Are we ready for the big vote?

Anyone who visits a bookie’s shop on a regular basis will be in no doubt about how the high street gambling moguls think the referendum result will go.

But even after so many months of argument about everything from the importance of shared cultural heritage to currency a substantial number of people still haven’t made up their minds.

It is not for the want of local and visiting politicians trying to assist them, because Cumbernauld and Kilsyth has emerged as a key battleground in the unfolding debate.

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The local electorate is well aware of bread and butter issues such as welfare cutbacks and claimed threats to job security.

Anecdotal evidence suggests many or most people are taking a deep and informed interest in the arguments for and against secession from the UK.

But there has been very little chance for “don’t knows” to hear both sides of the argument in any sort of open forum.

A recent event in Cumbernauld Theatre was originally planned as a debate featuring both Yes and No-supporting politicians, but nobody from the No lobby was prepared to appear on the stage to argue the issues with veteran former Scottish socialist MSP Tommy Sheridan.

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Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown – who thinks Britain should have federalism if there’s a No vote – gave a rousing speech to the Labour party faithful in Cumbernauld.

And local Labour MP Greg McClymont was recently joined by colleagues Jim Murphy MP (former Scottish Secretary) and Scottish Labour deputy leader Anas Sarwar for a demo aimed at persuading voters that 1,400 HMRC jobs would be at risk if Scotland votes Yes.

Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon at a standing room only public meeting at Kilsyth Academy.

And both sides of the debate were able to air their views at a Cumbernauld meeting staged for union members by the Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS).

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Meanwhile after literally years of argument the debate is reaching its climax and, as in many an election contest, the undecideds hold the key.

Is currency really the big issue, and is the SNP’s claim that the NHS in Scotland is under threat a scare story, as claimed by the No lobby? What about oil – or education, or defence?

We’re keen to hear views on these and other key issues, especially from readers who don’t necessarily have a party political axe to grind.

If you have a question you don’t think has yet been satisfactorily answered – whether by the Yes or No lobbies – let us know (by post, or e-mail [email protected]) and we’ll put it directly to Yes Scotland and Better Together.