Photographer Takes on Scottish Independence

Collin McPherson, Lone Piper, Carter Bar (2014) Photo: Courtesy Colin McPherson/Document Scotland


As the debate on Scottish independence approaches its climax ahead of September’s referendum, photographer Colin McPherson walked the entire 96 mile length of the England-Scotland border on the Scottish side and documented his journey. The results, Beyond the Border, are now on view at Bradford’s Impressions gallery through September 27.

McPherson, who was born in Scotland and now lives on Merseyside shows a picturesque, barren landscape indifferent on one side of the boarder from the other. Today only a wire fence divides Scotland from England, a border which has been recognized by both sides for over 800 years since the Treaty of York of 1237.

Only one of the images actually portrays the division, a photograph of the border at Carter Bar depicting a kilted piper welcoming travelers to Scotland, St George’s cross waving next St Andrews cross above. Another depicts the site of the last battle between the Scots and the English, known as the Redeswire Fray of 1575, in which the Scots claimed victory. Others take up more everyday subjects: a Scottish woman car a Union Jack bag, a young equestrian holding trophies, and a wedding party among them.

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