back to top

These SNP Councillors Burned A Copy Of The Smith Commission Report

"We've been lied to again. There you go, Gordon Brown, cheers," said councillor Will Mylet.

Posted on

Three SNP councillors have posted a video of themselves burning a copy of the Smith Commission's report, which sets out what further powers Scotland should have.

View this video on YouTube

The Smith Commission was the cross-party group set up to deliver more devolution for Scotland. Renfrewshire councillors Will Mylet, Mags MacLaren, and Brian Lawson obviously weren't satisfied.

They started off having a little trouble getting it lit.

But they got it crackling eventually. "The Smith Commission report, this is exactly what we think of it", said Mylet.

"We've been lied to again, there you go, Gordon Brown, cheers," Mylet (centre) added.

A fourth councillor, Kenny MacLaren (right), was not in the video but was pictured at the burning in a blog written by the group.

The SNP condemned the act, saying it has "no part to play in the debate". A party spokesman said:

The SNP has been clear we will always welcome new powers for Scotland. While we believe the Smith Commission proposals fall far short of the powers Scotland needs to thrive, it is important that we continue to make the case for more powers in a constructive way – as we always have done in the past.

These kinds of acts have absolutely no part to play in moving the debate forward. This has been made perfectly clear to those involved, who realise their error and removed the video once this was raised with them.

UPDATE: Councillor Brian Lawson has told BuzzFeed News that he doesn't regret burning the Smith Commission report. He said:

I fully accept that the report may lead to something better, but it is quite clear that the people of Scotland were lied to in the run up to the 18th of September. I have not spent the past 40 years of my life fighting for control of road sign designs.

I am really sorry if some politicians are terribly hurt and offended by the symbolic burning of a wee bit of paper. It seemed a harmless gesture at the time. No one seemed to bother that another national newspaper pictured the report being shredded on its front page a few days ago, and it's not as if we burned an effigy of Lord Smith, as happened to Alex Salmond a few weeks ago.

No politicians were injured in the making of the video. It is clear that even in the days before its publication, proposals for new powers were deleted from the report. For example, powers over the BBC, Health & Safety, and lotteries.

Jamie Ross is a Scotland reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in Edinburgh.

Contact Jamie Ross at

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.