Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

Scottish independence: The famous for and against – and the Scots who just want to decide for themselves

Scots say latest campaign is like 'discovering you're in a passive-aggressive relationship with over 200 celebrities'

Adam Withnall
Friday 08 August 2014 08:48 BST

A group of campaigners from the rest of the UK urging Scotland to vote against independence today released a list of celebrities who have all been saying “let’s stay together” – but it hasn’t gone down quite as planned with Scots themselves.

Coming from the same group that was behind this video entitled “Scotland, you’re my best friend”, the list includes names like Sir David Attenborough, Sir Patrick Stewart and Simon Cowell.

The letter from Let’s Stay Together was organised by TV historians Dan Snow and Tom Holland, and Snow said it was not an attempt to “bully” Scottish people or “tell them how to vote”.

But that seems to be exactly how it has been perceived by many ordinary people on both sides of the Scottish border – who took to social media to complain about the “posh, rich, publicly-educated English celebrities” who “aren’t helping”.

Jason Henderson tweeted his feelings about the campaign, writing: “If I was a No voter, I think the #LetsStayTogether chat would embarrass me into voting Yes.”

Historian Stephen Fielding called the line-up of celebrities “a real horror show” and said: “If this doesn’t make Scotland vote for its independence, I don’t know what will.”

David Mills asked what “thought process” had gone on to produce the letter, while Glaswegian Steve Greer said reading it was like “discovering that I'm in a passive-aggressive relationship with over 200 celebrities”.

The Yes campaign has had its own fair share of celebrity supporters, of course, among them Sir Sean Connery, the actor Brian Cox and the comedian Frankie Boyle.

But in its own letter responding to Let’s Stay Together’s it makes no reference to what they say people should do.

Posted on the Yes Scotland website and addressed to the 200 celebrities, it instead reads: “Dear friends.

“No need to worry - we aren't moving anywhere after a Yes vote. We too value the bonds between us and we'll still be your best friends and neighbours.

“But what we don't value is dreadful Westminster government. It may have escaped your notice, but many people are struggling to make ends meet, to find well rewarded employment, to pay fuel bills or even feed their families.

“All this despite the fact we live in one of the world's wealthiest countries. A Yes vote gives us an opportunity to change all that.

“We're sure you'll understand!

Yours sincerely,

Yes Scotland”

The full list of celebrities who signed the letter:

David Aaronovitch/ Jenny Agutter/ Sir Ben Ainslie/ Kriss Akabusi/ Roger Allam/ Kirstie Allsop/ Alexander Armstrong/ Sir David Attenborough/ Steve Backley/ Baroness Joan Bakewell/ Frances Barber/Andy Barrow/ John Barrowman/ Mike Batt/ Glen Baxter/ Stanley Baxter/ Martin Bayfield/ Mary Beard/ Sarah Beeny/Antony Beevor/Angellica Bell/ Dickie Bird/ Cilla Black/ Graeme Black/ Roger Black/ Malorie Blackman/ Ranjit Bolt/ Helena Bonham-Carter/ Alain de Botton/ William Boyd/ Tracey Brabin/ Lord Melvyn Bragg/ Jo Brand/ Gyles Brandreth/ Rob Brydon/ Louisa Buck/ Simon Callow/ Will Carling/ Paul Cartledge/ Guy Chambers/ Nick Cohen/ Michelle Collins/ Colonel Tim Collins/ Olivia Colman/ Charlie Condou/ Susannah Constantine/ Steve Coogan/ Dominic Cooper/ Ronnie Corbett/ Simon Cowell/ Jason Cowley/ Sara Cox/ Amanda Craig/ Steve Cram/ Richard Curtis/ Tom Daley/ William Dalrymple/ Richard Dawkins/ Dame Judi Dench/ Jeremy Deller/ Lord Michael Dobbs/ Jimmy Doherty/ Michael Douglas/Simon Easterby/ Gareth Edwards/ Jonathan Edwards/ Tracey Emin/ Sebastian Faulks/ Bryan Ferry/ Ranulph Fiennes/ Ben Fogle/ Amanda Foreman/ Sir Bruce Forsyth/ Neil Fox/ Emma Freud/ Bernard Gallacher/ Kirsty Gallacher/ George Galloway/ Sir John Eliot Gardiner/ Bamber Gascoigne/ David Gilmour/ Harvey Goldsmith/ David Goodhart/ Lachlan Goudie/ David Gower/ AC Grayling/ Will Greenwood/ Tamsin Greig/ Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson/ Lord Charles Guthrie/ Haydn Gwynne/ Maggi Hambling/ Mehdi Hasan/ Sir Max Hastings/ Stephen Hawking/ Peter Hennessy/ James Holland/ Tom Holland/ Tom Hollander/ Gloria Hunniford/ Conn Iggulden/ John Illsley/ Brendan Ingle/ Eddie Izzard/ Betty Jackson/ Sir Mike Jackson/ Howard Jacobson/ Sir Mick Jagger/ Baroness PD James/ Griff Rhys Jones/ Terry Jones/ Christopher Kane/ Sir Anish Kapoor/ Ross Kemp/ Paul Kenny/ Jemima Khan/ India Knight/ Martha Lane Fox/ Baroness Doreen Lawrence/ Tory Lawrence/ Kathy Lette/ Rod Liddle/ Louise Linton/ John Lloyd (journalist)/ John Lloyd (producer)/ Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber/ Gabby Logan/ Kenny Logan/ Sarah Lucas/ Dame Vera Lynn/ James May/ Margaret MacMillan/ Stephen Mangan/ Davina McCall/ Sir Ian McGeechan/ Heather McGregor/ Andy McNab/ John Michie/ David Mitchell/ Lord John Monks/ Lewis Moody/ Michael Morpurgo/ Bill Morris/ David Morrissey/ Philip Mould/ Al Murray/ Sir Paul Nurse/ Andy Nyman/ Peter Oborne/ Sir Michael Parkinson/ Fiona Phillips/ Andy Puddicombe/ Lord David Puttnam/ Anita Rani/ Esther Rantzen/ Sir Steve Redgrave/ Derek Redmond/ Pete Reed/ Lord Martin Rees/ Peter Reid/ Baroness Ruth Rendell/ Sir Cliff Richard/ Hugo Rifkind/ Sir Tony Robinson/ David Rowntree/ Ian Rush/ Greg Rutherford/ CJ Sansom/ June Sarpong/ Simon Schama/ John Sessions/ Sandie Shaw/ Helen Skelton/ Sir Tim Smit/ Dan Snow/ Peter Snow/ Phil Spencer/ David Starkey/Sir Patrick Stewart/ Lord Jock Stirrup/ Neil Stuke/ Sting/ Tallia Storm/ David Suchet/ Alan Sugar/ Graeme Swann/ Stella Tennant/ Daley Thompson/ Alan Titchmarsh/ James Timpson/ Kevin Toolis/ Lynne Truss/ Gavin Turk/ Roger Uttley/ David Walliams/ Zoë Wanamaker/ Robert Webb/ Richard Wentworth/ Sir Alan West/ Dominic West/ Kevin Whateley.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in