THE distinctive Glasgow Life branding has been removed from material used to promote an arms fair being held in Scotland’s largest city and which its local authority is supporting.

The distinctive pink logo was taken off the website for the Undersea Defence Technology (UDT) 2018 conference which is due to be held at the Scottish Exhibition Centre at the end of this month.

Babcock, which makes parts of the Trident nuclear submarines, along with defence giants BAE Systems and Leonardo are among the main sponsors. It is understood the removal of the Glasgow Life branding – which is used to promote the city to its citizens as well to the rest of Scotland and the wider world – took place the day after an open letter signed by a wide number of prominent people and organisations objecting to its use to promote the event was published.

Writers Alasdair Gray, James Kelman and Alan Bissett were among those who put their name to the letter which was also signed by the Peace charity Dove Tales, anti-nuclear campaigner Brian Quail, Jean Anderson of Scottish CND and Sean Clerkin of Action for Scotland.

“We note with dismay that UDT is supported by Glasgow Life through its People Make Glasgow Branding,” the letter said. “Regardless of the financial benefits to the city it is shameful for Glasgow to be facilitating the work of companies like BAE who make the Eurofighter jets being used by Saudi Arabia to bomb the people of Yemen, and Leonardo, whose arms have been used by the Turkish state against the Kurdish people of Afrin.”

Glasgow City Council, which is led by the SNP, has come under attack for backing the event. SNP MPs have campaigned against the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia and the party is opposed to Trident renewal. The council pledged last month to consider establishing an ethical events’ policy and has maintained the decision to host the event was taken by officials, that it is expected to generate £130 million and that the fair was held in the city in 2008 – when the council was under Labour control.

Andrew Smith of Campaign Against Arms Trade said: “Glasgow Life needs to come clean. It is either supporting the arms fair or it isn’t. Simply removing its logo from the website but offering the same logistical support isn’t good enough. “

Green MSP Ross Greer said: “Glasgow City Council is now attempting to deploy its own stealth technology in the form of a marketing gimmick. Public money is still being used to support an arms fair and showcase for the next generation of Trident nuclear submarines, Glasgow Life has simply been shamed into taking the city’s branding off the materials.”

The Quakers added: “Glasgow is committed to peace in opposing Trident, and Quakers in Scotland urge Glasgow city council to extend this commitment by opposing the arms fair. “

A Glasgow city council said: “Our conventions team uses the brand – and, in this case, that reflected the practical support they offer to event organisers and venues in the city. At the same time, the brand is hugely popular and we appreciate that people in the city feel some sense of ownership of it – which is a really positive thing. There was clearly some confusion about what it represented on this occasion, so we agreed with the organiser that it was better to remove it.”

The statement said there was no change to the practical support provided for the event.