Scottish independence: Which famous Scots can't vote?

On 18 September voters will go to the polls to decide whether Scotland should become an independent country. Only those registered to vote in Scotland will have a say. Here are some glittering icons in the Scottish firmament who won't.

Of the four million people in Scotland that are eligible to vote in the referendum, most will be Scots. Those from the rest of the UK, Irish and other European citizens will also get a say if they are resident in Scotland. So will some Commonwealth citizens in Scotland.

Scots living outside Scotland - such as the 800,000 Scots living in other parts of the UK - will not.

Some, such as tennis player Andy Murray, whose Surrey postcode means he can't cast a vote, have remained famously tight-lipped on the subject.

Others, such as actor Sir Sean Connery, who lives in the Bahamas, have advised their countrymen to vote "Yes". Meanwhile former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, who lives in Cheshire, wants a "No".

Here are some other glittering icons in the Scottish firmament who you might not realise can only look on as Scotland goes to the polls.

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Gordon Strachan
Gordon Strachan carries the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games Queen's Baton at Hampden Park

Born: Muirhouse, Edinburgh

Lives: England

Job: Scotland football team manager

Views on independence: As the manager of the national side, Strachan is no stranger to the harsh glare of public opinion and newspaper headlines. Yet he has largely stayed out of the debate since the Scottish Sun reported comments he made in 2013 suggesting he would be willing to back independence if the Scottish government would invest more in football schemes to keep children off the streets. Speaking in the Scotsman after the England-Scotland match in August last year, Robert Colls, professor of cultural history at De Montfort University, argued that independence would revitalise the profile of international football's oldest rivalry. He added that the match (3-2 to England) "sort of summed up the union in a way, with England shading a win".

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Annie Lennox
Annie Lennox

Born: Aberdeen

Lives: London and South Africa

Job: Singer-songwriter

Views on independence: Lennox has also shied away from picking a side. Writing on her Facebook page, she asks: "Would breaking away from the UK bring long term benefits, or would the cessation of union be an unmitigated disaster from which there would be no turning back?" and appeals to her fans to "seriously weigh up the pros and cons". The social media network has not always been her friend when it comes to steering clear of referendum controversy. She got an angry reception from those who felt a picture of the Union Jack she posted on Facebook could be interpreted as sending a message that she wanted Scots to vote "No". She responded: "I can't vote on the issue of Scottish independence as I don't live in Scotland. The people who reside there will decide for themselves what they want to do. My flag post yesterday had no hidden message or agenda."

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Irvine Welsh
Irvine Welsh

Born: Leith, Edinburgh

Lives: Miami/Chicago

Job: Novelist

Views on independence: If you've read Trainspotting or Filth, you'll know Welsh's books pull no punches. Neither does he. He's all for independence, calling it "inevitable" in one interview and greeting the referendum thus in the Evening Standard: "Welcome back participatory democracy. How these islands have missed you." The writer claims "part-residency in the UK" would entitle him to vote, but it's unclear whether he would be able to register as the Electoral Commission states that only those with a house in Scotland as their primary address can take part. Either way, he says he will not be casting his vote. In May he said: "I'm happy not to be part of the process."

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Billy Connolly
Billy Connolly

Born: Anderston, Glasgow

Lives: New York; has said he will be in New Zealand on 18 September

Job: Comedian

Views on independence: The comedian has said he doesn't want to get involved in the "morass" of the debate and that he doesn't want to influence anybody so he keeps quiet. More than once he has said he's "never been a nationalist and never been a patriot". He said: "I've always remembered that I have a lot more in common with a welder from Liverpool than I do with someone with an agricultural background from the Highlands, although I do love them, I love Scotland and all its different faces". He's also said he thinks the Scots will come to a "good conclusion" in the referendum: "They'll get what they deserve."

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David Tennant
David Tennant

Born: Bathgate, West Lothian

Lives: London

Job: Actor

Views on independence: The Dr Who actor has previously implied he takes a dim view of the case for independence - saying: "Why do we want to become smaller? Surely we want to expand and look outward?" But to find those comments you need to take a tardis back to 2011, when the referendum had not yet been announced. Since then he's been more circumspect, saying it's not for him to have an opinion on as "sadly I don't count as a Scottish person any more".

More Scotland politics stories


Scotland Live

    09:52: Further devolution

    David Cameron is expected to re-affirm his commitment to devolve more powers to Holyrood in his keynote speech to the Tory party conference in Birmingham today.

    David Cameron

    It comes as Gordon Brown urged Scots to sign a petition demanding that the three Westminster leaders honour the "vow" made to voters on further devolution in the lead up to the referendum "No" vote.

    Is enough progress being made on further devolution? Give us your thoughts using #scotlandlive, via email or by texting 80295.

    09:47: Babcock secures £2.6bn contract

    The Ministry of Defence has announced a new £2.6bn ship and submarine maintenance contract with Babcock.

    Polaris Submarines at Babcock's Roysth naval dockyard in Fife

    The Defence Secretary Michael Fallon says it will safeguard 1,500 jobs at the Clyde Naval Base until March 2020.

    It will similarly guarantee up to 4,000 jobs at Devonport and more than 2,000 BAE Systems jobs at Portsmouth.

    The company made headlines back in August when it warned its Clyde-based workforce that Scottish independence could lead to job losses.

    09:40: Recovery mode John Beattie BBC Scotland

    Earlier, John tweeted that he's returned to work after being sidelined for two days with the Norovirus.

    He then asked Lynsey Sharp, Scotland's 800m runner who won silver at the Commonwealth Games just hours after being on a drip following a bout of sickness, how she did it?

    Lynsey Sharp

    Lynsey tweeted in reply: I still haven't worked that out! Pure determination?

    09:30: Oil's corroding pipeline? Douglas Fraser Business and economy editor, Scotland

    Oil and gas burned furiously through the independence referendum campaign. Quite a lot was said by people on both sides who should have known better.

    Read my analysis of the issues likely to have an impact on the sector in the coming years.

    Oil platform pipes
    @bbcradioscotland 09:25: Get involved

    Is it right to use the electoral register to pursue people for unpaid bills and taxes? Call Louise on 0500 92 95 00 with your opinion.

    @sportscotland 09:21: Get involved

    sportscotland tweets: Great to see #Glasgow dressed & ready for another big sporting event! Good luck to everyone in Great Scottish Run.

    Great Scottish Run signs

    Are you taking part in the Great Scottish Run this weekend? If so, how's your training been going? Text 80295, tweet using #scotlandlive or email

    09:11: Lamont: 'It was right to join Tories'

    Labour's decision to campaign jointly with the Conservatives ahead of Scotland's referendum was "the right thing to do", Johann Lamont says.

    Johann Lamont

    Speaking to the BBC, the Scottish Labour leader said questions were asked internally about whether her party should work together with the Tories in the Better Together campaign group.

    You can hear more from Ms Lamont and other key figures from both sides of the referendum debate in the BBC documentary How the Campaign Was Won, tonight on BBC One Scotland at 22:35.

    09:00: John Beattie BBC Scotland

    Good morning folks, back at work after two days off with the Norovirus, oh happy, happy days. Hats off to @LynseySharp when she ran after it.

    08:57: Fastest finger first... Kevin Keane BBC Scotland reporter

    tweets: This is what your phone is connected to. From today, in Aberdeen, callers will have to use 11 number for local calls.

    Phone wires
    08:51: Get involved Marianne Taylor BBC Scotland news

    News that phone users in Aberdeen will now have to dial the full 11-digit telephone number to make a local call on a landline got us thinking about phone-related songs.

    Let's hope callers won't be Hangin' on the Telephone for too long, otherwise they might have to ring Mr Telephone Man for help. (Bet you never thought New Edition would get a mention this early in the morning).

    Can you think of any others? Tweet us using #scotlandlive, email us here or text 80295.

    08:45: Back page headlines

    Anthony Stokes insists he's unfazed by his barren scoring streak in European football, reports The Scotsman.

    The Celtic striker has scored only twice in 22 appearances ahead of Thursday's Europa League match against Dinamo Zagreb.

    Celtic striker Anthony Stokes

    St Johnstone manager Tommy Wright believes Scotland counterpart Gordon Strachan was too slow in calling up striker Stevie May, reports The Herald.

    Read the rest of the sport stories making the headlines in our round-up here.

    08:40: Ewe won't believe it... Traffic Scotland

    tweets: #A9 N/B @ Blair Atholl - sheep on the road...baaaaaaa...#takecare

    08:32: Read all about it...

    The aftermath of the referendum continues to dominate the agenda in this morning's papers.

    Scotland's newspapers

    "Honour the Vow" is the headline in the Daily Record, which urges the Westminster parties to keep their promise of new powers for the Scottish Parliament.

    Labour and the Conservatives are "at loggerheads" over the issue, according to The Scotsman, while The Times says Mr Brown is "clearly furious" at the Tory proposals.

    Read our full newspaper review here.

    08:27: Louise White Presenter, Morning Call

    Join me at 08:50 when we'll be talking about the backlash over plans to chase voters who registered for the referendum for unpaid council tax.

    Elsewhere, we'll be asking whether GPs should be open seven days a week.

    Lines are open now. Call 0500 929500, email or text 80205.

    Louise White
    08:20: Constance eyes SNP deputy leader role

    Scottish Youth Employment Secretary Angela Constance is launching her bid to be SNP deputy leader, with a focus on making the case for independence.

    The MSP will formally announce she is running at an event in her Almond Valley constituency.

    She will compete against Transport Minister Keith Brown and SNP Treasury spokesman Stewart Hosie for the job.

    Scottish Youth Employment Secretary Angela Constance

    Ms Constance, a member of the Scottish cabinet who is also responsible for training and women's employment, has been an MSP since 2007.

    The SNP's new leadership team will be decided in a vote by party members and announced in November at the SNP conference in Perth.

    08:10: Referendum 'boos'

    A number of staff at a Scottish independence referendum count were replaced during the proceedings because of their behaviour.

    A group of four people were relieved of their duties at Highland Council's count in Dingwall on 18 September following complaints.

    It was understood some were seen giving the thumbs up and high-fiving each other when "Yes" votes were opened.

    Votes being counted at the Scottish referendum

    It was claimed boos were heard when "No" votes were opened.

    Highland Council has confirmed it received complaints during the count.

    08:04: Weather update BBC Scotland Weather Latest

    Morning all - Gillian with you again. It'll brighten up nicely today, but feeling much fresher than yesterday, 14-16C, rather than 18-21C. After a damp start, rain will become confined to the Borders by afternoon, plenty of sunshine elsewhere. Just a few showers in the windy north west.

    08:02: MoD jobs boost

    The Ministry of Defence has awarded £3.2bn of contracts to support the management of UK naval bases and says 7,500 jobs will be secured.

    The money will also be used to maintain and repair the Royal Navy's fleet of warships and submarines.


    Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said the investment at Faslane, Devonport and Portsmouth naval bases was the "second biggest defence contract placed by this government".

    08:00: Welcome Thomas McGuigan BBC Scotland News

    Good morning and welcome to Scotland Live, as we bring you the latest news, sport, travel and weather between now and 18:00.



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