AFTER 18 days and 500 miles, they arrived bang on time in London to complete an outstanding effort made by the Tartan Spartans, Wren Chapman and Karl Claridge, who have now walked 1000 miles for independence.

In their walk from Holyrood, down through the south of Scotland and the north of England to London, they have been raising awareness about the cause of Scottish independence.

Crossing the Border from Gretna Green to Carlisle they were on a brave venture of trying to help a Brexit-paralysed part of the UK to become aware, or at least try to understand, why Scotland needs to become an independent country.

Their journey to that point was done in the teeth of a storm, and they spent their first few days battling gale-force winds and torrential rain, which, to say the least, came close to defeating their mission.

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Their resolve to make the walk a success, however, returned with brighter weather, and they continued south, determined to get much further than symbolic Derby. Arriving in London on Thursday morning right on schedule, they had sore feet and tired limbs, but were extremely happy to have completed their journey into Westminster.

They were greeted with champagne on arrival by a small band of supporters amid curious glances from bemused passers by. Ian Blackford, the SNP leader at Westminster, made a point of coming out from the House of Commons to congratulate the pair who started their first 500-mile walk last year at Portree on Skye, in the MP’s own constituency.

Though you might not have thought it if you just read the English press, there was considerable interest from the media, including Polish radio, Australian television, BBC and STV.

Chapman said told the O mundo de Pilar-Aymara indy website: “We are delighted to have got here, it still feels a little bit surreal. Several of the SNP MPs came out to greet us and then they bought us lunch and were absolutely lovely.

“As we walked down the country there has been a bit of a butterfly effect because we have been able to talk to people living not just in Scotland but across England and it is spreading the idea that there is an independence movement that is alive and well in Scotland.”

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Claridge said: “Right now the body hasn’t got used to the fact that it’s not still having to walk, and even when we got here there was promotional stuff and meeting the politicians and posing for photos and such.

“The MPs who came out were extremely interested in what we did and there were a lot of people around who were curious about us, particularly because there was a Brexit [demonstration] at the same time and it was clear we were representing something different.”