FIRST they came for our Tunnocks teacakes after the company’s owner rebranded them “the great British teacake”, then it was the clootie dumpling manufacturer who had the audacity to hand one to Boris Johnson at a food festival in Downing Street. The pile-on left her in tears.

The latest outburst of rage is the reopening of the café at Edinburgh Castle. The issue? The café’s name: the Redcoat Café. The name hasn’t changed in the last 32 years and in that time only had one complaint. Nationalist politicians raised the issue on social media and just waited for the faithful to do their stuff. First of all they insist they will no longer go there; if they’d been there, surely they’d have known what it was called, don’t you think? Then they demanded it change its name. One even went so far as to declare “it was not a request” on social media. Then there was the online petition stating that “the current name of the cafe is deeply offensive to the Scottish people and perpetuates a painful legacy associated with the oppression of our nation”.

What has happened to our once-tolerant society? Where does this anglophobic bile come from, as that is ultimately what this is? Why do we have people who seriously believe we are an oppressed people? Perhaps they need to visit countries which genuinely do suffer from oppression, as this is not how Scotland can with any honesty be described.

How dare anything have a name or be connected in any way with our British history? Many are pointing out that it is an ignorance of our history and while that may be so, it is the anger and disgust for our nearest neighbours that worries me most. We keep being told that nationalism is all about believing in ourselves. Scotland is a great country they tell us. I’m afraid Scotland has lost her way with the nationalists in charge. There is an element now, emboldened by Nicola Sturgeon claiming we can have a Tory-free Scotland, that no longer hide their hate for anything British. These individuals really believe that they speak for a nation and in their minds “once Scotland is independent” we will all be of one mind. Even if they did achieve independence, we cannot change our history; it is complex and nuanced.

I fear the café’s name will be changed to keep the peace but that will only make them believe that they can demand everyone bows to their pressure. Whatever will be next?

Jane Lax, Aberlour.

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Disdain for the Highlands

NAMING an Edinburgh Castle establishment the Redcoat Café is insensitive to say the least and the fact that many Scots joined, or in the aftermath of Culloden were dragooned into, the British Army is irrelevant. The Redcoats are universally associated with “Butcher” Cumberland and his scorched earth policy and merciless treatment of anybody who stood against him, during and after the bloody events on April 16,1746.

All around Inverness, men were murdered just for wearing Highland dress, women were raped and killed and children slaughtered. At Cumberland’s command, a ship full of prisoners was sent south to London. On board were 157 Jacobites. So appalling were the conditions on board that just 49 were alive on reaching Tilbury, with survivors reporting inhuman treatment on board, including being whipped for talking Gaelic.

Highlanders were forbidden from carrying weapons and the clan system was abolished. Clan chiefs had their lands forfeited, and many men were captured, executed, or exiled or conscripted into the British Army. The smashing of the feudal clan society and the replacement of chiefs by landowners, plus the willingness of Highlanders themselves to embrace emigration, laid the grounds for the enforced Clearances of the 19th century. Traditional Gaelic culture was ruthlessly battered down and the English language was enforced across the land by rigorous teaching.

This disdain for the Scottish Highlands was replicated this week by the Labour Together Director Josh Simons, a close ally of Keir Starmer and central to Labour’s direction of travel, who told LBC Radio that people-smuggling gangs should be put on a barge and sent to the north of Scotland. He wasn’t concerned about human rights in Rwanda, just the cost of the Tory immigration policy.

Fraser Grant, Edinburgh.

• FAR be it for me to criticise Sir Tom Devine on the subject of history, but his comment about religion dividing Scots during the ’45 ("How history’s shifting sands and the popularity of a hit television show landed Redcoats Cafe in the soup", The Herald, February 14) seems a bit simplistic. Within the Jacobite side there were those in some clans who declined to turn out for Bonnie Prince Charlie whilst others avidly chose to follow him. Indeed this occurred in my own clan. It wasn’t about religion, it was more to do with realism.

Many of the wiser clan leaders doubted his chances of success without the support of the French and that turned out to be the case. Equally those Lowlanders who celebrated his early successes were not rejoicing at the prospect of a Catholic on the throne but rather saw it as an opportunity to regain Scotland’s independence. Once they found out that he was simply a unionist in tartan trews support fell away.

The expected rallying to the flag by English Jacobites also did not materialise on the march south. Once his own troops realised this together with his disinterest in giving Scotland independence, then they too became disillusioned and the cause was lost.

I would also challenge the suggestion made by some that the subsequent wearing of the redcoat by Highlanders was a voluntary choice when the alternatives were starvation or deportation. When your way of life has been eviscerated what is left?

As for a new name for the restaurant under the spotlight, how about “The Brouhaha” ?

Robert Menzies, Falkirk.

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Robbing our resources

WITH visible obvious signs like increasing litter lying particularly along roadsides and severe potholes in our roads, but much more importantly many of our people enduring poverty and austerity, Scotland is increasingly feeling like a country with a third world economy.

Meanwhile most of us are not consciously aware of the contribution of Scotland’s large natural resources.

With Scotland’s population just over 8% of the UK’s, Scotland effectively gives over 90% of the income from our oil and gas to the rest of the UK. Scotland’s Stock Exchange amalgamated into the London Stock Exchange in 1973 so, conveniently, no income is allocated as coming from Scotland.

Also, according to National Grid statistics, up to 3.5 Gigawatts of electricity can be transferred between Scotland and England, 90% going from Scotland to England.

A proposal exists to construct a link enabling the transport of up to 2GW of energy from Scotland’s renewable energy reserves to the rest of the UK: enough energy for two million homes. Presumably the existing 3.5 Gigawatts capacity is enough for 3.5 million.

The UK Government is supporting proposed infrastructure including huge pylons, very large substations and battery storage fields, adversely affecting areas in Scotland, while Scotland will contribute to the cost.

There are also plans for a large hydrogen gas-producing plant near Aberdeen with 3.5 gigawatt potential output with pipes to England.

People are generally oblivious to the extent of what Scotland has given and continues to give to the rest of the UK. Instead we are made to feel reliant on it for our financial survival while, in fact, public spending on the NHS, education, policing, public housing and the like has been deliberately cut since 2010 by UK Government austerity economic policies.

It is the old colonial power trick of making colonies feel dependent while robbing their resources.

Jim Stamper, Bearsden.

The Herald: Humza Yousaf and his wife Nadia El-Nakla have taken a short break to QatarHumza Yousaf and his wife Nadia El-Nakla have taken a short break to Qatar (Image: PA)

Criticism is illogical

HUMZA Yousaf's trip to Qatar for a holiday break ("Yousaf jets off to state accused of funding terrorist groups", The Herald, February 13) causes more unionist frothing from Martin Redfern (Letters, February 14), who questions whether this means that Mr Yousaf endorses Qatar's punitive legislative environment in relation to homosexuality, alcohol consumption and so on. I assume on Mr Redfern's twisted logic that if Mr Yousaf had opted to visit London, he could be similarly accused of colluding with a UK government that has shown itself to be corrupt, entirely self-centred, prepared to ride roughshod over international obligations with its inhumane immigration policies, and currently supplies military equipment to Israel in its flagrantly genocidal activities in Gaza. But I guess Mr Redfern is happy to ignore such trivia.

Perhaps our travel agents should be warning us all about the risks-by-association of our travel plans, in case we are accosted by some zealot in the queue at the airport?

Dr Angus Macmillan, Dumfries.