AUTHOR Louis de Bernieres has said that English people like him “would be glad to see the back” of Scotland should it vote to leave the United Kingdom.

De Bernieres, most famous for his 1994 novel Captain Corelli's Mandolin, made the claim in a letter published by The Times today.

The author, who was born near Woolwich in London and grew up in Surrey, writes that “we [the English] have no vested interest in clinging on to either” Scotland or Northern Ireland.

He argues that “the constant complaining and smug grandstanding” of those in favour of independence have “alienated” the English to such a degree that “we would be glad to see the back of them”.

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Writing from his home in Denton, Norfolk, de Bernieres also took aim at what he considers “the barely concealed Anglophobia of too many Scots”.

He adds: “The attachment to Scotland is mostly a sentimental one, a kind of familial love … It is impossible to continue to love those who no longer love us.”

De Bernieres thinks that “the scrapping of the Barnett formula would leave us [the English] about 3 per cent better off”.

He adds: “Scotland is not well run by comparison with England, if the statistics are to be believed, and the rest of us would stand to benefit from a brain drain further down the line.”

On the subject of Ireland, he adds: "There used to be very strong reasons for the Northern Irish wanting to remain British but these have all gone. The Republic is no longer a corrupt and backward theocracy run by gangsters. It would initially be sensible for an Irish federation to be established."

The author’s letter to the Times expresses largely the same sentiments as a separate article he wrote for the Irish Times almost exactly one year ago.

In that article published on January 31, 2020, de Bernieres outlines his reasons for supporting Brexit and argues for Ireland to join the UK in an “Anglo-Irish economic zone” outside of the EU.

He claimed this would happen “if Ireland were being strictly rational”.

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His claims of “grandstanding Nationalists” in today’s letter have been lifted almost verbatim from his Irish Times article of January 2020.

Back then, de Bernieres added: “The English should shrug, and agree that it’s understandable that everyone should prefer their own mess to somebody else’s order.”

“The end of Great Britain also seems to be a distinct, and perhaps even a desirable prospect”, he remarked.

Writing about his support of Brexit, De Bernieres said that the main reason for it was “our loss of sovereignty”.

He said that people like his parents, who had been Brexiteers before him, were “outraged at having endured two World Wars only to end up being subject to laws not drawn up by our own parliament”.

He claimed it was “easier for continental Europeans to compromise on democracy”.

Speaking about Boris Johnson winning the 2019 General Election, de Bernieres claimed the UK “at last has a leader who exudes energy, good humour and optimism, and pulls impossible rabbits out of hats even as his detractors scoff”.