Could South Norwood break away from Croydon and join independent Scotland? Tourist board to hold referendum

Scots could soon enjoy South Norwood's lakes without even leaving their country

Scots could soon enjoy South Norwood's lakes without even leaving their country

First published in News
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Croydon Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter - Croydon

Commuting from Croydon to South Norwood today requires only an Oyster card. In three months, you might also need your passport.

When the people of Scotland go to the polls to vote on the country's independence in September they could wind up with a South London colony, if one group of locals gets its way.

A week before Scotland's historic vote the South Norwood Tourist Board will hold a referendum of its own - with independence and an unlikely union with the tartan nation options on the ballot paper.

It is to set up two polling stations in South Norwood and Woodside on September 11, with any residents aged 16 and over invited to vote.

While South Norwood and Scotland may seem unlikely bedfellows, they are not without links. 

Scottish-born Sherlock Holmes author Sir Arthur Conan Doyle lived in South Norwood, while there are lesser-known footballing ties.

Ian Bone, one of the board's founders, said: "Obviously there is a humourous side to the it, but we are seeing it right through.

"We will declare the result on the night on the steps of Stanley Halls.

"There are historic connections, including Arthur Conan Doyle and also a lot of football connections between what was then South Norwood football club and Queen's Park in Scotland.

"Two Scottish football players who played for South Norwood played in the first ever England-Scotland football international."

He added: "It would certainly be handy for Mr Salmond, when he was conducting international affairs, to have a Scottish pied-a-terre so close to both Gatwick and Westminster.

"It would also be convenient for those Scots who work in London to just jump on the train at London Bridge and be back in Scotland within 30 minutes."

If the people of South Norwood opt to go it alone, however,  the group have plans for government headquarters in Stanley Halls and an economy founded on fracking - and, of course, tourism.

The People's Republic of South Norwood would also demand the return of the Stanley Art Collection and enter songs into the Eurovision song contest.

But it is one pledge in particular - entry for Crystal Palace into the Champions League - that could seal the highest turnout any election has ever seen.

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