YOU should have seen yourselves. You were beautiful. Saltires waving, banners flying, wheelchairs leading, pipers piping, drummers drumming, everyone smiling but determined.

They came from all over Scotland and beyond to make a gigantic show of support for independence during Saturday’s march and rally in Glasgow, organised by All Under One Banner. They were of all ages, some hirpling, some in prams, and some with “doggies for indy” alongside.

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They kept on coming, and they kept on marching, an irresistible tide of representatives from every sector of this mongrel nation in by far the biggest ever march for independence.

From Kelvingrove Park to Glasgow Green, a jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring torrent of Scottish humanity wound its colourful, noisy, good-humoured and above all positive way through our biggest city.

It was huge, a game-changer for the Yes DIY movement, for it showed that even without the SNP leading – though many, many members took part – there is not just an appetite for this nation to take its rightful place among the world’s nation states, there is a passionate hunger for it.

The numbers will never be accurately known, for the simple reason that hundreds and perhaps thousands of people joined and left the march along the route. The police – who, it must be said, were quite superb – estimated that 35,000 marched, some of the organisers put the total at 80,000, but the true figure was somewhere in between.

Having witnessed the 25,000 marchers for democracy in Edinburgh in December 1992, this reporter feels there were about 55-60,000 in Glasgow. Put it this way – the front of the procession was in the city centre while some were leaving Kelvingrove.

Although the SNP depute leadership hustings took MPs and MSPs away, there were leading SNP members on the march such as MP Tommy Sheppard, who said: “Because there is so much political chaos, we have to accept that the phase we are in is a preparatory one, but we must maintain awareness and presence. This march and the recent Hands Off Our Parliament event help greatly.”

MSPs Keith Brown and Ivan McKee joined for a while before going to the hustings. Brown said: “I have been in the party for 35 years and I have never seen a march like this. It’s fantastic.”

Above all it was a day for the (extra-) ordinary people of Scotland.

Sheila Roberts, 73, from the city’s Hyndland, said: “this helps us, it makes us feel good,” while Moira Macmillan, 64, from Garnethill, said: “We were always into independence but Brexit and the Tories made up our minds – I lived through the Thatcher years and this lot are even worse.” Sharon Trish, originally from Alaska and now living in Duror by Glencoe, said: “I am here because I want to be part of this and be around people who want independence – we need hope.”

Yes Linton, the new Yes group in the Borders village, unfurled its brand-new banners.

Member Dean Woodhouse said: “It’s been absolutely fantastic and one thing I noticed is that at the end on Glasgow Green, people were picking up the litter and binning it.

“That’s because we have respect for the city and pride in our country.”

From Kilmarnock came friends Meg Sinclair, 13, and 14-year-old Kirsten Pretswell. Meg said: “I want to thank my papa for bringing me here” while Kirsten added: “If I was given the choice I think I would vote for independence.”

They are the future, and that was what so many marched for on Saturday – a future with choices.

There were three tiny clumps of counter-demonstrators, including one in Clyde Street where eight or nine tried to provoke the marchers. They did not succeed, nor were there any clashes other than verbal jousts at their main gathering on Union Street (we await the day it is renamed Independence Street). The total number of Unionists was less than 50, and their Union Jacks were a dozen or so – outnumbered by a thousand to one. Some of the Unionist media – although not the BBC – concentrated on the Union flags and “protest”, which included some individuals giving Nazi salutes. The group also had a banner that was completely wrong – Union City Glasgow, it said. That will be Glasgow that voted Yes in September 2014, is now run by an SNP-led council and has a large majority of the city’s MPs and MSPs.

Next up will be Dumfries, Bannockburn and Inverness, but it was Glasgow on Saturday that proved comprehensively that Scotland has no fear of another independence referendum. On the contrary – bring it on.