More evidence of government push for indyref 2 as Culture Secretary announces increased funding for winter festivals

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop – clearly the Minister for Slush after her escapade in a highly suspect and unnecessary funding for the T-in the Park music festival – has announced increased funding for Scotland’s Winter Festivals, with the government press release trumpeting that ‘People across Scotland are set to experience the country’s biggest ever Winter Festival celebrations this year.’

A record £390,000 is to support 22 key cultural events which will form parts of Scotland’s Winter Festivals 2015/16 programme. An additional £75,000 has been approved this year to expand the line-up to more areas.

In addition, the Scottish Government has provided BEMIS [Black and Ethnic Minorities in Scotland] with a funding contribution of £46,050 to support the multi-cultural celebration of the 2015 Year of Food and Drink and Scotland’s Winter Festivals 2015/16. A key element of the wider programme will support specific activity designed by Scotland’s minority ethnic communities in support of the Winter Festivals.

It would be naive in the extreme not to be aware that this is part of the deliberate construction of a feel good bubble to wrap around the vote in the May 2016 Scottish Election. Whatever is or is not in the SNP manifesto for that election, there can be absolutely no doubt that a stonking pro-SNP vote, which is certain to be the case – will powerfully ramp up the existing pressure for indyref 2 on the fearful Leader and Deputy Leaders of the SNP, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Deputy First Minister, Finance Secretary, John Swinney.

The leadership has clearly given departmental ministers the latitude to provide financial support to communities across the country for events, initiatives, facilities and activities – and to promise more to come in matters they cannot yet address, by starting ‘consultations’ on matters like more devolution for islands.

All governments through history get stuck into the pork barrel when it suits them but it has to be said that the SNP Government is by some way the most deliberately strategised in doling out the moolah. The sleight of hand is that this is no more than taxpayers money coming home again.

The celebrations begin in the lead up to St Andrew’s Day on 30th November with major events in Aberdeen, Argyll and Bute, Dundee, East Lothian, Fife, Glasgow, Dundee and Perth and Kinross. The Scottish Storytelling Centre in Edinburgh will also host a St Andrew’s Day Celebration event. The money also supports the Virgin Money Street of Light which begins on St Andrew’s Day as part of Edinburgh’s Christmas.

Five Hogmanay celebrations will be supported through the fund, with events in The Western Isles, East Lothian, Edinburgh, Falkirk and Stirling.

A range of events will also take place across Scotland to celebrate Burns Night, including Burns Unplugged at the National Museums Scotland, Edinburgh. The Scottish Storytelling Centre will host Burnsfest 2016, while the Big Burns Supper Festival will be held in Dumfries and Galloway. A Big Burns Stramash in the Highlands and Alloway 1759 will take place in South Ayrshire, while Burns Birthday in Mauchline will be held in East Ayrshire.

Further information on all the individual events can be found online here.

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Related Articles & Comments

  • And, in the meantime, all health and social services struggle to find enough money to deliver front line services to those in most need. Shame on the SNP.

    I also wonder what “underspend” will be exposed later for this financial year.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

    Lowry October 2, 2015 2:33 pm Reply
    • Festivals and trying to buy a ‘feel good’ factor isn’t going to wash, people want results, our NHS and Schools are a mess, the winter along with the pressure on the health service hasn’t arrived yet.
      Ms Sturgeon is starting to feel the heat, don’t kid yourself what were seeing is only the tip of the iceberg.

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 2

      Richard October 2, 2015 3:20 pm Reply
    • Lowry, The Scottish government underspent its budget by almost £350m in 2014/15, a new report has revealed.

      Auditor General Caroline Gardner found that total net expenditure over the financial year was more than £32bn – but £347m less than budgeted for.

      There were underspends in the social justice, education, infrastructure and health budgets, while justice and rural affairs overspent.
      What was Ms Cunningham shouting about today?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 3

      Richard October 2, 2015 3:29 pm Reply
  • Well done the SNP Scottish government for supporting winter festivals throughout the country.
    Every help given to small or large communities to engage in local events is money well spent.
    As for Independence referendum 2 or 3 (remember being cheated undemocratically in 1979) this will be happening whether there are a million or no winter festivals and we all know that.
    Why does “for argyll” make such a stupid and pathetic link?

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 4 Thumb down 12

    Keitho October 2, 2015 5:58 pm Reply
    • Keitho, Graeme McCormick & Machmaolian – now, we all know at times like this it is customary for the party in power to spend a few pennies as sweeteners in the run-up to an election so nothing new here. And as you say Graeme, nothing wrong with giving a few sweeteners to your mates, after all they’ve been doing it for years in Westminster.

      The thing that’s puzzling me though, Michelle Thomson! I don’t doubt the FM is telling the truth when she states she knew nothing about it. No one in the party knew about it! Don’t buy that one.

      Makes you think though, if this apparent low-life can be made a party spokesperson in Westminster on Business, Innovation and Skills for the SNP, what else might the party of missed during the screening process. Surely there couldn’t be anyone else of potential disrepute, could there?

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 3

      John M October 2, 2015 8:32 pm Reply
      • John, I tend to agree with you,

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

        Richard October 2, 2015 8:53 pm Reply
      • Low life?
        If I were to start naming the real low life’s in Wastemonster,past and present,I would crash FA,s server!
        When did she set fire to a hotel,molest children,cheat the country by buying a moat house,etc,etc??

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

        Hugh Jazz October 3, 2015 8:22 am Reply
        • Would you not describe someone who conned £1,0000+++ from vulnerable old people as low life?

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 1

          John M October 3, 2015 8:48 am Reply
          • Are you making a statement about Gorgon Broon ,who robbed millions from pensioners pension pots?
            By the way,in Scotland you are incident until proved guilty!!
            In Ukok land,anything goes.
            O/T just had a look at the cuts coming from Argyll and Bute Council( Ukok Run).
            This will be the end for the onion parties.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

            Hugh Jazz October 3, 2015 11:40 am
          • Machmaolain – you appear to be confusing my statement with the current police investigation into alleged irregularities and the misuse of mortgage financing.

            Thomson has not denied buying properties at ‘knock down’ prices, indeed her current solicitor (not the one struck off for professional misconduct in relation to 13 property purchases on behalf of Thomson’s business M&F property solutions) is on record as saying the people she bought the houses from were grateful at the time. No regrets eh?

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

            John M October 3, 2015 1:18 pm
  • Typical: unionists who would deprive our young folk the joy of T in the Park for the sake of a few pennies each.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 10

    Graeme McCormick October 2, 2015 7:13 pm Reply
    • Agreed and funny how the unionists don’t want to mention £4000,000,000.00 of perfectly airworthy nimrod getting scrapped because the balloons in Wastemonster forgot that they couldn’t afford to run them!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 6

      Hugh Jazz October 2, 2015 8:03 pm Reply
      • They were not airworthy and there was no prospect of them becoming airworthy without hundreds of millions more being spent modifying them; the project was a disaster from the point BAE suggested reusing old airframes would be cheaper than building from scratch and the MoD agreed to it. It also prevented the possibility of ever offsetting the development costs by selling to other countries, as there were no spare airframes.

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

        db October 3, 2015 5:07 pm Reply
  • Amazing how more significant inputs to a possible INDYREF2 are missed.

    No one has referred to the SNP ‘s internal debate re the currency issue.

    The inner circles of the SNP have concluded that obfuscation and no commitment to proposing a separate currency for an Indpendent was a significant reason for losing the referendum.

    Addressing and resolving the implications of a ” Scottish Currency” are now regarded as a pre-requisite to consider any INDYREF2

    How long will that take??? Many many years ..I recommend this link to Douglas Fraser’s “Putting money on Indyref 2” for a cold shower of realism for those those who think INDYRef2 is a given

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

    robtrythall October 3, 2015 9:37 am Reply
    • Treefall
      No one thinks Independence 3 (remember 1979) is a given.
      Hard work on many issues will be required, but the lies of the last “better together” campaign will not have the effect they had.
      As for John M’s comments …….. low life like him slinging mud on “for argyll” is par for the politician eunuch.
      Lets wait and see before making any judgement.
      Poor Richard?
      Anyone for Celtic Connections, the worlds largest winter festival?
      Remember how it began? Humble beginnings.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

      Keitho October 3, 2015 10:45 am Reply
      • keitho

        you seem to be confusing two issues:

        ( 1) is the possibility of holding Indyref 2

        (2) actually winning Indyref2

        I am suggesting that holding Indyref 2 is an indefinite prospect , as does Douglas Fraser in his article until the SNP come up with a credible independent currency for an Independent Scotland

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

        robtrythall October 3, 2015 4:44 pm Reply
        • In Nicola I trust,
          In John Swinney I trust,
          Douglas Fraser, well isn’t he a dodo ?

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

          Keitho October 3, 2015 8:53 pm Reply
    • For Argyll has addressed the issue of the ongoing preparation of a plan for a Scottish currency and the timescales involved.
      Memory says that this was in an article on Jim Sillars, who called for a Scottish currency to be Plan A for indyref 2, nailing the unreliable Salmond proposition which shaped the Sturgeon White Paper on the currency an independent Scotland would use as the reason for the failure of indyref 1.
      We agree that the core leadership of the SNP – Sturgeon and Swinney – are not ready for indy and do not want to go for it; but this is a heavily divided issue with Cabinet Secretaries having come out in support of independence now, in line with the momentum of the SNP’s mighty grassoots.
      We are seeing, on almost a daily basis, evidence of many kinds and in many areas where government ministers are providing a variety of platforms to support a sweeping SNP vote in May 2016.
      If that vote is, as we expect it to be, a major victory, it really doesn’t matter what is or is not in the SNP manifesto for that election. The pressure from within for an immediate push for a second referendum will then be very hard for Sturgeon and Swinney to resist, whatever their cautious personal preferences.
      They are riding a tiger.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

      newsroom October 3, 2015 11:49 am Reply
  • Just checked odds for the result of Indi Ref 2.
    Paddy Power have Yes ahead!!
    Fill your boots,guys!!!

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 6

    Hugh Jazz October 3, 2015 11:42 am Reply

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