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A Tale of Two Scotlands

Museums are a celebration of the past.

Yet for the people who turned out for the opening of the magnificent V&A building, their eyes are fixed firmly on the future.

Yes, its architecture speaks to Dundee’s maritime past. It's named after a 19th century monarch. And its centrepiece is a design by a Scot not seen for 50 years.

But Scotland's first design museum speaks to the rebirth of a waterfront and a city with a tourist attraction which will bring visitors to Dundee from all over Scotland, the UK and the world.

It's the culmination of a welcome partnership - worth £80 million - between the UK Government, the Scottish Government, Dundee’s city and educational leaders, the cultural and heritage world and Japanese architect Kengo Kuma. It is already widely regarded as a big success at every level. The UK has always been a strong platform for Scottish culture and the reverse is true - Scotland is an equally strong platform for UK culture.

Meanwhile, a few hundred people gathered in George Square in Glasgow claiming to have Scotland’s future at heart.

They did so by calling for a rerun of a referendum already decided four years ago and marked it by screening a movie about a battle from several centuries ago.

The dwindling Yes movement is determined to keep the 2014 party going and Scotland in Union is clear - political groups have every right to gather and march to advance their cause.

But perhaps it might be worth them reflecting that they are not just damaging Scotland with their regressive and divisive displays, they are increasingly damaging themselves.

Instead, we prefer the Scotland we saw in Dundee - confident, outward-looking and forward-thinking.


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