with The Independent, Mr Darling said: “Being told the world’s largest bank has three hours before it collapses does provide a shock to the system. But the decision on Scotland is forever. It’s irrevocable, irreversible.

"If we get it wrong, it will have a profound effect, not just on Scotland, but the rest of the UK. The stakes in the banking crisis were big; this is so much bigger.”

 

Mr Darling revealed that his No camp may make a formal complaint to the Electoral Commission about allegations that the Scottish National Party threatened some businessmen with “retribution” if they spoke out against independence.

He said: “It is shining a light on Scotland that frankly brings shame on our country. When I first heard about it over two years ago, I did not believe it. Now people are speaking out because it is happening to so many people. What worries me is that, if Scotland became independent, the same people doing these things would be in government. It strikes at the heart of the campaign and the conduct of public life. It should not be tolerated.”

Video: What do the Scottish think of the campaign for independence?

Angus Robertson, the SNP’s Westminster leader, said he “totally refutes” allegations on Channel 4’s Dispatches last night that he put pressure on the Scotch Whisky Association to keep out of the independence debate. “It is high time the UK Government retracted its bogus claims on the establishment of an independent Scotland, and apologised,” he said.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Rita Ora will replace Kylie Minogue as a judge on The Voice 2015
tv
Life and Style
tech
Life and Style
Alan Turing, who was convicted of gross indecency in 1952, was granted a royal pardon last year
life
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Life and Style
life
Arts and Entertainment
Tennis player Andy Murray's mum Judy has been paired with Anton du Beke for Strictly Come Dancing. 'I'm absolutely delighted,' she said.
tvJudy Murray 'struggling' to let Anton Du Beke take control on Strictly
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
Arts and Entertainment
The cover of Dark Side of the Moon
musicCan 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition? See for yourself
Sport
New Zealand fly-half Aaron Cruden pictured in The Zookeeper's Son on a late-night drinking session
rugby
Extras
indybest
Voices
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
voicesMaybe the new app will make it more normal to reach out to strangers
Arts and Entertainment
Salmond told a Scottish television chat show in 2001that he would also sit in front of a mirror and say things like,
tvCelebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits