Supporters of Scottish independence marched in Stirling on Saturday, the march went from Kings Park to Bannockburn, where Robert the Bruce defeated King Edward in 1314. The march took place to celebrate the 704th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn
Organisers of the event estimate that around 8000 people attended the march, although some outlets have reported that Police Scotland estimated attendance to be around 15000. There were also guest speakers in attendance at the event.
The march was organised by the group All Under One Banner (AUOB), whose website describes them as: “We are a Pro-Independence organisation whose core aim is to march at regular intervals until Scotland is Free. We will host public processions in support of Scotland regaining Independence. Marching as All Under One Banner, we are open to everyone who desires to live in an independent nation.”
AUOB have hosted marches to support Independence in other Scottish cities, a recent one seeing 60000 people march in Glasgow, and have planned more marches to be held later in 2018.
A spokesperson for AUOB, Neil McKay, said: “We greatly look forward to tomorrow’s massive demonstration for independence at Bannockburn when the modern-day clans, the Yes family, will gather at Kings Park and march for Bannockburn Field leaving at 1.30pm sharp.
“This demonstration has profound significance for even though the Bruce and his captains were in command 704 years ago at this most famous Scottish battle, it was nonetheless the ordinary people of Scotland who made the victory for Scotland.
“And so the Yes Clans descend on Stirling to once again prove that the people of Scotland demand Independence now and that it is the people who are driving this movement and who will be victorious at the fast approaching Indyref2.
“As the independence movement works from the ground level up, we have witnessed the effects that our street demonstrations have had on the SNP leadership, giving them the courage to stand up to Westminster’s tyranny knowing that back home the people are showing the way and stating loud and clear that the way is now.”
MPs and MSPs attended the march and the Scottish National Party MSP for Clackmannanshire and Dunblane, Keith Brown, took to twitter to describe the atmosphere as “tremendous.”
Bruce Crawford, the SNP MSP for Stirling praised a “peaceful and fun atmosphere.”
Stewart Hosie, the SNP MP for Dundee East tweeted about a “fantastic turnout and a glorious day.”
One marcher took to Twitter and described yesterday’s march as; “A great show of passion and humanity.”
Another marcher even described the march as “emotional.”
One marcher said they had a “great day” and that they were “full of hope, determination, and love.”
One marcher spoke of Stirling residents that had come out of their houses to greet marchers as they walked past; “I loved walking through the housing estates at AUOB Bannockburn, lots of folk out to greet us, one young lad was proudly holding up a saltire he had painted.”
Another thanked residents for putting out bowls of water so that marcher’s dogs could stop for a drink on a hot day.
Many marchers praised the police officers at the march for engaging with the marchers and keeping them safe. One officer was even photographed carrying a tired child’s scooter.
Although opponents of Scottish Independence also went out into Stirling, with the Conservative MP for Stirling, Stephen Kerr, and other Conservative members in Stirling hosting a Street Surgery.
Stephen Kerr MP and Murdo Fraser MSP for Mid-Scotland and Fife also took to twitter to criticise anti-Conservative banners on the march.
The march to Bannockburn was held on the same day as the people’s vote march in London, who were calling for a vote on any final Brexit deal exactly 2 years after Britain voted to leave the EU.