A HOST of big names in Scottish entertainment are uniting to raise funds for personal protective equipment (PPE) for front-line health workers.

Presenter Edith Bowman has created the For The Love Of Scotland event, which will feature actors including Jack Lowden, James McAvoy, Martin Compston, Ncuti Gatwa, Peter Capaldi, Peter Mullan, Richard Rankin and Sam Heughan.

Author Ian Rankin, television host Jean Johansson and musicians including KT Tunstall, Lauren Mayberry from Chvrches and Sam McTrusty from Twin Atlantic will also help raise funds for the Masks For Scotland initiative.

The night of music, literature and poetry will be live-streamed on Wednesday April 22 between 6pm and 9pm on the Gigs in Scotland Facebook and YouTube pages.

Bowman, who will also host the event, said: “As the weeks have been passing, more and more I’ve been working out how I can do something to help.

“After a friend drew my attention to an amazing event in Wales last week, with a number of well-known Welsh faces, I thought, ‘I ought to do that’.

“I wanted to create an event that had a purpose, was a way of saying thank-you to all those selfless people putting themselves in danger to help others, and celebrate this extraordinary community spirit that we are seeing.

“Jo at Masks For Scotland had just been in touch to ask for my support, the work that she and her mum Jill are doing is wonderful, so it felt like the perfect fit.

“For the Love Of Scotland will be three hours of people coming together through music, prose, comedy, conversation and thanks, featuring both plenty of well-known faces and members of the public.

“I can’t begin to explain how grateful I am to all the people who are helping us out and giving up their time. Now we just have to do it.”

The Masks For Scotland crowdfunder will use 100% of money raised to help staff working on the front line to tackle the coronavirus pandemic, including in intensive care units, GPs, community nurses and ambulance staff.

Professor Jill Belch launched the campaign last Friday – with support from Scottish actors Brian Cox, Alan Cumming, Laura Fraser and Joanna Vanderham – and so far it has raised £65,000.

She said: “The medical teams who protect us must be protected too. We know that the bigger the viral load, the worse the disease.

“Day in, day out, these teams are exposed to very high viral loads.

“We must help save their lives, the lives of their families and their patients by providing correct PPE.

“This fundraiser will save lives – thank-you so very much to all who donate.”

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