Translators wanted for Solidarity with Scotland

solidarity with scotlandOK. I said I’d never ask for donations on this blog, but I’d like to be somewhat less hypocritical than Better Together and ask for a donation of sorts anyway. Not donations of money, but donations of time and talent.

A short while back, Pilar Aymara of A Ponte Entre Escocia e Galiza and the Wee Ginger Dug announced the launch of a campaign called Solidarity with Scotland, which hopes to encourage people living outside the UK to write to the British Embassy or High Commission in their country to express their support for Scottish independence. We started this wee campaign because the British Government is actively seeking the interventions of foreign governments and businesses in an effort to provide the No campaign with ammunition.

We’ve prepared a few texts and a draft letter, and have already been able to organise translations into Spanish, Galician, Swedish, and also Basque and Catalan. We would like to make the letter available in as many languages as possible, in order to allow as many people as possible to express their positive views of Scotland and her campaign for self-determination.

If you are fluent in another language, we’d be grateful if you could spare an hour or two of your time to translate the letters and texts we have prepared.

If you can help, please contact us at


38 comments on “Translators wanted for Solidarity with Scotland

  1. […] Translators wanted for Solidarity with Scotland. […]

  2. Eilean says:

    Sorry but I have problems with english!🙂

    And thats something else to think about post indi. Scots! I want roadsigns in Scots.

    I hope that you don’t mind a wee story. I initially worked for Strathclyde Regional Council, Internal Transport (The Wans wi the Vans!) I was devolved to Scottish Water where part of the departments job was organising the disposal at auction of all the old vehicles and plant.

    There were two of us involved in this. Myself and an old nationalist called Charlie Webster. Noo Chairlie cuid spake richt guid scots. I can given enough time and my Scots thesaurus.

    This may or may not have anything to do with Charlie and myself taking early retirement around the same time but… Did you know that Scottish waters vehicle and plant disposal records for 2003-2005 are all written in scots. Just a wee parting gift for future auditors.

    See these evil subversive cybernats!🙂

    • weegingerdug says:

      I wanted to draw a map of Scotland in Scots. I made an attempt, but because Scots has no standardised spelling everyone and their granny had an opinion – and everyone had different opinions about how to spell the names, or what name to use when there is more than one – which isn’t uncommon in Scots. On a Scots map of Scotland, should it be Glesca or Glesga? I’ve seen Embra, Embro and Edinburrie for Edinburgh (and some hold that Edinburgh is already a good Scots spelling). Eventually I gave up.

      But the powers that be think that introducing a standardised spelling system for Scots would cramp the artistic style of poets and fiction writers. Which is a bit like writing the highway code for the benefit of Lewis Hamilton.

      The current advice is basically to spell words pronounced the same in Scottish English and Scots as they’re spelled in English, and only to use Scots spellings (which aren’t standardised) for words that are different. So effectively Scots is being written with reference to English. And then they wonder why a lot of people don’t think Scots is a “proper language”. It’s totally self-defeating.

      • Yes, I agree, except that I don’t agree that the status quo is that bad. For instance, the dictionary at employs a rather consistent orthography, and in my experience most of the people writing in the Scots Language Centre’s FB group ( write in a similar fashion.

        Anyway, I think an authoritative Scots orthography will only appear if a group of Scots linguists and writers get together and create it, and then perhaps their dictionary will get adopted by the powers that be later.

        • hektorsmum says:

          I look forward to that Thomas, we have an original Scots Dictionary issued sometime in the eighties but it sometimes feels to me like I have to make up a word having been educated in the English Tongue I can speak Scots bet write it, no way, which is sad.

          • Ma mither tung is Dens sae I’m a learner o Scots, an it’s mair difficult tae speak it nor tae write it for me.🙂 Acause I hae leart it as a fremmit leid, originallie I needit dictionars tae say oniething ava, an it wis awfu difficult tae chuise amang the possible spellins for ilk wird.

      • hektorsmum says:

        Paul why not use good old Dunedin for Edinburgh, Embra is not or was not common until sometime in the 80’s/90’s and I have always considered it slang. How toffee nosed of me.

          • weegingerdug says:

            Or even Dùn Èideann. But that’s Gaelic, not Scots.

            I started on a series of Gaelic regional maps at a scale of 1:100,000. However I’ve had to give up on the maps for the time being, as my partner’s condition means I can’t get out of the house to go to libraries and do the necessary research. I’ve got several at an advanced stage of completion, but they need corrected and checked.

            So I’m building a Glasgow tram layout as a reminiscence project for dementia sufferers instead.

      • wee e says:

        One thing you can do about spellings is — look up the old records!

        The Scottish parliament has records from centuries ago online. There are also burgh and town records — and Scotland’s old criminal records, again from centuries back.

        Many of these are available and downloadable from the Internet Archive.
        Others you’ll find at
        (You can use both free, though not every record on the second site is free)

        There are also the collections of Papal Letters — centuries of suppliations and complaints – with hundreds of names of wee parishes and localities.
        These are published commercially, but you should be able to get an inter- library loan if you aren’t within spitting distance of a big library.

        You’ll be amazed what detail of place-names you can find in Scotland’s town and burgh records, and how far back some go.

      • wee e says:

        The reords of the parliament of Scotland up to 1707 is at

    • hektorsmum says:

      Always does my heart good that North Queensferry Station has a Gaelic name. I rather naughtily think how much it must annoy Gordon Brown,

  3. […] Translators wanted for Solidarity with Scotland […]

  4. dickybeau says:

    If you get enough volunteers you might get them to write to newspapers in all the countries too letting them know about the anti-democratic behaviour of Westminster and their toadies the Beeb and press.

  5. If she hasn’t contacted you already, get in touch with XXXXXXX for translation to German, French and Welsh.

    [email address removed]

  6. Neil says:

    I have Dutch and Swedish friends living in France and would be happy to ask their help. Great writing and passion with a really healthy dollop of sense. Thank you.

  7. I could translate your texts into Danish — it’s just that I think most Danes would consider it natural to write to the British Embassy in Copenhagen in English.

  8. Eilean says:

    The fact that Airdrie has most of the street names in english and gaelic makes me have a wee chuckle to myself. Airdrie FFS. (No offence!)

    • weegingerdug says:

      Airdrie is a Gaelic name though. The district was once Gaelic speaking. An t-Àrd Ruigh ‘the high reaches’. There are loads of Gaelic names in the area – Gartcosh Gart a’Chois ‘farm of the cave/hollow’, Garnkirk Gart na Circe ‘chicken farm’, Bargeddie Baile a’Gheididh ‘town of the runrig’. (Not the band, the mediaeval farming system.) etc There are also a lot of Cumbric names in the district which have obviously been transmitted via Gaelic – so clearly Cumbric was locally replaced by Gaelic and not directly by Older Scots.

      • Eilean says:

        Granted (every days a school day!) but modern day Airdrie is not quite a hotbed of gaelic culture.

        I have never got to the bottom of my local town names. Uddingston and Bothwell or Aidston and Boddell as I remember some of the old boys (miners) calling them in my youth. Any suggestions?

        As for runrig isn’t that also behind the name Bishopbriggs. “The Bishops rigs”

        • weegingerdug says:

          Naw, Bishopbriggs is “the Bishop’s Bridge”.

          Bothwell may be Celtic, but there are a lot of uncertainties. One possibility is Both-Bhaile – the settlement by the shieling.

          Bellshill may be Gaelic although in its modern form it looks purely English. According to one source it’s first attested as Ballenhulle which looks very like the Gaelic Baile na h-Uile ‘settlement of the (linseed) oil’.

          Uddingston is one I never got to the bottom of either. In form it appears Old English, but Anglosaxon -inga names date to the very early part of the Anglosaxon period, and were no longer being created by the time Northumbria made its forays into southern Scotland. It’s undoubtedly a Scots name containing toun, but the first element is uncertain.

          There are plans to open a Gaelic centre in the Monklands, so maybe Coatbridge and Airdrie will be more of a hotbed of Gaelic culture than you thought!

  9. Eilean says:

    I like the way that if there isnt a scots word for something then you can just make one up. An example would be for “vacuum cleaner” substitute “Stoor Sooker”.

  10. bjsalba says:

    I have a Finnish friend could ask.

  11. Dougie Brawls says:

    I’ve got a friend from Korea (south) who would translate it to Korean for you..if you want…xxx

  12. You all are fantastic, thank you very much for all your contributions! very much appreciated indeed! We already have people translating in German and French… Please spread the word. The Campaign is on facebook : and also on twitter @ScotlandAbroad . Pilar (Galiza)

  13. I can do a Greek one if you need it.

  14. Alex Wright says:

    I’ve got new neighbours in my stair Paul. A nice family next door, Japanese girl with a Polish partner. They have shown a bit of interest in the campaign. Could be worth asking them if it is any good to you?

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