Wednesday, 25 November 2015

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Ab Fab star Joanna Lumley lays stone at Union Cairn

Joanna Lumley has issued a rallying cry for Scotland not to leave the United Kingdom, saying: “I would just love us not to lose each other”.

And The Absolutely Fabulous actress gave a stone monument celebrating Scotland’s membership of the union her backing in front of a hundreds-strong crowd.

She is one of a growing list of high-profile figures to back a project to build a pro-union cairn on the England-Scotland border at Gretna.

And, asked why the project mattered to her, Ms Lumley told The Cumberland News: “I think we’re all the same and I’m three-quarters Scottish by blood. We’ve got a cottage in Scotland, a son in Lossiemouth and family there too.”

The star insisted she had no fears over independence, adding: “Whatever happens, nothing can break the bond between us.

“There are bonds of blood, love and relationships. No matter what politically happens we cannot be separated and this is a celebration of that unity. I don’t see any cracks.”

Initially known as The Auld Acquaintance, the emerging structure has now been christened the Union Cairn.

The project is being led by Penrith and the Border MP Rory Stewart. He said it meant a huge amount to have Ms Lumley’s support, adding: “I can’t think of anyone better to represent the cheerful side of the union.”

Ms Lumley’s laying of a stone, in which she had inscribed her name in deep blue with a gold edge, was followed by the assembled crowd singing Auld Lang Syne.

Renowned Cumbrian musician Annie Mawson accompanied them on the harp.

The cairn is being constructed as the countdown to Scotland going to the polls on September 18 for the independence referendum continues.

Earlier this week, world-renowned Sir Ranulph Fiennes gave the Union Cairn his backing, also laying a stone. He was supported by legendary Everest-conquering north Cumbria-based mountaineer Doug Scott.

Mr Stewart says he’s keen to create a visual symbol of how citizens of the UK can continue to work positively together.


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