EDINBURGH - About 12,000 Protestant loyalists from Northern Ireland and Scotland marched through central Edinburgh on Saturday in an emotional show of support for keeping Scotland in the United Kingdom.
With drums, flutes, banners, bowler hats and orange sashes, loyalists, named for their allegiance to the British throne, said the Sept. 18 vote threatened their culture and history.
"It's your own history being taken away from you. What will you tell your grandchildren?" said Jim Prentice, a gardener wearing a Rangers football club shirt who had travelled from south of Glasgow to join the march.
The Orange Order, founded in 1795 to protect Protestant interests in Ireland, insists it must stand by its Scottish brethren to protect the union.
Marcher Dave Hughes said he come to show solidarity with the union: "We've been together 300 years. It works, why break it?" he said.