by Rona Mackay
Michelin-star chef Andrew Fairlie and best-selling author Iain Banks have announced they will be backing the re-election of SNP. Welcoming the endorsements, First Minister Alex Salmond, said: “I am delighted Andrew and Iain are backing the SNP’s re-election in May. Andrew Fairlie epitomises the very best of Scotland’s internationally-recognised expertise and excellence in the food and drink sector which is now worth £11billion pounds to the Scottish economy.
“Iain is one of Scotland’ most successful and well-known writers and has shown a real commitment to the values the SNP seeks to protect and the vision of a better Scotland ahead. “
Andrew Fairlie, who is currently celebrating the 10th anniversary of his award-winning restaurant Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles Hotel, said: “I will be voting SNP in May because I trust them to do the right thing for Scotland. I think this a hugely important Scottish election coming up in May and I think we are going to be faced with some really difficult issues to deal with in all different sectors of life in Scotland and I really don’t see any alternatives out there. I have thought long and hard about it.
“It is refreshing to see government taking an active interest in the food industry and actually doing something about it.”
Author Iain Banks, famous for best-sellers such as The Crow Road, said: “I’ll be voting for the SNP because I believe in a fairer, better Scotland. As the Tories south of the Border set about wrecking most of what used to make the UK a decent place to live, the SNP under Alex Salmond is committed to the sort of community-based policies Tories don’t understand and New Labour stopped caring about.
“I also believe that Scotland’s most viable future might lie as an independent country within Europe, not tied to an increasingly mean-spirited and right-wing UK, where only profits and shareholders matter. That’s a matter for a referendum, but Scotland should at least get the chance to decide.
“A vote for the SNP remains by some distance the best bet for a Scotland we can all be proud of.”