FIRST Minister Nicola Sturgeon addressed crowds hundreds of thousands strong yesterday, as the Put it to the People rally amassed in central London.

With organisers claiming an attendance of more than one million people, the event was of a similar size to the largest public gathering of the century – the protests against the Iraq war in 2003.

The carnival atmosphere saw a sea of EU flags stretch out through the streets, with the march made up of people young and old and from across the political divide.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan was joined by Labour deputy leader Tom Watson, with Vince Cable, Jess Phillips and SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford also among the crowd.

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As she took to the stage, Sturgeon sent an immediate message to ardent Brexiteer Nigel Farage, who had himself addressed a paltry gathering of 200 people in Nottinghamshire.

She said: “I see we have managed to attract a few more people than Nigel Farage has managed. Let’s make sure he can hear you.

“I bring with me today, solidarity from Scotland, the land where more than 60% voted to remain in the European Union. Our voice has been ignored, but it is not only our voice that has been ignored. The voice of the 48% who voted Remain is being ignored.

“And, the voice of those who voted to leave but could never have contemplated the mess that Brexit has become – their voice is being ignored as well.”

Sturgeon then turned to Theresa May, who she said should have been in attendance.

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“I am not saying she would get a great welcome, but she should be here.

“Why? Because in that disgraceful speech she made in Downing Street on Wednesday night, pitching Parliament against people, her message was that the voice of the people was being frustrated. So, if that is your view, Prime Minister, let the people speak.”

The First Minster urged the crowd to have hope and use the window of opportunity presented by the April 12 extension set out by the EU.

“What must we do with that moment of opportunity?” Sturgeon asked the London crowd.

“The first thing is this: it is imperative now that Parliament takes back control; that Parliament takes back control from a Prime Minister in thrall to hard-line Brexiteers.

“A Prime Minister – and I do not say this lightly – who now appears as if her only motivation is keeping herself in Downing Street. That is not acceptable.

“And having taken back control, we must all of us – including you Jeremy Corbyn – come together and demand a People’s Vote,” the leader of the SNP said.

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She then turned her speech to the outward-looking and progressive virtues of Scottish independence, as well as Scotland’s commitment to EU nationals living in the UK.

“It’s no surprise to anybody here that I support Scotland being an independent country, but that belief is based on a passionate internationalism,” she said.

“I want Scotland’s voice to be a progressive one, within the British Isles, within the EU and within the world.

“That is why my final message today is one for every EU national living across the UK in Scotland, in England, in Wales and in Northern Ireland. We think you are welcome here and we want you to stay.”

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She concluded: “You make this country and every part of it better with your presence and what has been done to you by these Brexiter politicians is nothing short of disgraceful.

“It is for all of us and everybody across the whole of the UK and above all else it is for the next generation and those who come after them that we say today: put this back to the people and let us stop Brexit.”