Quentin Bell, a regular feature on this page over the years, has
been ruffling a few feathers north of the border lately.
Bell was recently invited by BBC Radio Scotland to talk about Scottish
culture and the way the Scots present themselves abroad in light of
their positive contribution to World Cup spirits.
As usual Bell was forthright: ’The Scots must stop being obsessive about
their ’Rob Roy’ culture,’ he told listeners. ’The wearing of kilts by
the national football team in their pre-match walkabout was an own
It’s not that Bell dislikes skirts but he claims that the Scottish
team’s behaviour during the World Cup just served to reinforce old
fashioned stereotypes. ’What Scotland needs to do is to express its
modernity in industries like fashion and technology,’ Bell continued
Then in a typically cunning attempt to win Scottish hearts Bell told
listeners that Scotland should free itself from ’the emotional coat
tails’ of England.
To put the icing on the cake Bell tells me that devolution is not enough
for Scotland: ’It must form its own time zone,’ he says. ’In one swoop
that would position it as a separate country.’
However it emerges that Bell has his own agenda: ’It would also give the
English an extra hour’s daylight in winter.’