Never underestimate the SNP

In his latest blog our Political Editor, Peter MacMahon, looks back at the SNP's history and their biggest challenge to date.

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Preview with First Minister prior to keynote speech

Mr Salmond's speech tonight is likely to make more mention of those good relations between England and Scotland in this region.

But he will also give a concrete example of how independence could benefit the area, with a plan for improved high speed rail links.

Peter MacMahon has been speaking to the First Minister this afternoon.

'The independence dragon' comes to England

MSP Jackson Carlaw on Salmond's visit over the border on St George's day.

“People in England will certainly recognise a dragon when they see it, particularly a toothless one. Meanwhile, the people of Scotland look forward to slaying the independence dragon on September 18.”

– Jackson Carlaw MSP, Scottish Conservative deputy leader

Better Together: 'Strong ties' at risk

In response to Alex Salmond's visit to Carlisle, to discuss the implications of a 'yes' vote, Better Together say he risks straining cultural and historical ties between England and Scotland.

"People will find it hard to take seriously Alex Salmond's claim that he wants to be best pals with England if we leave the UK given that he has spent a career blaming the English for all Scotland's problems. As part of the UK we have strong ties of culture and history - the only thing putting this at risk is separation."

– Better Together spokesperson

Salmond: 'Independent Scotland should keep the pound'

Alex Salmond will insist that Scotland keeps the pound if the country becomes independent.

Mr Salmond is visiting Carlisle today to encourage people that a 'yes' vote in the referendum would be good for local business.

He is due to say that people in the North of England will still be able to trade and work with an independent Scotland without changing currency.

"People would still live in Annan and work in Carlisle, or live in Penrith and work in Lockerbie. Friends and family would continue to visit each other. We would still watch many of the same television programmes. People from Scotland and England would still celebrate personal unions - by getting married in Carlisle Cathedral or perhaps by going to Gretna instead."

– Alex Salmond MSP, First Minister

It is still undecided what currency would be used in the event of Scottish independence.

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Reintroducing a border would be a 'tragedy'

Alex Salmond will be visiting Carlisle today to encourage the Border community to back the 'yes' vote in the independence referendum.

He is due to say that people of North England would still be able to work and trade in an independent Scotland without changing currency.

However Rory Stewart, MP for Penrith and the Border, has argued against reintroducing a border between England and Scotland.

MSP not convinced a 'yes' vote will benefit Carlisle

Alex Salmond will deliver a keynote speech in Carlisle this evening.

Scottish Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie says the First Minister's policy will not benefit the economy this side of the border.

“People in Carlisle will be surprised to see the First Minister. His entire economic policy is based on undercutting the Carlisle economy on corporation tax, as indeed he plans to do to the rest of the north of England. “His policy is nothing more than a cross-border economic raid. It is designed to strip investment out of England. People in Carlisle should be wary.”

– Willie Rennie MSP, Scottish Liberal Democrats
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