Resort Scots’ vote relief

John Grierson and Liz Grierson from the Fairhaven on Woodfield Road on the Scottish referendum

John Grierson and Liz Grierson from the Fairhaven on Woodfield Road on the Scottish referendum

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Scots in Blackpool were 
relieved and delighted the country of their birth voted not to split from Great Britain.

The historic referendum on Scottish independence on Thursday was a close-run thing and, despite a strong surge of feeling last week in favour of severing ties with the rest of Great Britain, it 
delivered a no vote.

Blackpool’s traditionally strong tartan population said it was better for the whole 
nation in the long run that we all stand together.

Liz Grierson, who runs the Fairhaven Private Hotel, on Woodfield Road, with her husband John, said she was relieved that Scots voted no.

She said: “Maybe 30 years ago, Scotland could have stood alone, but not these days.

“There were so many unanswered questions about welfare, deficit mortgage rates.

“What would have happened if there was ever another major war?

“The young people in Scotland voting have never lived through that. Scotland on its own would be in danger of being blown away.

“I am relieved because when I come to retire I know I can go back to the same old Scotland I know.”

Kate Hulme, from the Fairview Hotel in Woodfield Road, said: “I think it’s a good thing. We are the United Kingdom, and if Scotland was to leave then that would open the flood gates.

“I was slightly annoyed with Andy Murray and Susan Boyle who said they were 
going to vote yes.

“They and many others have done very well for themselves from Great Britain.

“I don’t think the oil will last for ever, and with employers such as the Royal Bank of Scotland and Standard Life threatening to pull out, you wondered how Scotland would sustain itself financially in the future.

“The person I felt sorry for in all of this was the Queen. She could have been the last Queen of Great Britain, yet she remained so calm and dignified throughout the whole debate. She was wonderful.”

Coun Jim Elmes, of Blackpool Council’s Marton ward, said: “I went to bed last night Scottish and I woke up this morning... and I’m still Scottish. Seriously, I’m glad the Scots voted to stay with the union. We are all better 
together – all one nation.

“They would have lost a lot of employment up there if they had left, the British Government puts a lot of work that way, what with ship building , Trident, the banks and civil service.”

Craig McOmish, who runs the Fleetwood Beach Kiosk, followed the vote with interest. He said: “I’m pleased that Scotland is staying in the union, and am happy with the way things are with the MPs in 
Parliament.

“I was concerned that if Scotland did vote for independence that the small businesses would be hit hard with suppliers costs going up.

“I came down here 19 years ago and go back quite often but I think we are better together.”

Jim Britton, who runs the Big Butts sandwich shop in Church Street, and who has lived in England since 1967, said: “I’m pleased with the result. I just think if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

“I also think the promises the Government made about greater powers to win over voters will open a whole new can of worms. They shouldn’t have done it. I believe that all the countries should be equal with equal powers.”

Businesses on the Fylde too expressed relief at the vote. Ben Jones, chief executive of energy broker BES Utilities, said: “As a Lancashire-based company, we are pleased that the Union will continue.

“It makes trade between Scotland and England that much easier and cheaper compared to having separate countries, and this will only benefit our customers wherever they are.

“However, the vote was still close, and it shouted out loud and clear that Scotland wants more independence.

“Hopefully, all of the political parties have understood this now and will act accordingly.”

Simon Allport, senior partner at accountants EY, said: “Although Scotland remains in the Union, change and further devolution of powers will still be forthcoming in the form of concessions from Westminster and greater control for Scotland.

“This will fuel discussions at local level on whether or not there should be further devolution within England and Wales, with Greater Manchester and the North West having been held up as potentially suitable destinations for powers in the run-up to the 
referendum.”