Foodbank’s fury at snub by pro-indy rally


‚ÄčAccusations fly as foodbanks become embroiled in a row over a rally staged by a disgraced politician

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7th October 2014 by Alex Turnbull 12 Comments

Foodbanks have been drawn into a bitter row over a pro-independence rally fronted by disgraced politician Tommy Sheridan.

Glasgow’s Needy has been organising collections at George Square in Glasgow ever since unionist-inspired violence broke out there following the 18 September referendum.

Father and son team Andrew and Darren Carnegie – the principal organisers of the foodbank – say they approached the organisers of the Hope Over Fear pro-independence rally due to be held in the square on Sunday (12 October).

Darren Carnegie said they wanted to use the meeting to ask for donations and to speak to the crowd to describe their experiences of working among the city’s poorest communities.

Carnegie claims he was fobbed off by organisers who told him making an appeal would not be logistically possible.

He was astonished when, days later, he heard that Denis Curran’s East Kilbride-based Loaves and Fishes foodbank project had been invited to make a similar appeal.

Carnegie – who says he has no problem with Curran and his group – claims there were heated exchanges between himself and the rally’s organisers, including threats being made against Andrew Carnegie. He claims that “lies” have been told about him.

In a video statement, shared widely on Facebook, he said: “I asked if I could speak and do a food drive at it as I realised the potential that was there. He told me it would not be logistically possible because of the number of people who would be there.

“We asked if we could do a speech and a food drive and we were told it wouldn’t be impossible only for them to then contact a third body, someone who doesn’t even know about the food drives in George Square.

“This must be about ego. They don’t want me to speak in case I steal their thunder, in case someone wants to listen to me rather than someone else.”


The Hope Over Fear rally has been organised by a fringe section of the pro-independence movement based primarily around Sheridan, who was jailed for lying in court over claims he attended a seedy swingers’ club.

Its main movers are Sheridan’s followers and two small socialist groups – the Committee for a Workers International (CWI) and the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) – both of whom supported Sheridan when he broke from the Scottish Socialist Party.

Although they haven’t billed its as a party political rally, the CWI and the SWP have prominent members lined up to speak at the rally alongside Sheridan and Sweet Sixteen actor Martin Compston.

Sheridan organised a series of Hope Over Fear tours during the referendum after being frozen out of the official campaign by the leaders of Yes Scotland. Other prominent pro-yes groups, such as Radical Independence and Women for Independence refused to share platforms with him.

A statement on the Hope Over Fear Facebook page read: “We would like to make it clear to everyone attending that the charity that will be receiving your donations on the day of the rally is the well-established Loaves and Fishes.

“There is a group called Glasgow’s Needy, who have announced that they will be at the rally to take the donations off people attending. For clarity this group is no way a part of the Hope Over Fear rally and will be operating for themselves and not as part of our campaign. We are not in any way associated with this group or the organisers. 

“We invited Glasgow’s Needy representatives to a meeting with us where, it is unfortunate to say, they were verbally abusive and made threats to the people in the meeting, many of whom were women and some with disabilities.

“They had no interest in sitting with us to discuss how best to co-ordinate the food bank drive, instead their focus was to demand that they were on the platform speaking. We have since been contacted by other people who will be attending the rally saying that they too have been abused by the group over our decision to raise funds and donations for the Loaves and Fishes charity.”

7th October 2014 by Annie

Disappointed to see you repeat slurs about Tommy Sheridan especially when he is getting his case appealed. This type of arguing does no one credit and actually puts people off contributing. Too many big egos and not just Tommy Sheridan's.

7th October 2014 by Janice McCairns

Are you guys serious ? Is this slander needed ? I am rather confused

7th October 2014 by Janice McCairns

Are you guys serious ? Is this slander needed ? I am rather confused

7th October 2014 by Janice McCairns

Tried to post my comment but only a few words are showing !

9th October 2014 by angela kerrigan

I will never ever bad mouth anyone who actively tries to fight poverty. But this? This is appalling behaviour. The attention and donations the father and son team received over the last few weeks has been massive. To now come out throwing a hissy fit because you were not invited nor allocated a slot to make a speech at a rally that was already organised and already had a food bank and representative in place is very undignified. And far from making me think badly of the organisers of the Hope Over Fear rally, it makes think that the father and son team should be a tad more gracious about not getting their own way.

9th October 2014 by Jim Bennett

I am really disappointed that SCVO thinks it fit to publish this sort of nonsense article. Perhaps the author was looking for the same type of cheap sensationalism found in unionists tabloids.Why didn't you promote the fact that this rally resulted in thousands of positive food and other donations for the poor of Glasgow. Rather, you focus on divisive twaddle based on he-said/she-said rubbish.Up your game!

10th October 2014 by Grant Thoms

Whilst no fan of Mr Sheridan, to refer to him in tabloid terms does TFN no good at all. Whether the conviction or appeal is upheld, it's clear from the No Hacking campaign that the NoTW was not innocent either. You need to raise your standards folks

10th October 2014 by Gerry

Totally hypocritical of any of the yes campaign to rant about poverty in Scotland when they were supporting the campaign led by the person who gave away our entire £1bn anti-poverty fund to try and hide the failure of his council tax freeze.#hypocrisy #indyref #snp

10th October 2014 by Mary O' the Colonies

Is TFN now part of the Daily Mail? Who writes this guff? Robert, Graham, Gilly and Paul put their names to articles,but this one and the one about "Cash Questions over Sheridan pro-indy rally" are mysteriously written by "TFN staff". Curious that the author does not want to be attributed. What's the story here?

14th October 2014 by Alistair Butters

Let me start by saying I voted against independence. I also feel that food banks are unnecessary in this day and age. If we are one of the richest countries in the world, people probably need advice rather than becoming dependent on handouts from organisations such as yours.With regards to your claims of high jacking, by left wing extremists, you will find they will try to take over your initiative, calling it theirs in a very short time. They don't like not being in the mix at social justice events. Your stand is admirable although,as I've said, not really what Scotland needs. The Scottish government had the power to raise tax by 3p in the pound. This could have gone some way to alleviating the "poverty" in our midst. If you feel this is necessary then great. Just don't be naive when dealing with Mr S and his Apostles. He talks a good game. I'm surprised he hasn't done the walking on water routine.

5th November 2014 by Rob the Scot

you have a real hate resentment towards the YESSERS + Tommy Sheridan who is fighting hard for scotland i will be keeping an eye on your facebook page ~+ site from now the food was given to Denis curran from an established registered charity -Get yourself sorted and stop spouting hate please

15th November 2014 by Rrrrr ddssssssss

Who are the Carnegies? Why are they so intent on diverting food from established foodbanks? What's their political involvement? Their comment about not been allowed to speak and it being about "egos" is hysterical.Publicity stunts go only so far in the charity game. And personalities don't last either. It's all about We not I. When your helping ppl keep the politics to the side. Flash headlines are all very well but how does this father and son who are operating WITHOUT regulation intend to be accountable for the donations and cash they get? Being related brings conflict of interest. How do ppl KNOW for sure they are honest? By being regulated and having "bureaucracy" etc. Passion takes you only so far. Charities have committees, volunteers and staff and rules for a reason, to keep the passion for helping going otherwise you are no more than a one hit wonder. As for Julie Webster, her outburst is strange for a charity worker, and her perfect red nails look pretty out of place for someone who is supposed to run a food bank and care, how does she lift boxes of tins and food etc? And why is she not taking her concerns to OSCR in the proper manner rather than using the press in a gutter way? Both her behaviour and Glasgows Needy come across as highly inexperienced and naive at best.