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Declare 'Unity Day' to mark Scotland voting No, say Tory MPs

The Conservative MPs have led calls for a public holiday in the House of Commons.

By STV News

Published 24 Mar 2016.

The day that Scotland would have become independent should be a public holiday called 'Unity Day', according to Tory MPs.

Speaking in the House of Commons several Conservative MPs voiced their support for March 24 to be made a public holiday in celebration of the 2014 referendum result. The calls were led by Flyde MP Mark Menzies who was born in Irvine, Ayrshire.

Menzies said: "I'm sure you will agree with me that we represent the greatest country on Earth and it's a privilege to do so and may we thank in that debate the 55% of the people of Scotland who had the good sense to stay with the United Kingdom, to reject budget cuts and penury.

"And Mr Speaker, may we celebrate that occasion by having a national public holiday? Let's call it Unity Day."

The calls were warmly welcomed by Conservative MP Therese Coffey, who is also deputy leader of the House of Commons.

Coffey said: "I feel a campaign coming on from my honourable friend for Unity Day, so I would endorse what you said about the important decision that was taken by the people of Scotland.

"Now we have acted on the vow, now we have fulfilled the Smith Commission, I really hope instead of arguing about process, that the Scottish Parliament and the Scottish Government, who are all up for re-election in the next few months, (will debate) the future of Scotland given these enhanced powers."

A third Tory MP, Alberto Costa, who was raised in Scotland, also welcomed the discussions for a national holiday.

"This is a serious matter. Had the SNP won the argument, your position would have disappeared today - you would have no longer been the Speaker of the British Parliament, there would not have been a British Parliament

"So may I ask (Ms Coffey) to give serious consideration to a debate for a national British holiday to celebrate Unity Day and thank the Scottish people that said 'no thanks' to the SNP."

When asked to comment an SNP spokesperson pointed STV News to a tweet by SNP MP Pete Wishart.

There are currently no plans for a public holiday by the UK Government.

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