JENNIFER Allison had come from Rhynie for this.

This 65-year-old veteran of Scottish politics has spent decades campaigning for independence. She and her husband stood as SNP candidates back in the days when proudly supporting Scottish independence, or not supporting Labour or Tory, marked you out as an oddball, worthy of abuse.

“I’m still here,” she said. Her commitment to the cause is unwavering. Even after the 2014 result left her feeling broken, it never dented her belief that Scotland should be an independent country.

‘We have to vote Yes next time. If we say No, that’s it. It’s gone.” The thought almost brings her to tears.

Despite being part of this movement, this cause, for so long, Jennifer – along with other locals watching yesterday’s rally – said she had felt a little isolated during the referendum campaign.

While rallies had maybe been commonplace in the Central Belt, and Glasgow’s George Square seemed to be heaving with flags almost every day of the last few weeks, there had never really been the same sort of thing out in this neck of the woods.

“We went to the CND one in Aberdeen, the anti-Trident one,” Sarah Kyle said. She had travelled to one of the big ones. But they’d never seen anything like this in Ellon.

“It was quite big for Ellon,” says Bill Craig looking round at his fellow independence supporters. “But we could treble this.”

About 53 cars took part in the convoy, and 20 riders from YesBikers. Labour for Independence took a stall, as did Pensioners for Independence, Yes East Kilbride, Yes Rutherglen, Hope Over Fear, and others, who gathered in Ellon for a rally and event organised by Yes2.

Denise Louden and Donald McIsaac from Edinburgh had doubled the length of their drive, going via the Borders to pick up friends.

One of the newest campaigners in Gordon Park, was Alberto Costa, a nurse from Genoa who moved to Ellon and Scotland just last year with his wife and two sons.

“I’m a foreigner of course, but I feel that this can be the home for me and my twos boys,” he said. “I think they will eventually be Scottish citizens. It’s very important for me to join this movement.”

During his speech Alex Salmond praised the rally, saying this gathering and others like it would help counter both the isolation and the “surfeit of Unionist propaganda where the establishment at Westminster, the establishment media and its running dogs will do everything possible to try and belittle, to try and isolate the independent movement. “ He went on: “And even when we have the strength of the social media, even when we have The National paper – and how much we could have done with The National paper back in September 2014 – even when we have the ability to communicate our message, even when we know our message will be the one that commands the hearts and minds of the Scottish people, it is very easy to feel isolated against the barrage of ‘yoon’ propaganda. “ Such rallies, Salmond said, were “important and vital”.