I READ of murmurings regarding an independence referendum without UK government approval. This is a bad idea; witness Catalonia. I lived there from 2007 to 2010, teaching English in a small village 85 kilometres from Barcelona. It was a staunch Catalan-speaking area with most of the locals inclined towards independence from Spain.

While teaching adult classes with a reasonable level of English, independence was often a topic. Discussing politics can be a dodgy subject but students learn English much quicker using something they are passionate about. Never once did anyone agree with a referendum without the Spanish government’s approval. Even the most rabid Catalonian thought it was a bad idea, no matter how much they wanted it. Later events showed how right they were. Social unrest, no independence, with some of the leaders still in jail and the main man, Carles Puigdemont, in exile.

I would love to see Scotland as an independent nation. Especially since there is a distinct possibility of a UK ruled by a hard-right Tory party, led by a man of decidedly dodgy provenance. Fortunately, it would appear that Nicola Sturgeon is taking a more pragmatic approach and hopefully she can quell any hot-headed attempt at an illegal referendum. It would only end in tears and make Scotland even more divided than England.

Ian Smith, Symington.

THERE is much talk that some delegates at the SNP Conference will demand a Plan B option should Westminster continue to refuse a Section 30 order to legitimise a second Scottish independence referendum.

One way forward would be to have a single-item manifesto on independence at the next Holyrood election, requiring a majority of both seats and votes cast. This would not be without danger to the SNP but they are going to have to take the plunge at some point.

If Westminster then continues to refuse a Section 30 order, Plan B would be to take the matter to the Courts, armed with clear evidence of what the people want and if necessary also testing the validity of resiling from the Treaty of Union of 1707, as its terms have been breached many times - something the SNP seem very reluctant to discuss.

It would need to be clearly understood by the electorate that voting for the SNP in a single-item manifesto Holyrood election, would not in itself bring independence but simply show beyond reasonable doubt the wishes of the Scottish people to return to being a sovereign state once again.

This would satisfy the SNP desire to proceed under a Section 30 order, failing which referral to the Courts would be Plan B and the Unionists could not argue there was no demand. Although influenced by Brexit, this process would not be dependent on the outcome of Brexit removing the need for undue haste in decision making. Furthermore, if, as looks likely, the UK is out of the EU, we should have a considerably better idea of how the EU views Scotland as they would no longer be constrained in what they say by the UK being a member state.

Then and only then, would a second independence referendum be held allowing time to present information on what an independent Scotland would look like economically, socially, politically and what the long term aspirations are. Paramount in this is our relationship with the others of these islands and how we will work together for best outcomes but as an equal partner.

Alan M Morris, Blanefield, Glasgow

I AGREE with Kevin McKenna (“This is the sort of Scotland I want to live in”, October 12) about the kind of Scotland we should all want to live in, as emulated in the recent ‘Declaration for Independence’. But I take issue with his assertion that the SNP "has yet to espouse a coherent and consistent position on Brexit”.

I can only assume he is referring to the lack of participation by the SNP at the UK Government’s negotiation table, a situation totally of the latter’s making as no invites have been forthcoming.

As one who watches the Brexit fiasco unfold daily, the clear message I have received over the SNP’s Brexit position is one of a united party, united in its complete opposition to Brexit and especially a no-deal Brexit, in recognition of the wishes of the Scots who voted to remain.

A united party and Brexit is something of a contradiction in time as seen by the Government and main opposition at Westminster. But SNP MPs have consistently demonstrated a united front on their opposition to Brexit.

Catriona C Clark, Banknock.

IT was astonishing to read Kevin McKenna’s Jacobin-like view that, in his idea of an independent Scotland, “ownership of land, property and natural resources showed be reviewed urgently and then determined by a system of local people’s tribunals prior to redistribution”.

I thought perhaps that some lessons may have been learned from the outcomes of the French and Russian revolutions but apparently not. Despite my working-class background, the fact that I own my own home would define me, in his eyes, as a kulak whose property could be expropriated in the name of the state and someone who would require re-education in some sort of gulag. Definitely not the Scotland I want to live in.

Alan Ramage, Edinburgh.