MY father was one of the most principled people I’ve ever known. He was an old-school Tory, back in the days when principles and Conservatism weren’t mutually exclusive. His background was respectable Edinburgh middle class – with a few eccentricities.

His father died young, and his mother disappeared mysteriously to London during the blitz to work in code-breaking, having been recruited after winning a “Bullets” word quiz in John Bull magazine. My father met my mum in Hanover during the occupation. He was a dashing rugger-playing RAF type. She was a glamorous extrovert escaping from the Yorkshire munitions factories.

Her father was a highly skilled factory worker in Halifax, and my father always had the greatest of respect for him. His conservatism was generous and inclusive.

So why am I sharing this autobiographical reminiscence? The fact is my father and I didn’t talk about politics. He’d canvassed for the Tories in Edinburgh after the war, and he hesitated to ask too directly what my affiliations were in case they clashed with the world order he’d risked his life to protect.

In 2014 he was 90, and very frail. I posted his vote in the independence referendum, knowing that it negated my own and the cause I’d been campaigning for. But I respected his right to vote for what he believed in. That’s democracy.

Not long after, he passed away.

Now the Unionists are saying to a 20-year-old who was too young to vote in the last indyref that he or she should have no say in the future of their country. That young person might be a taxpayer, a parent, might even be in the RAF too. But they are told they should have no vote, because my late father expressed his wishes in support of a Union which was in its twilight years as his own life was coming to an end. The new generation’s hopes for themselves and their own children are to be ignored because my father’s generation have had their say.

That’s not democracy.

Each year around 80,000 new voters come of age. The vast majority want Scottish independence. Each year a similar number of my father’s massively pro-Union generation pass away. Next year those who were too young to vote last time will reach the age of 21.

A “once in a generation” vote? If I were a Westminster Tory I’d be watching the new generation coming over the horizon and pressing Scotland to hold indyref2 as soon as possible.

Robert Sproul-Cran

I WOULD like to comment on the ill-informed remarks made by Colin Clark MP suggesting that Scotland should seek another 2000 police officers to keep in line with the proposals Mr Johnson made on augmenting police numbers in England and Wales by 20,000.

England and Wales have 122,000 police for a population of more than 60 million. Roughly 2000 cops for every million. Mr Johnson’s proposals would increase that figure to roughly 2350 per million. In Scotland we have more than 17000 police for five million population. Roughly 3400 for every million.

I noted senior police in England lambasted Johnson’s proposals as simply not understanding the needs of modern policing, which are not restricted to problems of numbers. While Scotland already has a higher per capita figure I am sure the police authorities here would nevertheless welcome any additional income that may come with the Barnett formula. However, this resource should be used to allow them to be able to emphasise their needs, which are not only about numbers.

I must say that given the scorn poured on Mr Johnson’s election wish list by the Chancellor, if I were the chief constable I would not be making too many adjustments to my present budget plans.

George Kay