Publised date : 23 Aug 2019

Perthshire North MSP, Mr John Swinney, has today welcomed confirmation of a Scottish Parliament members business debate to commemorate the life and work of Hamish Henderson.

Dr Henderson, who was born in Blairgowrie, was one of the most influential Scots of the past century. A noted poet, war hero, gay rights activist, musician and lecturer, Dr Henderson was also a significant and effective campaigner for the re-establishment of the Scottish Parliament. He passed away in 2002 at the age of 82.

The debate, which follows on from a parliamentary motion put forward by Joan McAlpine MSP (SNP), is further recognition of Dr Henderson’s contributions to Scotland. It comes in advance of this year’s Hamish Matters Festival, which will celebrate the centenary of his birth, in 1919.

 Commenting, Mr Swinney said:

 “I am delighted that the contributions of Hamish Henderson are to be formally recognised by the Scottish Parliament.

 “It is a source of enormous pride for Blairgowrie, and Perthshire as a whole, that one of Scotland’s greatest sons was born locally. Hamish was not only a poet, a solider or an intellectual – rather, he was a figure who fundamentally altered the tapestry of our nation. Scottish culture has been enriched thanks to the influence of Hamish, and we are a better nation for his work.

 “Although my role as a Government minister meant that I was unable to formally support Joan McAlpine’s motion, I pay tribute to her for the work she has undertaken to honour the legacy of Hamish Henderson. As we celebrate the centenary of Hamish’s birth, it is right that we as a country reflect upon the enormous contribution that Hamish has made to Scottish culture.”

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