THE BLOG

Scotland, Please Don't Leave

15/09/2014 12:51 BST | Updated 13/11/2014 10:59 GMT

My grandmother has never been to Scotland and I find this unbelievable. Being a Watson most of her life was never enough to propel her to the Scottish isles and for that I am sorry. She's been to Australia and Canada but never Caledonia. Most English southerners like myself think Scotland is extremely far away. It's closer than you think. I genuinely love visiting Scotland and although my heart belongs to London, Edinburgh has the magic. Glasgow is one of the most spectacular and underrated cities of Britain and St Andrews and Loch Lomond are beautifully serene. If you've never been, go, if you have, you know what I mean.

We need to appreciate each other more, visit each other more, and work together to build a better home.

I can't believe we're at a stage in time where the history of the United Kingdom is at such a tipping point. Scotland, please don't go. There are three burning questions: Why is there enough momentum in Scotland for such a referendum to take place? Why do English folk want them to stay? Finally, would Scotland and the rest of the UK be better off if Scotland left?

First answer: the Scottish National Party (SNP) got in at the last election, that's why there's a referendum. There haven't been riots of Scots wanting independence. The SNP feel they can go independent because of North Sea Oil, but just because they can, should they? Would more devolved powers not work just as well? After financial troubles nationalism generally surges. 2008 was a bumper financial crash but Britain's finances are improving.

We want Scotland to stay for our national identity. Although many English people haven't gone to Scotland they're the crown of our country and there are so many costly complications with independence.

Britain would not be better off. To start with, it would affect us on the world stage, economically and culturally. Not to mention migratory, trade and ownership issues. What would Scotland gain? Apart from to say, 'we're on our own'.

Does all this come down to identity? No-one likes to be told what to do. There's no doubt Scotland can stand on its own two feet but it doesn't need to stand on its own. We've had a union since the eighteenth century, how is it not fit for purpose now?

Either way the vote goes it won't mean disaster, but there is so much to lose rather than gain from independence. Please stay Scotland. We have so much to offer each other. We've always been there for each other. Let's hope it stays this way.