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Ian Hudghton
Scottish National Party
Member of the European Parliament

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Press Releases
14 April
Spanish Fountain Gaffe - Hudghton seeks solution

SNP Member of the European Parliament, Ian Hudghton, has asked the British Consulate in Malaga to help resolve an architectural gaffe which is infuriating Scots who visit the Andalucian town of Nerja. 

The MEP’s request comes as many Scots make plans to head off in search of some Mediterranean sun, and centres on an otherwise perfectly innocent fountain, was erected by Nerja Town Council, with assistance from EU member states, a couple of years ago to commemorate Spain’s EU presidency.  But the fountain contains a glaring error and this is what is prompting Scots tourists to contact Mr Hudghton’s office.  While all the other stones are inscribed with the names of the member states, in their own language (eg Deutshland, Italia, Espana and so on) the United Kingdom stone is inscribed ENGLAND!  There are no stones for Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland so it’s not that the UK’s contribution was designed to mirror devolution.

Mr Hudghton wrote to Europe Minister, Denis MacShane last year when the Minister reported that consular staff were “trying to find a way to remedy this.”  A fresh batch of complaints from Scots tourists just returned from spring breaks in Spain, indicates that no progress in remedying matters has been made, hence his letter to the Consulate in Malaga seeking an update.

Speaking from his Parliamentary office in Brussels, Mr Hudghton said:

“I have absolutely no quibble, and indeed would be quite delighted to see England become a member of the EU in its own right – so long as Scotland was independent in Europe too.  Until that day dawns, it is gaffes like this which just get Scots’ backs up and it is up to the UK authorities to put it right.

“I’m sure many Scots will smile wryly, as I did, at Mr MacShane’s parting shot.  In attempting to explain away the glaring mistake he was at pains to point out that Nerja Council may have asked “for a stone to represent Inglaterra”.  He then helpfully informs me that Inglaterra “is commonly used in Spain to refer to Great Britain, but translates literally as England.”  Little wonder, when London governments have misused the terms England and Britain for centuries!”

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