Berwick wants to be Scottish again

Dunnett readers will likely be familiar with the history of Berwick-upon-Tweed, once one of the most important ports on the east coast of Britain, and a town which changed hands between Scotland and England at least 14 times as the border wars raged and the border itself moved back and forth. It eventually became English for the last time in the 15th century and so it has remained despite having a somewhat unique diplomatic status for a long time. However it has retained a somewhat dual character – some of its services being supplied by English authorities and some by Scottish ones. The local football team, Berwick Rangers, plays in the Scottish league and the rugby team plays in the Scottish Rugby Union leagues.

Recently there have been suggestions from members of the Scottish National Party that Berwick should return to Scottish rule and the head of Berwick Council is said to be largely in favour. The local newspaper has been running an unofficial poll and apparently about 79% of the inhabitants are in favour of becoming Scottish. Could it happen? Well the differences between Scots and English law might make things a bit tricky but as a Scot I’d love to see it. And I reckon Wat Scott would have been well chuffed!

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