BRIGHTON, Hove and Sussex have historically had strong links with Scotland and many of us have relatives, friends or other contacts in the North of Britain.

There have been numerous sporting connections with the Scottish over the years including those in the field of golf, horse racing and football. Brighton and Hove Albion have had many Scottish players, the most recent of whom include Craig Mackail-Smith and Gordon Greer. Indeed, the word Albion actually means Britain or Great Britain.

In addition, there are strong cultural and media links with the Scottish people which includes those with the BBC and ITV (with their own devolved services) and associations with theatre, dance, music and the arts. There is even a Scottish Dance Group in Brighton.

Many of us buy Scottish goods which include food products like fish, marmalade, biscuits and dairy products, one of the numerous products which are manufactured in that part of the UK or one of the financial services provided by Insurance Companies, Banking or Mutual Societies.

There are obvious cultural and geographical connections within Britain and it would be wrong to break these up unnecessarily with a Vote for Independence.

Many organisations are British or UK-anchored and the sheer cost and disruption caused to all of these long-standing structures, including Health, Environment, Education and Welfare Organisations would be damaging to all concerned. Let us not forget that many Charities and Voluntary Organisations are also British/UK orientated even if they are partly devolved in their focus.

It is a shame that both the SNP and the Green Party support such a damaging policy of Independence which would cause so much disruption to the whole of the UK.

Being part of the UK brings us all mutual benefits including advantages in economic strength, security and safety. We can all encourage those people we know who live in Scotland to vote No to Independence in September and Yes to being the best of friends.

Rob Heale