By a Newsnet reporter
The Scottish Labour party have been urged to stop complaining about plans to hold a celebration of Scots Olympians in Glasgow and “just join the party”.
The urging from the Scottish government follows criticism of the Glasgow celebration plans from Scottish Labour’s Deputy Leader Anas Sarwar MP.

Speaking in an article in the Herald, Mr Sarwar described plans to hold a special celebration for Scottish athletes as “very disappointing” and revealed he has written to First Minister Alex Salmond demanding that the Glasgow parade be opened up to all of the UK athletes.

Speaking to the Herald, Mr Sarwar said: “Scots cheered on Team GB and Scotland should not be denied the chance to celebrate the success of Jessica Ennis and Mo Farah, just as we will celebrate the success of Sir Chris Hoy and Andy Murray.”

Insisting the parade should include all of Team GB, Mr Sarwar added: “I call on Alex Salmond as First Minister of Scotland to work with the British Olympic Association to make that happen.”

However a Scottish Government spokesman pointed out that the British Olympic Association were involved in the Glasgow celebrations.

He said: “The homecoming parade and reception in Glasgow for Scotland’s fantastic Olympians and Paralympians have been organised with Labour-run Glasgow City Council and the British Olympic Association - in exactly the same way that the Labour First Minister in Wales is honouring the Welsh Olympians and Paralympians in Cardiff. 

“We had the same sort of celebration in Edinburgh four years ago after Beijing – and I don’t recall Labour complaining about that.  Labour would do better just to join in the party.”

Mr Sarwar's demands that all UK athletes be invited to Glasgow, would clash with an identical event to be held in Wales.  Labour First Minister Carwyn Jones has announced a homecoming event for Welsh athletes who were part of Team GB on the same day as the Glasgow event.

In a statement, the Welsh FM says: “Everyone in Wales can be truly proud of what our athletes have achieved as part of Team GB. Their determination and drive has been truly inspirational and made a huge contribution to Britain’s record medal haul.”

Mr Jones added: “That is why we are organising a homecoming event in Cardiff for both our Olympian and Paralympic heroes on the Friday the 14th September.  We will release more details of the event closer to the time, but I call on everyone who can to turn out and give them the welcome home they deserve.”

Commenting on the Glasgow parade, Labour’s Glasgow Council leader, Gordon Matheson said: "Glasgow is the obvious place to host Scotland’s celebrations for Team GB.  I want children to be inspired by Team GB’s success so it’s only right we honour the achievement of our elite athletes."

However, Mr Matheson's views were challenged by Labour peer and former MSP George Foulkes who attacked the decision to hold the Games celebration in Glasgow.  The senior Labour figure claimed it should have been held in Edinburgh and was being used in order to highlight the 2014 Commonwealth Games which he said was “a separate thing”.

He added: “Alex Salmond tried to use the Olympics politically by coining this stupid phrase Scolympians, which went down like a lead balloon, he spent half a million pounds on a Scotland House in Pall Mall, and he sees the whole thing as serving his political agenda. 

“I’m sure that’s why he has chosen the parade should be in Glasgow.”

Louise Martin, chairwoman of sportscotland, said: "Glasgow is a fitting location for this celebration as it was an Olympic city, is bidding for the Youth Olympic Games in 2018, and hosts Scotland’s largest ever multi-sport event in 2014."

Andy Hunt, chief executive of the British Olympic Association, said: "Scottish athletes contributed 13 medals to Team GB and should be celebrated in style."

Mr Sarwar’s attack on the Olympic celebrations follows several attempts by Unionist politicians to politicise the Games and the success of Scottish athletes who won seven gold medals, four silver and two bronze for a record haul.


# Mark MacLachlan 2012-08-17 18:23
Just trying this out for Baron Foulkes ... Anglolympian bawheid yep, that feels right.
# Wee-Scamp 2012-08-17 18:42
No wonder Scotland never made any real progress under Labour. They really are a miserable, visionless, uninspiring bunch.
# brusque 2012-08-17 18:44
Deary me.

Not a lot you can say without using language like Cretin, Buffoon, Numptie, and my Dad's favourite "more brains in a false-face".

But it would be wrong to use such language so I will desist:-)
# peter,aberdeenshire 2012-08-17 20:15
I prefer F*D personally, just sums them up nicely. :-)
# Jim Johnston 2012-08-17 20:22
Hahaha brusque,
You missed out Arrogant and Sneering, so you'ld better desist from them as well or we'll both be in trouble.
# J Wil 2012-08-17 18:48
Totally childlike complaints.
# cjmasta 2012-08-17 18:53
For the Brit Nats everything Scottish must be seen through a british lense.

Every region/country of the UK who welcome home the athletes who they produced should be able to do so and celebrate their achievements without being told how to do it.

There`s a theme that runs through the unionist, Britnat way of thinking which is that everything achieved in Scotland is only because we are part of the current political set up and we`d be nothing without it.

I`m sure people would give a huge warm welcome to all olympians anytime but like Wales and Yorkshire or any other place we deserve to throw a party and celebrate Scotlands achievements.

I can just about hear some unionists moaning already that the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games are too Scottish, can`t wait to see their glum faces as they rant and more people see them for what they are.

Scotland will be centre stage in the world much to many a unionists displeasure i`m sure.

Put Scotland first, vote yes.
# Keep UTG 2012-08-17 21:41
Their concern is the flag,it would be shocking if folk show their appreciation of our Athletes efforts waving Saltires.;-)
# Ken Mac 2012-08-17 18:58
I don’t suppose I should be amazed anymore at the lengths to which some politicians will go to cause a rammy in an empty hoose but Sarwar is surely plumbing yet unchartered depths of idiocy attempting to politicise a simple celebration of sporting achievement.

There is a parade for all the athletes in London planned which is an appropriate place to hold it. Parades and receptions are being held throughout Britain to honour athletes at local level. Jessica Ennis is having one in Sheffield at the moment. Should we insist Chris Hoy and Wiggo be allowed to cycle through those streets in triumph as well?

What this crass fool is trying to do is make it look like the Scottish Government/SNP is snubbing the English athletes. Talk about shooting yourself in the foot. Who is hosting this homecoming? Why Labour controlled Glasgow City Council, and with the city bidding for the Youth Olympics and hosting the Commonwealth games it seems the most appropriate place to do so especially considering the same event was held in Edinburgh after the last Olympics. Don’t remember anyone having a complaint about that, don’t remember the entire GB team being invited either.

The despicable Foulkes has to put his oar in as well of course, once again confirming what a waste of space and taxpayers money he is.
# Roll_On_2011 2012-08-17 20:07
Ken Mac

A full Team GB parade will be held in London on Monday, September 10.
# davemsc 2012-08-17 19:03
Yet another example of dunderheidednes s from Sarwar. He and Lament should be appearing as a comedy double act at the Fringe just now, because they are seriously laughable.
# xyz 2012-08-17 19:03
What are they afraid of?

How awkward for the LibLabCon to have to watch Scots being successful and being proud of who they are and where they are from.
# Barontorc 2012-08-17 19:06
Most public service appointees are surely governed and signed up to procedures which kick in when it is adjudged that mental facilities are becoming impaired.

Utterances which are clearly off the wall are signposts, such as this gem, now well ensconced to Scottish social history, "... the SNP are doing it deliberately."
# proudscot 2012-08-18 09:59
Quoting Barontorc:
Most public service appointees are surely governed and signed up to procedures which kick in when it is adjudged that mental facilities are becoming impaired.

Utterances which are clearly off the wall are signposts, such as this gem, now well ensconced to Scottish social history, "... the SNP are doing it deliberately."

Not to mention the other gem, from that other renowned BritNat - Davidson - when commenting on a matter relating to Scotland, "Who cares?"
# wee folding bike 2012-08-17 19:38
And if there had been no event the FM would have been snubbing Britain's Hardy Sons.

No win situation but I'm sure he will manage.
# Siôn Jones 2012-08-17 19:49
I understands that Ennis woman is having a parade just for her in Sheffield. I trust this intellectual colossus will be objecting to that as well?
# mudfries 2012-08-17 19:49
Sarwar and the rest of the unionists will have to get their heads around the fact that Scotland is a Nation not a region, in spite of all their efforts.
# call me dave 2012-08-17 20:24

I think you came up with the bottom line.

Scotland is a nation.

I like that.
# Breeks 2012-08-17 20:00
Some comments you read belong to the Yes Campaign, some comments belong to the Don't Say No Campaign, but I think both sides would agree Mr Sarwars comments belong with the 'Just be Quiet' campaign.
# Thee Forsaken One 2012-08-17 20:04
I wonder why an identical even four years ago was not complained about? Perhaps something has changed politically over the time? I wonder what it might have been...
# Welsh Sion 2012-08-17 20:16
For information purposes:

Your task as homework is to compare and contrast Welsh Labour and Scottish Labour. Work to be handed in and available on my desk at 9 a.m., sharp on Monday morning.

Many thanks.
# Mark 2012-08-17 20:34
Someone ought to tell Sarwar that our sportsmen and women were Not given a choice to be part of Team GB or Team Scotland.
Obviously democracy is a thing of the past as well as socialism as far as the New Labour Party is concerned.
# Davy 2012-08-17 20:54
Well, at least we know Johann Lamont has a worthy successor in the wings as next leader of labour in Scotland.

Is their nothing that Scottish unionisum won't do, to down their own countrys achievements ???
# jafurn 2012-08-17 21:00
Wonder what he has to say about this ...

I see nothing wrong with that anymore than what is happening in Glasgow.
# Edna Caine 2012-08-17 21:03
Has Sarwar done a course in how to make a prat of himself or does it just come naturally?

Followers of sport in Scotland have always taken greater pride in the achievements of Scottish sportsmen/women than those who hail from furth of the nation.

Indeed, in the sports most favoured by the more athletically and skillfully challenged, i.e. the fans, Scotland has its own representation, viz. Football, Rugby, Cricket to an extent. Even in popular sports where Scots compete as part of an international team, greater interest is shown in the Scots members than most others (I am thinking of events like the Ryder Cup)

These comments by Mr Sarwar and his suggestion that we should not celebrate the achievements of our "locals" as Wales and towns and cities across England are doing will not go down well with Scottish followers of sport.

It seems that Northern Ireland will not be having a public celebration of their Olympic heroes at all. I cannot understand why -
# Edulis 2012-08-17 21:38
Turn this round Anwar. Jessica Ennis should not be allowed to go to Sheffield to be welcomed by her own folk. Instead she should come to Glasgow to boost the British dimension. How stupid! It just shows you, you can be good at school, even become a dentist and still be as thick as too short planks.
# J Wil 2012-08-17 22:04
Is this a sign of what we might expect if the Labour Party are allowed back into power in Scotland?

Effectively a dictatorship where all things Scottish are supressed and culture is homogenised. The English would not stand for such antics and neither should Scots.

I wonder who thought this one up?
# Early Ball 2012-08-17 22:16
Jim Murphy is a football fan and enthusiastic user of twitter. No tweets on the subject of Scotland's win against Australia. Odd eh?
# ButeHouse 2012-08-17 22:28
Sarwar is a career politician which means he'll say anything to get noticed. Foulkes is a buffoon and he will also say anything to get noticed.

Multiply those two by 30 and you have a cacophony of sound by the BritNats which is beginning to make less and less sense with each 'symphony' their howling at the moon produces.

Mods can I ask why BritNats becomes *******s ?

# Mei 2012-08-18 15:10
# Old Smokey 2012-08-17 22:48
Sarwar is a complete opportunist idiot!
In Wales, as Welsh Sion has kindly pointed. Labuor led Welsh Government are planning a parade of WELSH Olympians in Cardiff. Perhaps Sarwar should have a go at Carwyn Jones for not having atheltes from the other home nations
# MakingHistory 2012-08-17 23:10
Stand by for Scottish Labour calling for a Team GB entry in the Commonwealth Games on the grounds that it was so successful and uplifting a format at the olympics. We wouldn't want to get all Scottish, seperatist and parochial now would we ?
# amfraeembro 2012-08-17 23:18
I would absolutely love for them to try that. And a British fitba team too of course!
# sneckedagain 2012-08-18 00:27
Quiet now, lads.

We want him to stay in place.
# Angus 2012-08-18 00:54
Its just like the cold war when the USA and USSR were using the games as a tool for supremecy. Looks like mr Sarwar is doing the same and Scotland shouldnt exist, only britain.
# oldnat 2012-08-18 01:48
Some of you brave souls may, in the past, have clicked onto the SLAB website. You will have noted their bold (but false) claim about being "Scotland's largest party".

I now need to let you know that SLAB have "come clean" (well clean may be something of an exaggeration).

They have dropped that claim, and if you now log onto their site, they are being honest about the views of their leadership (if not their voters).

Their lead message is now the glory of being British (and having a Tory Government).
# Training Day 2012-08-18 13:40
Interesting. I wonder if the name 'Scottish Labour' will disappear entirely from their page over the coming months with simply a 'better together' bannner with Lamont's, Davidson's and Rennie's fizzogs under it replacing the name of 'Scottish Labour'.

As there's no such thing as 'Scottish Labour' anyway, it must be a fair bet..
# clootie 2012-08-18 06:22
I would prefer sport (plus a few other things) and politics to be kept apart.

Regardless of where they are born:
I can admire and celebrate the efforts of a great sportsperson
I can admire and heed the wise words of an intelligent person.
I can admire and support the dedication of a charity worker.

What does that have to do with the recognition of Scotland as a nation?

Should we be fortunate to have any of the above born within our borders, town , village or street I see nothing wrong with recognising it and every level.
# Jenny2603 2012-08-18 10:03
Right, just so I'm clear on this. Atheletes from Wales, England and Northern Ireland should forego any homecoming parades at national or local level held to congratulate them on their success and instead come to Scotland to be cynically used in some sort of pro-union spectacle to please Mr Sarwar.
# Bambi 2012-08-18 12:43
I think you're admirably clear on this!
# Mark MacLachlan 2012-08-18 12:48
Reasons for joining the Union?
# brusque 2012-08-18 13:11
I've said it before, and I'll say it again!

Stop giving Labour stooges a shovel. At the rate they are going they will hit the Great Wall of China any minute!
# Taldor83 2012-08-18 14:00
I genuinely wonder how many of them believe the rubbish they gush. An then I many of them will secretly be voting yes in 2014 but are just towing the line?
# Koenig 2012-08-18 15:21
I just heard an interview with Sharron Davies where she said she was looking forward to the Commonwealth Games because they're on home territory! They might be good at sports but they're far from being the sharpest tools in the box!
# beaty1961 2012-08-18 19:51
What a twit this guy is! I am a Scot living and working in Yorkshire and no one would bat an eyelid about Yorkshire celebrating the great success of it's Olympic athletes.

In fact Yorkshire folk have been making a big deal about the fact they have outstripped their fellow English counties with regards to medals. They show this regional pride by pointing out that 'were Yorkshire a country they would have come 14th - above Cuba! - in the Olympic medal table.'

What does Mr. Sarwar have to say about such blatant Yorkshire 'nationalism'! ;)
# Lucas 2012-08-18 21:36
Quoting beaty1961:
What a twit this guy is! I am a Scot living and working in Yorkshire and no one would bat an eyelid about Yorkshire celebrating the great success of it's Olympic athletes.

In fact Yorkshire folk have been making a big deal about the fact they have outstripped their fellow English counties with regards to medals. They show this regional pride by pointing out that 'were Yorkshire a country they would have come 14th - above Cuba! - in the Olympic medal table.'

What does Mr. Sarwar have to say about such blatant Yorkshire 'nationalism'! ;)

I'm the other way round - a Tyke in Scotland. It is of course totally appropriate that Leeds and Sheffield are welcoming their own sons and daughters home - just as it is for Scotland to do so.
# Welsh Sion 2012-08-18 20:30
O/T - But giving my Scottish cousins the right of reply to the following article if they so wish, if not having done so, already:
# mealer 2012-08-18 21:34
Labours aye girning about something.
# Angus 2012-08-19 00:07
Mr Sawar has to ask himself the basic question; Is Scotland a nation?
The answer mr Sawar is no, we are a threat!

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